Creating good listening conditions for learning in education

We've produced a series of resources to set out the simple steps that can be taken to improve the listening environment in schools, nurseries and other education settings. 

Resources for education professionals

Practical suggestions for teachers
This factsheet aims to support education professionals in the classroom seeking to create better listening conditions.
Creating good listening conditions for learning in education – Practical suggestions for mainstream teachers (249 kb) [pdf]

PowerPoint training presentation

This 30-40 minute multimedia PowerPoint presentation is intended for Teachers of the Deaf to use with teachers and other education staff in mainstream schools to explain how listening conditions affect the learning environment for all children, hearing as well as deaf, and the steps that can be taken to improve the learning environment.
Creating good listening conditions for learning in education - PowerPoint presentation for Teachers of the Deaf (1042 kb) [pptx]

Surveys

This survey includes a range of questions that can be used to establish pupils’ opinions on listening in the classroom.
Creating good listening conditions for learning in education – Pupil interview (502 kb) [pdf]

This survey can be used to help assess a nursery or a school’s listening environment.
Creating good listening conditions for learning in education – preliminary noise survey (289 kb) [pdf]

Other 
A MESH guide has been produced by acoustic experts on acoustics, listening and learning.   

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Advice for headteachers, property managers, academy trusts and local authorities

This briefing is to help schools and other education settings to create a good listening environment to support effective teaching and learning and maximise educational outcomes for pupils. The briefing outlines:

  1. Why creating a good listening environment is important
  2. The challenges of listening in class for children
  3. What schools can do to improve the listening environment
  4. Relevant legislation, guidance and regulations
  5. How you can demonstrate compliance through quality marks

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Quality Marks

We've developed three quality marks to help schools demonstrate that their classrooms provide a good listening environment for pupils. This is a self-accreditation scheme.  Schools and local authorities must read the conditions of use before using the quality marks. 

Quality Marks - conditions of use (365 kb) [docx]

Quality Marks - images (PDF) (444 kb) [pdf]

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Information for parents

This factsheet for parents explains the importance of good listening conditions in education, and what can be done to improve them.

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Sound simulation

Hear what a classroom with poor acoustics sounds like to a deaf children, and then hear the difference that improved acoustics makes. 

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Video resources

Julian Treasure from TED on why designers need to pay attention to the 'invisible architecture' of sound.

Watch the video >

As part of the NDCS Here to Learn resource, NDCS has produced a video clip on reducing background noise. 

Watch the video >

Another video on creating good listening conditions is shown below. 

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A good classroom environment - good acoustics

A video exploring how good acoustics can create a good classroom environment for children and young people who are deaf.