Designing for the New Class: Educational Wellness Spaces

After spending summer vacation relaxing, playing and traveling, students and teachers are heading back to school, a space filled with loud noises, bright colors, and constant sitting – a recipe for overstimulation. For students and teachers alike, how can classrooms and other school rooms foster collaborative and creative minds rather than exhaust and overwhelm them? The answer is in design.

According to the 2023 Trends Outlook Report, released earlier this year by the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), schools are being revamped to be more “healthy, safe, and supportive of student and staff wellbeing” through the thoughtful use of “materials and surfaces selections, lighting and daylighting, furnishings, and acoustics.”

Below, you’ll find information on tools from Turf and Momentum that designers can choose from as they start and continue to design educational spaces centered around the wellbeing of their inhabitants.

Momentum’s Ritual textile collection was inspired by the idea that rituals, a core human practice for millennia, have been scientifically proven to have a positive impact on health and well-being. Using simple, repetitive geometric imagery, this collection features a range of eight bespoke designs, which include woven and coated textiles, designed to promote healing and mindfulness.

Research from the ASID 2023 Trends Outlook Report states that neurodivergent communities can be overwhelmed by traditional environments, including classrooms (noisy, crowded, brightly lit), so alternative ways of designing should be considered for making spaces “more welcoming and supportive.”

When integrated into a calming educational space, the Ritual collection can accommodate neurodiversity and provide a soothing environment for children who may be overwhelmed by sensory input. Incredibly durable and easy to clean, the textiles can help them find better focus among the busyness of school and achieve a deeper sense of connection to their environment.

Encouraging, calming, and distraction-free spaces are at the forefront of acoustic solution brand Turf’s mission to transform spaces into welcoming environments, including educational ones.

Turf’s improved Hues color palette of 32 colors connects color and sound to enable flexibility in tone across various spaces. The award-winning palette was specifically designed with sensitivity towards overlooked communities and aims to serve the neurodiverse community, a focus that many schools and universities are implementing in their daily practices. According to the ASID 2023 Trends Report, greater attention is “being paid to neurodiversity and the impact of environments on diverse occupants” in public and commercial spaces.

Even beyond color, the acoustic performance of a space plays a key role in the productivity, concentration, and comfort within an environment, so the high-performance of Turf’s acoustic solutions – baffles, tiles and screens alike – can make a huge difference in supporting student and faculty wellbeing.

As we usher in this new generation of learners, keeping in mind the overbearing presence of screens and technology, offerings like Momentum’s Ritual and Turf’s Hues palette and products help keep wellness at the forefront.