Active Seating: Can We Learn How to Move?

The pursuit to maximize a learning environment’s effectiveness is always going to be paramount.  In our modern society, active seating solutions has ascended to become a game-changer in addressing the topics of enhancing student engagement, reducing classroom distractions, and promoting collaborative work.  According to Edutopia (2015):

“Since implementing flexible classrooms, Albermarle County Public Schools have noticed that:

  • Their students’ grades have improved
  • Their students seem happier and more engaged
  • Their students are participating more and having more invigorating conversations”

However, politics and budgets often dictate whether a school will make the leap towards innovation or keep the traditional classroom status quo.  Investing in active seating furniture helps determine if it can benefit your students and teachers.  Active seating creates a fun, engaging, and productive atmosphere that helps students develop critical life skills such as focus and team work.  The Sit and Stand Student Desk by Luxor is an excellent introduction to active learning by providing a feature-rich desk standing desk solution for your students, thus keeping them engaged, while allowing you to determine if it’s something you can utilize in some or all of your classrooms.

Sit and Stand Student Desk by Luxor

Adaptable Active Seating

In addition to enhancing student engagement, many active seating solutions feature portability and a compact footprint since every classroom is different and lesson plans constantly change.  Classroom seating that can accommodate different student age groups helps a school maximize its classroom furniture budgetary expenditures.  The DOT Soft Seating Floor Stool by Balt is portable, lightweight, and can keep students engaged during floor activities such as music class, arts and crafts, watching educational films, and productive during study hall!

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21st Century Desks for 21st Century Learning

While we know it is not uncommon to hang on to traditional open front student desks due to budgetary constraints. There will come a time where dilapidated desks and evolving curriculum will create learning friction. As well as the law of diminishing return which are not conducive for the student learning environment.  A modern classroom desk contributes to critical student development which includes skills such as peer communication, teamwork, and adaptability that will be invaluable to students in their future careers.

When shopping for a modern student desk, here are three elements to help guide you in your search:

Modularity

It’s no secret that modularity is a common theme in today’s 21st century classroom furniture.

Student desks that can be reconfigured and easily moved are important for tentative lesson schedules that often change at the last-minute.

In addition, this modularity helps accommodate changing preferences (i.e. some teachers would like the classic individual desk row configuration while others want them grouped together).  The Method Polygon Table by Scholar Craft offers ample student work space with a modular footprint to help students get work done more efficiently.

Method Polygon Table by Scholar Craft

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Maximizing Classroom Dry Erase Boards

Dry erase boards have been around for decades, being utilized in academic learning environments as well as being a staple in company conference rooms.  However, modern innovations have improved the concept of “dry erase” to make group learning more efficient and accommodate changing situations for better productivity.  Having dry erase boards that complement each other ensures students can collaborate and visualize their ideas while allowing teachers to customize and adapt lesson plans for both group and individualized learning.

Here are several dry erase solutions to help guide in picking what’s right for your learning environment:

Wall-Mounted Dry Erase 2.0

While traditional dry erase whiteboards have eclipsed old chalkboards (which date back to the 19th century), there have been many recent advancements that make these boards better and better.  Some of these innovations include a frameless design to help utilize extra board space while providing an attractive and elegant appearance.  Materials such as porcelain-coated steel with aluminum help with mounting on a curved wall while minimizing dry erase ghosting after repeated use.  The Elemental Frameless Dry Erase Board by Best-Rite offers a wall-mounted dry erase board that also doubles as a projection screen that contributes to a seamless transition between lesson plans.

Elemental Frameless Dry Erase Board by Best-Rite

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How to Choose the Best Desks for Your School

While traditional school furniture can last for many years, they are not optimized for the 21st century changing learning environment.  Technology has quickly revolutionized the way students learn but unfortunately, student desks haven’t been as quick to catch up for several reasons.  This may be due to budgetary reasons since it’s normal for schools to maximize furniture expenditures.  Or it could be that many schools prefer traditional lesson plans and adopt a “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach.  The good news is that there are many options today that can help you find the right desk solution.  Having the right student desk promotes an optimal student learning experience, accommodates new lesson plan innovations, and contributes to a succinct and practical long-term budgetary expenditure.

Here are several factors to help you choose the best student desk:

Collaboration-Based Learning

Two critical skills that students need to learn for future success are communication and teamwork which are the themes of modern lesson plans.  This means you’ll want a student desk that can be easily configured for both individual and team-based assignments.  The Shapes Desk by Balt allows you to configure your classroom into several configurations including the traditional multiple row desk set up,  a round desk set up (up to 10), or square configuration.

Shapes Desk by Balt

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