We often talk about the different activities you can do with your students to keep them focused and attentive. But what about the physical environment in which they sit every school day? Physical surroundings can have a huge impact on a student’s ability to process what they are learning. Here are some ways you can create a #readytolearn space for your kids.
It is very distracting when one’s physical environment is either too cold or too warm. Students will be thinking about how uncomfortable they are, rather than focusing on the lesson at hand. A study from Loyola University found that memory and test scores are negatively impacted when sitting in a room that is either too hot or too cold. If you have control over your thermostat, 72 is generally considered a nice neutral temperature. But if the temperature of your room is set at a pre-determined setting, try utilizing windows or fans to make your students comfortable.
Set the Lighting
Students perform best in an environment with as much natural light as possible. Open the blinds in your classroom! Let in the sunshine! Not only will the light help students focus, but being able to see outside can have a calming effect on the mind. Learn more about “How Just The Right Lighting May Improve Learning In Classrooms.” If you are unable to open your blinds, or if you room doesn’t have windows, try using light bulbs that are bright and project a cool, white light, most similar to daylight.
Show Students They are Safe and Valued
Most importantly, you want your students to feel safe and valued. Position desks so students are facing each other and can collaborate during group discussions. If possible, let your students have a say in how the room is positioned and decorated. Students spend most of their waking hours inside a classroom – you want them to feel comfortable and at ease.
Creating a comfortable and inviting place for students will help prime them to be ready to learn each and every day. Plus they might even look forward to coming to school!