Students Learn Better When Wearing Slippers, Study Says

Category: Education/Family


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. receptive / rɪˈsɛp tɪv / (adj) – the quality of accepting an idea easily

    The students were not receptive to what the teacher said since they do not share his beliefs on the topic.

  2. at ease / ət iz / (adj) – feeling comfortable

    The new student felt at ease with his new classmates since they were very friendly.

  3. compulsory / kəmˈpʌl sə ri / (adj) – required

    Wearing IDs is compulsory for visitors.

  4. comply / kəmˈplaɪ / (v) – to follow

    Students are expected to comply with the school’s policies.

  5. uphold / ʌpˈhoʊld / (v) – to maintain

    Schools need to uphold a good reputation to retain students.


Read the text below.

Wearing slippers in class improves academic performance, study says.

Bournemouth [BOO RN-muh th] University professor Stephen Heppell conducted a study on the advantages of a shoeless environment to children’s learning. The study was done in 25 countries in a span of over 10 years. Results revealed that children who wore slippers in the classroom came to class earlier, left later, and studied more. For this reason, Emma Titchener, head teacher of Findern Primary School in the United Kingdom, proposed a shoeless policy in the classroom.

Teachers in Findern observed significant changes in their students’ behavior in class during the policy’s trial stage. Apart from being calmer and more receptive to learning, the students were more at ease during classes. Although the policy is not compulsory, most students still chose to comply.

Findern is one of the first schools in the United Kingdom to implement the policy, but schools in Europe, specifically in Scandinavian countries, have been enacting the policy for a long time. Schools in these countries likewise reported improved learning and behavior.

West Thornton Primary Academy in South Eastern England has also adopted a shoeless school environment by having several shoeless areas around the campus. According to Ayla Arli, a teacher in the academy, the implementation of the policy has shown favorable results and it has reduced noise levels in the school environment.

However, some parents criticized the initiative. One father said that school is a training ground for the professional world and one’s attire is part of upholding certain standards. He added that encouraging students to wear slippers to school may result in unrefined behavior and appearances.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• Do you support the idea of wearing slippers instead of shoes in class? Why or why not?
• What is the ideal appearance of students when attending classes?

Discussion B

• Do you agree that school is the best place to receive training for the professional world? Explain.
• Aside from school, where else can children receive training for the professional world? Discuss.