Actions of primary school teachers to improve the indoor environmental quality of classrooms in the Netherlands

Dadi Zhang*, P.M. Bluyssen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
132 Downloads (Pure)


Indoor environmental quality (IEQ) in classrooms can have an effect on school children’s comfort, health, and performance. In most classrooms, the teacher is the only one who can take actions to change the IEQ. The objective of this study was to identify what teachers usually do to improve IEQ in classrooms and how these actions relate to children’s comfort perceptions. A survey was carried out among 1145 school children (9–12 years) in 21 primary schools (54 classrooms) in the Netherlands. Every child filled out a questionnaire about their comfort perception and every teacher filled out a questionnaire about their IEQ-improving actions and school children’s requests to change the IEQ. The relations among children’s comfort perceptions, their requests, and teachers’ actions were analysed through t-tests and chi-squared tests. The most common action conducted by teachers was opening windows because of the ‘too warm’ complaints. Correspondingly, the most frequent request of the children was opening/closing windows because of thermal discomfort. However, the teachers’ actions did not have a significant impact on children’s comfort perceptions, which means that teachers could not fulfil every child’s needs in a classroom, even though teachers’ actions did relate to the child’s requests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-115
Number of pages13
JournalIntelligent Buildings International
Volume13 (2021)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Children’s perceptions
  • children’s requests
  • indoor environmental quality
  • primary school classrooms
  • teachers’ actions


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