Tag: Flooring for Learning

26Oct
Higher EdPre K to K-12

The 21st Century Classroom: Flooring for Learning

How premium rubber flooring supports exceptional learning environments.

Learning Objectives – After reading this article, you should be able to:

  1. Discuss the importance of the physical learning environment as the “third teacher” in today’s state of the art classrooms.
  2. Evaluate flooring in educational settings as an outcome driver for both students and teachers.
  3. Examine the role of premium rubber flooring as a component in achieving educational goals.
  4. Specify flooring with characteristics that enhance teaching and learning, with a focus on: safety, indoor air quality, acoustics, comfort, effective operational optimization and maintenance, and a durable, sustainable life cycle.

“Look at your learning space with 21st century eyes. Does it work for what we know about learning now or what we knew about learning in the past?” —The Third Teacher

The materials selected for these new spaces are key to the success of the most innovative designs but also to ensuring the most fundamental needs—healthy air, good light, clear sound, physical safety, and comfort. Even the best decisions about curriculum, assessment, teaching methods, and other important issues can be instantly undermined in the classroom by inferior materials; for example, if students can’t hear or teachers have to repeat themselves, if the air quality is unhealthy, or if the floors are hard and unsafe.

On the flip side, physical environments with properly selected materials, effective light, and forward-thinking design have been shown to improve student performance and teacher success on a wide range of measures from test scores to absenteeism to reduction in headaches and asthma.

As with other materials in educational settings, flooring has to perform in new ways. Rubber as a flooring material has many inherent advantages, but there are significant differences even among rubber flooring products (see Figure 1). Premium rubber flooring differs in quality of ingredients, manufacturing, surface density, and performance characteristics that allow it to respond to new demands. The most functional rubber flooring products can stand up to collaborative floor plans and moveable furniture, foster communication by reducing unwanted and confusing sound, and provide the comfort and safety that aids concentration and reduces distraction. They help maintain healthy air quality and can be thoroughly cleaned without harmful chemicals, eliminating the fumes, labor, and disruption of stripping, waxing, and recoating.

The large majority of schools are not built to optimize learning, health, and comfort, but to achieve minimum performance at the lowest cost. Many older classrooms are actually working against basic health and safety. Whether for brand new spaces or badly needed renovations, decisions about flooring will have a direct impact on the success of students and teachers for many years to come.

This course will illustrate how premium rubber flooring supports some of the most important new concepts in the creation of exceptional learning environments. Although most of the emphasis is on teachers and kids in K-12, the information is just as important and relevant to students of every age, from the littlest learners in daycare and pre-K spaces, to higher-education facilities and technical and career spaces for lifetime learning.

Read the entire article here.

Nora Systems will be at EdExMENA this November. Be sure to come down and meet them to learn more about their premium rubber flooring and how it creates exceptional learning environments.