Post date: 
Wednesday, 14 October 2015
Good lighting

Lighting can make a huge difference –  not only to what learners are able to see, but also to their ease of reading. The right lighting reduces reading fatigue enabling your learners to give their energy to what they are learning and sustain their engagement. 

 
Well-managed lighting conditions can have a massive effect on the ability of a student with vision impairment lighting to work. For students who are blind or partially sighted lighting that matches individual needs is a must. One size does not fit all. 
 
Ask your learner’s specialist teacher for vision impairment or their habilitation specialist to audit your learning environment and advise on practical steps you can take to improve the lighting. 
 

Managing natural light

Talk to your learner about what they need and be flexible about where they sit in the classroom. While some favour being near a window to maximise natural light, others find the glare of sun on shiny surfaces makes it impossible to function and may in some cases be painful. Adjustable blinds and choosing where to sit can help. Some students’ eyes take several minutes to adapt if they have just moved from low level lighting to a bright environment or vice versa. 
 

Task lighting

Portable lighting for particular tasks or environments can enable students with vision impairment to work more independently. 
 
In this short film Shadeen explains how her desk light helps her to do read print that it would be impossible to see without the extra contrast provided by the light.

 

Desk light - Shadeen remains independent by using a desk light to do everyday tasks

Read a transcript of how Shadeen remains independent by using a desk light to do everyday tasks (78KB)

You can also see a portable light in action that has adjustable lighting levels in this film, which shows Shadeen preparing food:

 

Portable Light - Shadeen tells us how her portable light keeps her independent

 
 
You can share these films with colleagues or students' families to help them find the right lighting solution and maximise your learner's independence.
 

Find out about lighting solutions

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