Great Ideas for Teachers Using Decorative Light Covers
5th Sep 2018
Teachers are stretched incredibly thin these days. Their jobs are so much more than just imparting knowledge to their students. Teachers are social workers, cheerleaders, emotional support systems, and so much more to their students. And they do all of this on a razor-thin budget. So it makes sense that many teachers are recognizing the amazing “bang for your buck” of decorative light covers. To celebrate our teachers, here are some great ideas for teachers using decorative light covers.
A Worthwhile Investment
Schools today are underfunded, and so are many teachers. So the best ideas for the classroom aren’t just fun, they are functional and cost-efficient. With those kinds of parameters, it’s obvious to see how decorative light covers are a great investment that many teachers have already made. In fact, many of our favorite customers are our teachers. We love hearing how they and their students use and love our light covers in their classrooms.
Of course, part of what makes a great investment isn’t just the product you get, it’s the price you pay. That’s why we are proud to offer some of the best deals on high-quality decorative light covers. Out light covers are all $30 or less per piece. They are made of the highest quality materials, and UL rated for fire safety. They are also printed with high-quality water-based inks that won’t fade. For schools that want to install Octo Lights decorative light covers in more than just one classroom, we offer some bulk discounts. Just contact us to find out about our special rates for bulk purchases.
Another way that Octo Lights decorative light covers are a great investment is that you don’t need to hire an electrician to install them. Unlike replacing full light fixtures, anyone can install an Octo Lights decorative light cover in just minutes. Simply open the tabs to unlock the frame (you can do this by hand or with a flathead screwdriver). Gently lower the frame, which will stay connected on one side and swing open. Place the light cover image-side down on the diffuser and make sure it’s flat. Then just swing the frame back into place and lock the latches. If you’d like to see it in action, you can check out our video here.
The Problem with Fluorescent Light
Fluorescent lights fill our schools, and for a good reason. Unfortunately, that reason has nothing to do with the health and happiness of the students, teachers, and even administrators. Instead, it has to do with money and convenience. When we first started lighting our homes, businesses, and schools, incandescent lights were the only option. They burned with a pleasant, warm, glow, but they also put out a lot of heat. All that heat was wasted energy, electricity that was being consumed without creating light. The heat came from the way the bulbs made light, by heating a filament until it glowed. Of course, this also put stress on the filament, which would eventually burn out. Incandescent lights were better than no lights, but they used a lot of energy and had to be replaced often.
When fluorescent lights came on the scene, they seemed like a great improvement. They created light in an entirely different way. They used a small amount of electricity to excite vaporized mercury, which would give off ultraviolet light. The insides of the fluorescent tubes were coated with a fine powder that would glow when activated by the UV light. That glow, called fluorescence, gave the bulbs their name and their energy efficiency. They also lasted longer and required less time, labor, and money for replacements.
The problem with the fluorescent lights was that they didn’t produce the same type of light as the old incandescent bulbs. The light from fluorescent tubes was much bluer than the more broad-spectrum light of the incandescents. In other words, the fluorescent light was concentrated in the short wavelength, which has a number of adverse health effects.
Fluorescent Lights and Student Success
Before long, our schools were filled with fluorescent light. But it would be decades before scientists began to seriously study the effects of this unnatural light. When they did, the results were not encouraging. It turns out that the light from fluorescent bulbs was having an overall negative effect on student performance and educational outcomes.
Studies compared students who learn all day under fluorescent lights to students who had greater exposure to natural light or light from broad-spectrum bulbs. They found that the students with the alternative lighting consistently scored higher on almost every type of academic measure. In addition to academic success, they also showed a difference in behavior. Students who were exposed to fluorescent light all day every day displayed more behavioral problems than students who got alternative lighting. For the students with alternative lighting, behavior improved, as did focus and concentration on school work.
The reason for this is that the light we are exposed to triggers all sorts of processes in the human body. Ideally, the human body sets its internal systems by the light of the sun as it changes throughout the day. The light in the morning is different than the light at midday, or the lack of light at night. These differences trigger a variety of hormonal and neurological processes that affect almost all aspects of health and physiology. The light from fluorescent lights is most similar to midday light and doesn’t account for the fact that people are exposed to their light from morning to afternoon. This disrupts cycles that have to do with sleep, stress, digestion, and weight gain among other bodily functions.
The Benefit of Fluorescent Light Covers
For all the adverse effects of fluorescent light, decorative light covers, often called fluorescent light covers or filters, can be of great help. One of the most important things they do is to shift the part of the light spectrum given off by the fluorescent lamps. Instead of giving off a strongly blue-shifted light, the decorative light covers give out a much more even, broad-spectrum light. This makes the light more relaxing and less of a strain on the eyes. It also means that the light does not trigger or inhibit the body’s natural cycles.
Students who sit under decorative light covers receive a much healthier light than those who sit under unfiltered fluorescent lamps. This may lead to improved educational results and academic success. But the physiological benefits are only part of the benefit of decorative light covers.
Decorative light covers, as the name implies, are decorated with all sorts of images. Most of the Octo Lights light covers are made with natural designs. These designs include pictures of the sky, bright blue with fluffy white clouds, and images of plants, trees, and natural landscapes. Teachers and students alike love these images, as they bring a bit of the outdoors inside. The sky and cloud images are especially popular, as they can give the impression of a skylight or even sitting under a bright blue sky.
Using Decorative Light Covers as a Teaching Tool
It is also possible for decorative light covers to become an inspiration for learning. For instance, many science teachers love our astronomy-themed light covers. They feature colorful images of deep space, night skies, galaxies, and even nebulae. In a science classroom, these can be a powerful inspiration for the study of physics, astronomy, and the wonders of nature in general. For biology classrooms, Octo Lights offers images of animals, especially sea animals. Our ocean-themed light covers are both an inspiration to biology and to adventure and imagination.
One of the great things about Octo Lights decorative light covers that is not common among other brands is the ability to print your own custom images. The possibilities are truly endless. A math teacher might create images of math problems, formulas, or even mathematically produced images such as fractals. For teachers of history, geography, social studies, and many other subjects, it is possible to custom print appropriate images to the topics being studied. With the low cost of light covers and the ease of installation, it is even possible to change covers for different units.
So if you’re ready to learn more about our decorative light covers, contact us today. Check out our full collection or print your own. And take a look at our testimonials to hear about some teachers who are currently using our products.