Great teachers are well known for making their classrooms into positive learning spaces. The impact of such spaces goes beyond making students feel happy, though. In fact, there are some concrete ways that having a more positive environment can impact a student’s performance.
Students who are in positive learning environments tend to feel more confident in their own abilities. While they must still put in the effort to learn the material, they spend less time second-guessing themselves and more time concentrating on getting work done. In fact, there is even evidence to suggest that students who feel more confident perform better on standardized assessments. As such, a positive environment really can lead to greater success.
Providing a Sense of Safety
It’s amazing how the right atmosphere can help students learn. Having the right classroom furniture or the right posters on the wall may not seem like much, but it can make students feel safe while they are in the classroom. This, in turn, allows students to concentrate more on learning than satisfying basic needs. If a student can feel safe enough to learn, he or she is more likely to retain that material going forward.
Allowing the Exchange of Ideas
Positive classrooms encourage students to share their thoughts. Many students have amazing ideas, but they feel unsafe sharing them with the class. When the general tone of the room is positive, though, students are more likely to speak up. This gives teachers the ability to better gauge how well students understand the material and it allows students more freedom to develop their ideas through discussion and debate. Positive classrooms are simply better at allowing for the free transmission of knowledge.
Creating Teamwork Opportunities
A positive learning environment is also one in which students feel comfortable working with one another. When students are able to break out of their own comfort zones, they’ll get a chance to collaborate and develop new ways of looking at the world. This, in turn, allows students to become more well-rounded learners and to really take advantage of the opportunity to learn from others.
Positive learning environments really can have a huge impact on student learning. From providing a sense of safety to giving the students the tools they need to succeed, positive classrooms can make a difference. Taking even a few steps to improve a classroom’s environment and attitude can allow students to make the most of their potential.