Schools urged to focus on classroom design to improve student performance

November 2, 2017 … School administrators have been urged to focus on classroom design as one of the measures to improving performance of students in examinations.

Kansai Plascon Kenya, Managing Director, Jamil Virjee, said the classroom design choices can have a huge impact on student progress.

“The performance of the candidates who are now sitting for their KCSE and KCPE will be largely influenced by their level of preparedness but performance can also be influenced to an extent by the environment the student is studying in. Something as basic as colour can affect a student’s productivity,” said Virjee.

Virjee said studies indicate that classroom design could be attributed to a 25 percent impact, positive or negative, on a student’s progress over the course of an academic year.

“When it comes to colour in the learning environment, often the main consideration is functionality as opposed to beauty. However it is now well documented that if well executed colour palette can enhance the absorption of information and facilitate the thinking process” said Virjee.

He added: “Within the classroom itself, variety in colour has proven to support the learning process while reducing eyestrain and fatigue. When dealing with colour in any environment the challenge is to develop a unique and functioning palette that delivers something meaningful.”

Virjee said the power of colour is also felt when it comes to choice of subjects. The different shades of blue colour work well in science and math based classrooms by lowering the heart rate and stimulating maximum concentration.


“When it comes to painting School entrances and hallways, we need to use stronger colours to uplift the energy in the walk between classes, balanced out with neutrals. Colour in a library setting needs to align emotions and behaviors with the purpose of the space. For instance, matching calming wall colors like greens and blues with furniture colors maximizes the effects of color in this space,” said Virjee.


He said the key to creating an environment conducive to learning in a classroom is to not over-stimulate learners with large amounts of bright colors while at the same time we should not create a dull learning environment.

“Through both research and practical application, it is clear that colour can have an effect on mood, emotion, and productivity, which ultimately influences student success,” said Virjee.


Candidates across the country have begun sitting for both the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) and the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE). A total of one million candidates will sit the KCPE while 615,773 will sit for KCSE in this year’s national exams. All focus will be on their performance come 2018.