The learning environment can be a tough one. So many people and so many voices create a huge amount of noise and distraction. Anyone in education can find it hard to concentrate in this environment.
However, for people with hearing difficulties, this can be an extremely tough ongoing battle when they have to work hard to separate speech from constant background noise
One organisation who knows all about these struggles is The Seashell Trust, formally known as The Royal Schools for the Deaf and Communication Disorders. They provide high-quality special education, care and specialist services to individuals who have a range of complex communication difficulties, often together with learning difficulties and autistic spectrum challenges.
Their FE college project embarked on an initiative to encourage a more streamlined learning experience for their students. This meant installing a wireless audio system that transmits the teacher’s voices directly to the student’s hearing aids. To support this development The Trust needed to create an interior which would maximise the benefits of this system and lessen the impact of normal atmospheric noises reverberating around the room and reflecting from hard surfaces such as walls. Simply, to make a quieter space.
Tough Furniture had supplied the Trust with specialist furniture to cope with challenging behaviours for 15 years, much of it customised, so the company was the obvious choice for this new departure. A special acoustic fabric which absorbs and quietens sound energy was used to line all the work stations and also all the storage cupboards. Because these were so extensive across the walls it all made a significant contribution to achieving the desired result – a quieter classroom.
Barry Johnson of Thomas Worthington Designs, the architect for the project said “Tough Furniture met the extremely demanding needs of our client, The Seashell Trust. In addition, they are proactive on detail issues and deliver to agreed dates.”
Listening to and learning from our customers’ often unusual needs is what we do.
Solving problems . . . . with furniture
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