When you think about natural light and how much it affects our moods, you can understand how important it is for students to have access to natural light in classrooms. A study done by Harvard Business Review explained that natural light is the #1 office perk, which would undoubtedly translate to classrooms. The classroom environment shapes how students learn, and if stress is alleviated, they’re much more likely to enjoy their time in class.
For schools, window blinds have a huge impact on how much natural light makes it into a space, and therefore can impact students’ moods while also affecting their performance. Continue reading to learn more about the best commercial window treatments for schools and universities so you can capitalize on natural light.
Window Treatments That Offer Choice
Students can be in classrooms for up to 8 hours a day, it’s important to consider window treatments that can easily be adjusted to account for weather or mood. Window treatments, like roller shades, can easily be adjusted by moving the shade up and down depending on what is required at the moment.
Vertical blinds are also a great option, and they offer students and teachers the ability to customize light filtration. When both are completely open, they let in an incredible amount of natural light, but can be closed to completely block out the sun’s rays.
Consider motorization for roller shades or vertical blinds, both in the classroom or in larger common areas where windows might be large. Motorization can help with accessibility concerns, either for people who have certain needs, or because the windows are out of reach.
Blackout & Environmentally Friendly Window Treatments
There are some classrooms that are specifically designed for certain courses, and because of this, different window treatments need to be considered. Media rooms, labs, and studios are just a few spaces that come to mind. Some labs might need a ton of bright, natural light, depending on the type of course being offered. Other spaces may need to be completely dark for the majority of the day. Classrooms designated for film screenings for example, could benefit from blackout shades which completely protect against light. The same goes for rooms where important presentations or performances are expected to regularly take place.
Blackout shades do an amazing job at protecting light-sensitive equipment that could be found in photo labs or other media rooms. Art institutions or colleges can benefit from blackout shades since they can be installed as room dividers to create make-shift photo studios or labs.
Environmentally friendly fabrics could also be a great choice for universities and schools, especially if a school has a sustainability initiative. Choosing window treatments made out of recycled materials is something to be proud of, and could be a major selling point for students and faculty who are concerned about the environment.
Light Shelf Systems
For larger areas found in buildings, like lobbies or cafeterias, consider a light shelf system.
Integrated light shelf systems are configurable light panels that are designed to optimize natural daylight within the interior space of a building. The shelves sit horizontally, or they can be rotated anywhere from -15 to 60 degrees to accommodate various lighting situations. The shelves additionally have a reflective upper surface so daylight can be emitted into the building.
They can also provide shade as the shelves are able to block out the sun, not just let it shine through. You can configure and customize them to fit specific needs with adaptable mounting hardware.
With a sleek, functional design and a wide selection of available fabrics, the Elite Pro™ Light Shelf System is ideal for total sun control. They’re available as a standalone digital control system or can be fully automated.
Other Things to Consider
Functionality is incredibly important when considering window treatment solutions, but design and aesthetic are also important for improving people’s moods and overall well-being. Think about the space and consider what colours, materials, or textures could enhance it even more. Use window treatment as a part of the decor, not just something that controls light.
It’s also important to note that cordless legislation in Canada has been mandated in 2021, so cordless solutions are going to become increasingly necessary. This means a move to motorization or pull wands. Make sure this is integrated into all of your plans moving forward.
You’re All Set
Classroom window coverings can be customized to enhance the learning experience of students and make a teacher’s job more comfortable. There are many different things to consider when choosing commercial window treatments for schools or universities, so make sure you have all the information before going forward with a plan. Choosing the right treatment really depends on each specific space’s needs, budget, size, and function.
We offer window treatments for universities and schools that can help you with your decisions. Since a one-size-fits-all approach might not do, you can always mix and match your window treatments depending on the building.
Keep browsing through our website to get inspired!