Back to all Project Ideas / Let the Sun Shine In
If you’ve ever had to spend a few hours in a windowless office or conference room, no one needs to tell you much about the relationship between daylight and productivity (and happiness!). But in case there is any doubt, several studies have connected daylighting and productivity in adults and children. So, open the blinds and turn off the lights! Take that student artwork off the windows and hang it somewhere else. No windows in your kids’ classroom? Move class outdoors every once in a while, or to a room with more access to sunlight.
- Prepare your classroom to receive maximum daylight without the glare.
- To make way for more light, remove paper, display boards, and other obstructions from your classroom windows.
- Keep blinds open except when direct sun is causing too much glare. Test out different scenarios at various times of day with natural or indoor light to find the right balance.
- Hold your classes outside at least three times a year and encourage others to do the same.
- Educate your colleagues on the benefits of daylight and how to maximize daylight in their classrooms.
- Ask school administration about policies for hosting classes in other areas of the school or outside. If there is hesitation or restrictions against this, make your case and get others to speak up about the benefits of taking students outside.
- Research on the impact of daylighting on student’s social and cognitive skills.
- Research on the impact of daylighting on performance in school.
- Project Learning Tree’s Top Ten Tips for Teaching Outside.
- Check out Green Schoolyards America’s resources for information, ideas, and strategies for teaching outside.