Active seating (aka flexible seating) is all the rave in the academic furniture community. The idea that all students are comfortable in the same type of environment is definitely antiquated. Teachers want students to learn in an environment where they are comfortable and most open to their instruction. The best way to accomplish this is through a variety of options for where and how they do their work. A solid active seating arrangement helps to maximize both student learning potential and your school’s furniture expenditures while creating a fluid and dynamic learning environment for changing curriculum.
Here are several ideas to help guide you through your active seating search:
Adaptive Desks for Adaptive Chairs
One way to keep your students engaged is by providing a standing height table solution to complement active seats. The Apex Series Double Student Stand-Up Desk by Marco Group provides a standing height table that is sturdy and easy to move. In addition, it offers ample space to study and take notes, supports a dry-erase option, and is height-adjustable to accommodate sit or stand learning preferences.
There is no doubt that classrooms have evolved in the last few decades. Today’s students are just as likely to spend a class period collaborating with a group, working with technology, or teaching a “flipped” lesson as they are to listen to a lecture. As our learning practices have changed, so should our classroom environment. One learning core aspect is the student’s seating solution. Flexible seating is one way that school administrators and teachers have begun to adapt the classroom space to meet all students’ needs. Having a comfortable and flexible seating solution not only helps maintain student focus but also allows your classroom to remain fluid with the continuous evolution of learning best practices.
Here are several flexible seating solutions to help your students maximize their learning potential:
Rocking Around the Classroom
For early childhood and elementary school learning environments, rocking chairs have been gaining popularity as a classroom seating option. Floor rockers are an excellent addition to any classroom library or small group workspace. The Zuma Floor Rocker, available in two sizes, allows students to rock back and forth silently while reading or working. What better way to help students develop a love of reading?
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.
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!
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:
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.