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Some classrooms often require acoustic treatment, and this can either be done with the use of an an ACT grid, acoustic wall panels or both. If you want to soundproof different parts of a classroom for splitting students into groups, consider investing in soundproof classroom dividers.
Learn More: Soundproof Room Dividers for Open Floorplans
When to Use Soundproofing Room Dividers
As a teacher, you probably try to do something new and exciting during class every once in a while. This can mean taking a field trip, doing class outside, or even splitting the class up in two. When splitting up your class into groups around the room, it can get pretty loud, especially while students are working on an activity.
So how can you combat this problem? Some teachers choose to use stand-alone room dividers, but sound can just travel up and over or down and under something like that. To truly separate different groups of students around a room so that they can hear only people within their group, you need something that can effectively block sound from traveling.
How do Soundproofing Room Dividers Work?
A soundproof room divider is a cost effective and aesthetically pleasing way to create a private and quiet area for yourself in your home. Many people use soundproof room dividers within their homes to help separate open floor plans without shelling out the money for building extra walls. People will often do this when they work from home and need their own space, or if they have a doorway to their own area, but not a door.
When you first think of a room divider, you probably think of those old folding contraptions that people use to change behind in tv shows and movies. Because these are often not wall-to-wall or floor-to-ceiling, so sound is able to easily travel around these types of dividers. In order for a room divider to actually be soundproof, it must be made from the right materials, and must be the right size.
Any soundproofing curtain or room divider should be made using an STC rated material, or a material that is lab tested and proven to block sound. Many products like this are made using mass loaded vinyl, because it is a dense yet flexible material often used in commercial soundproofing projects.
How to Properly Install a Soundproofing Classroom Divider
An effective room divider for a classroom should ideally cut the room in half, making one room into two. As we talked about above, this can be especially beneficial when trying to section off a classroom for group work. When groups are separated during a classroom activity, it can allow for more privacy and quiet to be able to focus on the task at hand.
Depending on the desired layout of a room when divided, this will determine where you place your classroom divider. For any soundproof classroom divider, you’ll need to make sure it is available with a ceiling mounting mechanism. When choosing the size of the divider, you will essentially want to have it the exact height from floor-to-ceiling and the width of the room plus a couple inches. This way, the divider should touch the floor, ceiling and each wall to keep sound from traveling around it.
How to Use a Soundproof Classroom Divider
Unlike typical room dividers that are merely placed in an area of a room to “separate” it from another area, soundproofing room dividers are more like a large soundproofing curtain. Whenever you need to split the class up for group activities, simply move the curtain on the track, and make sure it extends wall-to-wall. Some soundproof room dividers, such as the AcoustiTrac soundproofing drape, even include a perimeter seal to prevent sound from traveling from one side of the classroom to the other when it’s in use.
Many schools and teachers have actually used the AcoustiTrac for this exact reason – they need to divide there classroom, and the divider needs to be able to block sound, and a new wall isn’t an option. In most cases, they’ve used soundproof classroom dividers to split up a classroom, but some schools in the past have actually needed to split one classroom into two temporarily while another classroom is being renovated.
When & How to Use the Right Soundproof Classroom Divider
Soundproof classroom dividers are best used when you plan on splitting up your class for group work. Using the divider can help keeps the groups separate, and allow them to work more effectively in a quieter area.
Keep in mind, if your classroom has an acoustic ceiling grid with ACT, you will not be able to hang a divider from it. Soundproof room dividers should only be hung from drywall or metal deck ceilings due to their weight.