Designing for Student Comfort in K12 Schools

young children playing in a classroom


It doesn't matter how captivating your K12 classes are – odds are that there's at least one student struggling to stay focused. While the reasons vary, a very common and highly manageable reason is that they simple aren't comfortable! You don't have to be a rocket scientist to conclude that students learn best when they're comfortable in their environment, so how can you increase the comfort in your school?

Start with Seating

Makes sense, right? If you want to make sure that your students have everything they need to be comfortable when seated, then you should provide comfortable seats, tables, desks and chairs. That means make choices based on ergonomics. It's also an intelligent idea to furnish your learning spaces with work surfaces that are height-adjustable! This allows for your students to switch things up by raising or lowering the height of their desks to the perfect level for them!

Get Your Lighting Right

Lighting has a huge impact on a kid's level of comfort, and ultimately, their ability to retain their focus. For this reason, K12 schools should seek to optimize their use of natural lighting wherever possible – avoiding alternatives such as fluorescent lights. Where natural light isn't an option, choose warmer, recessed lighting sources.

Replacing light fixtures isn't an option right now? Light filters offer an affordable option for softening classroom lighting!


If your K12 school features active learning environments, then you know they can get pretty noisy. Students are moving around, sharing ideas, and talking with their peers. The noice this generates is somewhat of a necessary evil, making it hard for some students to focus. This is especially the case with students suffering from sensory processing issues. This is why acoustics are so vital! Walls and panels with sound absorption technology are a highly effective way of improving your acoustics and decreasing the stress and distraction caused by noisy environments.

You may also want to consider including sectioned off spaces where students can go to decompress. This allows students the space to relax for a minute without being excluded from the classroom.

Thoughtful K12 Design

From the beginning of the K12 design process, consider how you'll create spaces that are both comfortable and favorable for all types of students. This sort of thoughtfulness in your designs will have a powerful effect on students for many years down the road. Considering the factors outlined here can have a big impact on students’ ability to focus and succeed!

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