Have you ever walked into a building or room and felt different? At first, you aren’t sure why. Sometimes you notice right away. Other times it takes a while. All you know is when you entered the building, or room, something about your mood changed.
There is a science behind these changes–how the environment affects humans emotionally and physically. There are different areas of study, including color psychology, study of room design and layout, and the use of water in design to name a few. Businesses have long used these findings to improve sales and employee performance. Now some educators are finally incorporating these methodologies to improve student performance and the general well-being of your child.
The Use Of Nature In Child Care Facilities
The use of nature in rooms and design is probably one of the most positively correlated relationships. There is a fancy word for the use of nature in design: Biophilia. It refers to the positive benefits of including elements of nature in building and room layout. Details such as color, lighting, textures, patterns, and water all play a role in how your children feel and perform throughout the day. For example:
- Studies have found that using natural light, instead of artificial overhead light in classrooms, is correlated with higher learning rates.
- Natural and muted colors, such as greens and tans, are thought to increase focus and avoid overstimulation (usually associated with primary and neon colors).
- Students in rooms with desks, chairs, toys, and tables made of wood or other “natural” materials are more likely to have lower heart rates and decreased stress levels.
- Childcare facilities with covered play areas and even better, outdoor heaters or fans, allow children to play or “be” outside regardless of any bad weather reducing stress levels.
The more a childcare facility incorporates nature and natural elements into their building and rooms, the more likely your child is to experience a relaxed, calming, and productive learning environment.
If A Daycare Facility Has Anything, It Is Noise, Noise, Noise
Not surprisingly, sound plays a significant role in your child’s educational environment. An environment that is too noisy can make concentration difficult.
Schools and childcare facilities can manage noise a couple of ways:
- Classrooms need quiet areas, or nooks, located in the back of the room, away from the busy hallway and classroom entrance. This allows for better student concentration.
- Cubbies near the entryway allow children to drop off their jackets, book bags, and lunches without disturbing other children in the back of the room quietly reading or working.
- Small groups of children located throughout the space quietly working, instead of one large group activity, allows children to explore and talk without being a distraction to others.
- Using hanging fabrics, upholstered couches, rugs, and carpets in the classroom absorbs ambient sounds and provides a quieter, more relaxing environment.
Making Child Care Facilities Feel Like Home
This one is a no-brainer – make a classroom or building feel like “home” and your child’s academic performance, and behavior, improves. Home items like sofas, bean bags, wood floors, and rugs help children feel comfortable. Even household items like bookcases and lamps add to the home feel.
Putting artwork and school work on the walls at the child’s level, shows children, and parents, that the school values their work. This is also a great way to track each child’s progress.
However, many child care facilities look only like classrooms. At first glance, this seems like it would be good for learning. But on closer inspection, we realize that children need an environment that provides them with security and comfort, before they can begin learning, so they need to feel at home more than they need a classroom setting.
What Should I Look For In the Design of Child Care Facilities Near Me?
So what should you do with all this information? When choosing day care facilities, look for design elements correlated with higher learning rates and a calming and nurturing environment. For example, look for a child care facility with:
- Natural light throughout the building and classrooms
- Calming patterns and colors in furniture and decorations
- Use of nature outside and inside of the building.
- Covered outdoor play area for all-weather play
- Neutral or natural colors. Avoidance of neon and primary colors.
- Furniture that has a “home” feeling. Wood furniture, couches, etc.
- Students’ work proudly displayed
When you and your child both feel like your child care facility is a home away from home, everyone in the family will be happier.
If you would like more information about Foundations For The Future Creative Child Care and School near Marietta, GA and Kennesaw, GA, please contact us by email at [email protected], via telephone at 770-429-4799, or on our website. You can also take a visual tour of our facility and even schedule a tour with our Admission Director here. Click here for more information about Foundations’ intentional facility design.