Cast your mind back, if you can, to the classroom of 20 or 30 years ago. The chances are you’ll envisage neat rows of traditional flip-top desks, dotted with paper notepads, rickety wooden chairs and a large blackboard looming at the front. Overhead, flickering fluorescent strips cast their light over the room.
Now consider the classroom of today. With interactive white boards, bright seats clustered around desks, quiet areas and even ipads, there’s little doubt that the school environment has transformed beyond recognition. Today’s learning space is pupil-focused, flexible and capitalises on new technology to enhance the learning experience.
Increasingly, research shows that that lighting, too, has a vital role to play when it comes to the classroom environment. A study by Lighting for People revealed that higher illumination levels lead to improved concentration, with pupils studying under optimised LED lighting performing better, behaving better and feeling better.
Here at Greenlite Group we see the many advantages of LED lighting on a daily basis. But, in case you need convincing, here we outline some of the vast benefits it can offer in a school environment.
- Flexibility. Unlike incandescent or fluorescent bulbs, LED lighting can be adjusted in colour and intensity throughout the day. That means it can be readily adapted to work in harmony with children’s changing needs as they move from task to task.
- Stimulation. When pupils need to be alert, for example during a times table test, a stimulating brighter, cold white light can be used. Research suggests this simple change could have a big impact – according to Lighting for People, one study of 84 pupils showed that oral reading fluency significantly improved under bright, cold white light, compared to those reading under dimmer, warm white light.
- Relaxation. Of course, young brains also need time to rest between periods of concentration. This can be encouraged by using a soothing warmer light in quiet areas and during break times, to foster relaxation before sharp focus is needed again. Likewise, a warmer light can be used to calm hyperactive children.
- Energy boosting. Studies also suggest that when used in the morning, bright light with a blue tone can stimulate the body clock. Ultimately, this helps children overcome early morning tiredness and improves their focus.
- Reduced flicker. Switch on a fluorescent strip and you’ll be familiar with the flicker, as it bursts into life. Unfortunately, this flicker can continue and some users even associate it with headaches and eye strain, which can be disastrous for concentration. In contrast, modern, well-designed LED lighting shouldn’t flicker, keeping these side effects to a minimum.
- Improved visual comfort. The versatility of adjustable LEDs means visual comfort can be prioritised. For example in an ICT suite, lighting can be tweaked to eliminate distracting glare on computer screens.
- Easy on the eye. In an ideal world every classroom would be flooded with natural light, but the reality is often somewhat different. Architecture aside, the grey British skies can also leave a lot to be desired. However, LED lighting can closely mimic daylight, making things literally easier on the eye for pupils.
- A welcoming environment. We all perform better in an inspiring environment, and children are no different. A bright classroom, illuminated with evenly diffused LED lighting, looks inviting, with the result that pupils will feel focused and motivated.
LED lighting can be fitted in both modern and old school buildings with minimal fuss. It’s also energy efficient, meaning lower energy bills and public sector institutions may qualify for interest-free Government funding, through Salix Finance Ltd. For more information please contact Greenlite Group, on firstname.lastname@example.org