How to improve the acoustic design of schools?

Sound Zero | How to improve the acoustic design of schools?

Noisy classrooms can cause all manner of trouble. Pupils struggling to hear their teachers can become easily distracted and their behaviour and school results can soon reflect this. Younger children are more likely to be affected by poor classroom sound quality because they need longer to take instructions in and generally get distracted much more easily.

In certain room layouts, children don’t have to all individually be making a lot of noise to trigger noisy acoustic levels. Hard, flat surfaces reflect sound waves meaning reverberation of sound waves can soon become excessive and noise will seem to spiral.

Control background noise

This reverberation (reflecting or bouncing sound waves) means noise can be persistent, echoing around the room, causing your brain to constantly be working hard to make sense of your surroundings.

Key areas in a school where sound is an issue are already well known – corridors, stairways, dining halls. These long/large open spaces and high ceilings need to be addressed through appropriate acoustic design and solutions.

The spaces themselves can be a headache, but what’s worse is when noise is transmitted into classrooms and exam halls, when quiet and focus is of utmost importance. Noise can even be transmitted through floors, doors, ceilings, and even through ventilation or air conditioning/heating units.

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Implement acoustic treatment

In our previous blog, we discussed 7 cost-effective ways to control and improve your school acoustics in easy and simple ways. There is a range of solutions for controlling unwanted noise and reverberation, but acoustic treatment is the most important for school acoustics because effectiveness is paramount when children’s learning and staff’s wellbeing are on the line.

Did you know that poor acoustics in classrooms is attributed to staff taking off extra days with sick leave due to stress and voice strain? In classrooms where levels of noise spiral, speech intelligibility suffers and so teachers are forced to speak louder. In these cases, as well, the background noise may not be extremely noticeable, but reverberation and poor acoustics add to the impact on speech intelligibility.

There are many methods to implement noise control with acoustic treatment such as sound panels, sound proofing and ceiling baffles. These products absorb the sound and stop it from transmitting back into the room or through a partition into a joining space.

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Our Wood Wall is the ideal addition to any classroom. It really will spark a conversation with pupils and parents alike.

Your school’s acoustic needs

Each solution of acoustic treatment will be different depending on the severity of the challenges in the space as well as the needs of the school and its staff and pupils. For example, SEN pupils require much less reverberation time and higher speech intelligibility than other students.

Acoustically treated spaces supply a much better classroom and school experience due to providing significantly better sound quality and therefore better concentration, achievement and wellbeing for pupils and teachers.

Why don’t you take a look at our blog on 6 things you should know about classroom acoustics?

Conclusion: Contact an expert today

Our team is available to discuss your school acoustics needs to ensure you select the right product from our line. We have a range of products that include moss wallscork panelsinsulation foamacoustic foam, and wall panel pro. All of these acoustic panel options can be completely customised to your colour, size, fabric, and other product requests.

Whether you need maximum noise reduction or slight adjustments to your classroom acoustics, we can help. We have helped countless schools and organisations improve their school acoustics over the years. Please do not hesitate to contact us today to go over our unique acoustic panels for schools that can help your students achieve better concentration.

Sound Zero | School Acoustics eBook

Speak to us about improving your acoustic environment

If you’d like to talk to one of our experts, either give us a call on 020 3984 2000, email us or fill out the form and we'll get back to you ASAP.