ATLANTA /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – With the back-to-school season in full swing, the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI) recently announced the debut of its first-ever animated online school tour. This interactive Web tool allows users to take a virtual "walk through" of a school building and learn about common sources of indoor air pollution and its effects on student and teacher health. The tool also provides simple solutions for minimizing pollutants and creating healthier, more productive educational environments.
"Studies have shown that more than half of all schools in the U.S. suffer from poor indoor air quality, which is a major contributor to health problems like asthma," says Dr. Marilyn Black, GEI founder. "This is significant because asthma is a condition that accounts for 14 million missed school days each year. By giving parents, teachers, facility managers, and administrators a visual tool to help evaluate their school's indoor air quality, we can help them create healthier school buildings that promote learning, comfort, and well-being."
The computer-generated school begins in a classroom setting, where grade-school children are seated at their desks for a lesson on indoor air quality (IAQ). Users can point and click on each of the topics listed on the classroom whiteboard to learn more. Once they click, they will be "transported" to other areas of the school, where they can explore the relationship between school IAQ and student health, the benefits of improving school IAQ, the role a school's HVAC system plays in IAQ, and ways to minimize indoor air pollution. Users can even test their IAQ knowledge by taking a complementary online quiz.
"As with our recently released animated home tour, we really wanted to make the notion of indoor air quality more palpable," says Henning Bloech, executive director of the GEI. "It's a rather abstract concept to begin with, so coming up with innovative ways to illustrate it is important. We hope both virtual tours accomplish that goal."
The animated school, officially unveiled today, is available for "tours" on the GREENGUARD website at http://greenguard.org/en/healthierschools.aspx. GEI encourages school facility managers, teachers, parents, community leaders, and green building and design professionals to use the virtual school as an educational tool.
About the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI)
The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute aims to protect human health and improve quality of life by enhancing indoor air quality and reducing people's exposure to chemicals and other pollutants. As an ISO-IEC Guide 65:1996 accredited, third-party organization, the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute certifies products and materials for low chemical emissions and provides a resource for choosing healthier products and materials for indoor environments. All certified products must meet stringent chemical emissions standards based on established criteria from key public health agencies. GREENGUARD Certification is broadly recognized and accepted by sustainable building programs and building codes worldwide. For more information and a complete listing of certified products, visit www.greenguard.org.
Source: GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (www.greenguard.org)
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