Does Temperature Affect Learning?

Chickering red apple with school mission statement.



Op. Ed.*



We know you to be fair-minded, thoughtful and supportive of student learning. We are convinced, when you consider the facts, you’ll agree that Chickering School needs air conditioning.

Natick Labs’ research titled “Effects of Hot and Cold Temperature Exposure on Performance: a meta-analytical review,” states “… these data suggests that industries requiring workers to perform under either hot or cold temperature conditions should be aware of the potential of negative effects of temperature exposure on performance.” The findings from the Learning Styles Inventory shows “this investigation and a review of the literature indicated that administrators should include thermal preferences as a criterion in facilities utilization, scheduling of major examinations, and planning the instructional environment.”  As shown above, the data supports maintaining temperatures under 80 degrees to enable optimal student learning.

As 4th graders, we experienced the extreme heat in May 2013. Can you imagine being in a classroom with windows, which only open 4 inches at the top and ceiling fans, which are blowing hot, 96 degree air down upon you? We sat in our classroom hot, sweaty, no energy, couldn’t think, and tired. Our teachers looked and felt just  like us. Little to no learning took place in these conditions, which supports the research.

Making decisions on important issues is never easy. But we think, after careful consideration, you’d agree, Chickering School students and teachers need air conditioning in order to facilitate and support learning.

Presented by Jack, Rachel, Lele, Evan and Lena

* Op. Ed. – Opinion Editorial

“The Learning Style Inventory.” Bridges Transitions Incorporated.  2000-2006. Web. 16 May 2014 <>.
Pilcher, June J., Eric Nadler, and Caroline Busch. “Effects of hot and cold temperature exposure on performance: a meta-analytical review.” Ergonomics. 2002 Web. 16 May 2014.<>.
Tina. “Do Classroom Temperatures Affect a Student’s Ability to Learn?” Screenflex Blog. 5 September 2012. Web. 16 May 2014. <>.

6 thoughts on “Does Temperature Affect Learning?

  1. Dear Jack, Rachel, Lele, Evan and Lena,

    I want to compliment you on your excellent opinion piece about the need for air conditioning at Chickering School. You did a good job of supporting your point of view with evidence, and I like how you had links to the web sites so I could read the information for myself. Your video presentation was very well-narrated and persuasive, with a nice touch of humor! (Thanks for inviting me to be a part of it!) Lastly, I want to thank you for taking on this important topic, even though, as graduating fifth graders, you won’t get to enjoy the benefits of air conditioning in the school, should they decide to install it. I really appreciate your thinking of the needs of the teachers and the students who follow behind you. Great job!

    Mrs. Chiavarini

  2. Dear Jack, Rachel, Lele, Evan and Lena,

    Thank you for this post. I am very impressed by the research you quoted and the depth of knowledge you show. Before this post we thought that hot weather was detrimental to learning. Now we know that it is.

    I thought your video was very funny and it got your point across very clearly!

    Dr. Reinemann

  3. Dear Jack, Rachel, Lele, Evan, Lena,
    Very nice job on the video and writing. I loved the art and speech bubbles during the video. One thing I would suggest is maybe include a little bit more information about the research in the video. Other then that great job.

  4. Hello fellow 5th graders! I definitely agree with you. Summer heat is atrocious! Chickering needs air conditioning! I do suggest that you should tell this proposal to the school board, and hope for the best!


  5. I like how it tries to make the school have better air conditioner. I think that the video should have been longer. All and all, I think it was good.

  6. I really like it how you try to make school better by introducing air condition. Video duration is good. I am really thank for you to share valuable information with us

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