By Arwen Hann
- Child screams and impact on teacher and carer hearing "What did you say? I can’t hear you. I’m cuddling a circular saw!"
- When teachers and staff suspect hearing loss or ringing and buzzing in the ears - how to know if you have hearing loss, what you can do
- Practical things you can do to change the environment and manage and reduce noise levels
- The Hearing Status and Exposure to Noise of Early Childhood Staff Published in the: NZ Research in ECE Journal, Vol.12, 2009.
- Noise in early childhood centres and how safe is the noise? Published in the NZ Research in ECE Journal, Vol.8, 2005.
- A Kind of Serene Feeling Washing Over the Centre”: the Use of Background Music to Improve the Auditory Environment in an Early Childhood Centre Setting". Published in: The NZ Research in ECE Journal, Vol.10, 2007.
Your service's legal responsibilities
Noise is only to be expected in early childhood centres but dealing with loud noise on a day to day basis could be putting the hearing of early childhood teachers at risk.
The law requires that you must, so far as is reasonably practicable, make sure that no one is exposed to noise levels equivalent to 85 decibels averaged over 8 hours, or a peak noise level over 140 decibels.
This always applies, whether or not the adult or child is wearing hearing protection.
A study by two Massey University professors found significant numbers of teachers at early childhood centres were exposed to loud or excessively loud noise during their working day.
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