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Ms. Lissak’s Classroom Edit display name

  • John H McKnight Middle School
  • Renton, WA
  • More than half of students from low‑income households

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Picture this: lamps with warm lighting next to teeming bookshelves, glowing lanterns hanging overhead, and soft music playing in the background as you settle in to read a just-right book. Sounds like a cozy cafe instead of a middle school classroom, right? Except "settling in" means sitting in a stiff chair at a hard and cramped desk. Something is missing, and for our classroom it is flexible seating options. I want my students to love reading, but how can I expect them to enjoy it when they are forced to read in an unnatural environment? As an adult, part of the appeal of reading is finding a comfortable space to nestle into an imaginary world; we don't often choose to sit in a plastic, straight-backed chair to do so. Right now, my students see reading as a forced, uncomfortable experience, but I want to show them it can be enjoyable and begin creating lifelong habits. This is where flexible seating comes in: they should have a choice in where they sit and how, depending on what works best for them. Besides encouraging good reading habits, flexible seating also teaches students how to make positive choices that support their learning. And by making a choice, students are buying into and engaging with their learning in new ways. Help me give my students more choice and control over their learning.

About my class

Picture this: lamps with warm lighting next to teeming bookshelves, glowing lanterns hanging overhead, and soft music playing in the background as you settle in to read a just-right book. Sounds like a cozy cafe instead of a middle school classroom, right? Except "settling in" means sitting in a stiff chair at a hard and cramped desk. Something is missing, and for our classroom it is flexible seating options. I want my students to love reading, but how can I expect them to enjoy it when they are forced to read in an unnatural environment? As an adult, part of the appeal of reading is finding a comfortable space to nestle into an imaginary world; we don't often choose to sit in a plastic, straight-backed chair to do so. Right now, my students see reading as a forced, uncomfortable experience, but I want to show them it can be enjoyable and begin creating lifelong habits. This is where flexible seating comes in: they should have a choice in where they sit and how, depending on what works best for them. Besides encouraging good reading habits, flexible seating also teaches students how to make positive choices that support their learning. And by making a choice, students are buying into and engaging with their learning in new ways. Help me give my students more choice and control over their learning.

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About my class

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