Does the classroom environment impact learning? Does one need to take care of the learning environment? Ask yourself. Have you ever asked yourself about the relationship between classroom learning and performance?
You will be amazed to know that classroom environment has an impact on performance. Students tend to perform better in a well designed classroom environment. What can one do to enrich this environment?
It’s important to take care of the physical, social & emotional learning environment. Thus, it is advisable to make your classroom as appealing & colourful as possible. Irrespective of the chronological age of learners, it’s important to organise the environment catering to all the senses & providing as many interactive resources as possible. One can also design learning centres, reading corners within the classroom spaces. Labelling each object especially in preschool would help children benefit to a great extent.
An important aspect of the classroom environment is ‘ Colour’. Colour does have its only unique role to play and students’ response to colour must be considered. Bright red stimulates and may even cause over-stimulation. Blue soothes and has a calming influence. Selecting green within the classroom through placement of plants has its own positive role to play.
Talking about the emotional environment is equally important. One must create the right emotional environment for the child. Children are like sponges. They absorb what is around them physically as well as emotionally. What do you want them to soak up? To absorb? To mirror back? If you talk too loudly, how can you expect them to be quiet? If you are easily upset or rattled, how can you expect them to be gentle and loving? If you neglect to verbally affirm their efforts, how can you expect them to reflect back positive self-images?
If you carry an emotional baggage to the classroom, the same feelings will be imbibed by the children.
Mentally Enriching the Environment We need to realize two very important and distinct differences in the way that children and adults perceive work and play. Adults often work for a living and play to relax. For children, work is play and play is work. Children are close observers of the adult world. They imitate what they see. Thus, it’s important to understand how children and pre-adults function.
The social environment is equally important. Allow opportunities for creative & imaginative play. Let children talk to themselves, to imaginary friends, and with their toys. Remember that play can be healing in preschool. It is indeed therapeutic. Teachers must involve students in group activities. Collaborative learning will help students enjoy the teaching & learning process. Provide a wide variety of intellectually stimulating activities & allow for an environment where children can be quiet, reflective, and contemplative. Instilling curiosity through interactive pedagogy will enhance the social learning environment.
One must have affirmative statements throughout the school. It’s important to create the right atmosphere and not just design the most appropriate learning environment but develop the right mindset in all our students.