Ever walked into a room and had to really squint your eyes because the lighting was so poor? Likewise, have you ever been deafened by incredibly loud music or sounds in a room and found yourself wishing you could leave? Well, the same goes for our children in the environments in which they play, learn and generally spend time in. It is important to understand the ways in which noise and light affect children and what you can do to provide the best possible environment for kids
Let’s have a look at why noise and light are such important factors when it comes to children:
It’s no secret that prolonged exposure to loud noises is bad for our hearing, which is why it is especially important that you consider this fact when it comes to the environments that your children are exposed to. This is especially true when it comes to younger children as oftentimes their hearing is more sensitive In fact, studies have shown that prolonged exposure to loud noises can lead to problems like loss of hearing, speech issues, reading and attention skills. Increased blood pressure has also been cited as being one of the effects that loud noises can bring and this can cause other issues as a result.
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Noise can also be an issue when it comes to concentration. Children can become distracted by certain noises and their motivation for tasks drops as a result. This is a particularly important factor when it comes to learning environments as high concentration levels are needed to achieve the most effective absorption of knowledge.
Some buildings are just generally noisy. It may be that they are old and so have the added noises that come with older properties like creaking floorboards, doors and windows. Or they may be modern but situated in a noisy area, which inevitably leads to increased noise levels inside the building. A few easy ways to reduce noise levels are by adding soft carpets or rugs to bare floors and covering windows with thick curtains to reduce outside noise. Double-glazing significantly reduces traffic noise and so is a great investment.
As with noise, light plays a significant role in our children’s development, particularly in schools and nurseries. Light can actually affect the physical and psychological health of kids, which is why it should always be a focal point when it comes to interior design.
For example, in schools, the right lighting actually promotes learning. Extremely bright lights can be over-stimulating and dimly-lit rooms can lead to lethargy and even depression. In fact it’s not usually the amount of light that matters, but the quality. Factors to consider are glare, reflection, brightness, shadow, contrast and colour rendition.
Image courtesy of potowizard / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The key, when it comes to lighting, is to experiment and see the results for yourself. Remember though to check the lighting from a child’s level and not just your own. Natural light is obviously the best, so installing sky lights can be a great way to brighten up a room and fill it with natural light. If however, sky lights are impractical, there are many specialist lighting retailers who can provide solutions such as Lampcommerce.