Sparta Education Foundation

Sparta, New Jersey

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Can You Hear Me Now? Alpine School Receives 8k for Sound Amplification System

Posted Thu, Jan 5th, 2012 The Sparta Independent

Alpine School Principal Michael Gregory, teacher Shannon Sullivan, and students Evan and Erin demonstrate the new sound amplification system

The Sparta Education Foundation recently approved an $8,000 grant to equip classrooms at Alpine School with a sound amplification system.

As explained by Principal Michael Gregory, good classroom acoustics are fundamental. A variety of noises can compete with the teacher, which contribute to poor hearing conditions and cause teachers to raise and strain their voices, resulting in fatigue to the teacher and loss of comprehension to the student. Studies have shown that students need to hear individual sounds clearly to learn how to read and spell, which is directly related to comprehension.

The goal of the amplification system is to raise the teacher's voice to about 15 decibels throughout the entire classroom. A lanyard containing the microphone is worn around the neck. The volume can be controlled from the lanyard, giving the teacher ultimate control. Speakers are mounted throughout the classroom and have a wireless connection, which reduces the hazard of exposed cables and wires. Benefits of a sound amplification system include improvements in academic achievement, classroom environment, and teacher health.

"I love having the sound-field in my classroom," says teacher Shannon Sullivan. "It helps to keep the students focused during instruction because it amplifies my voice over any background noise. The students also love to use the sound-field when reading aloud and sharing with the rest of the class!"

If students do not hear a question, they are less likely to volunteer an answer. With the new sound amplification systems, teachers report that they are spending less time repeating questions and directions and that their students are less distracted from other noises in the classroom. Students now spend more time on task instead of paying attention to other factors in the classroom.

Lukas Hein, a student at Alpine says, "I think they are great because if my teacher didn't have the microphone, she would have to raise her voice a lot. Now she doesn't have to do it because her voice is already loud. I also like the microphone and we get to use it sometimes."

For more information about the Sparta Education Foundation including event sponsorship opportunities, volunteering, or how to make a donation, visit the Sparta Education Foundation’s website, or call the foundation at 800-905-7331.


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Grants Donated :

  • 5 Rowing Machines for Physical Education Department,   6/6/17   $4,375
  • 8 Sound Systems for Audio Amplification,   6/6/17   $11,587
  • Year 2 of Chromebooks,   6/6/17   $62,277

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