You’ve been there sitting in a long meeting. You are watching the clock move oh so slowly. You can’t wait to get up and move a bit. You can’t concentrate on anything because your legs are restless. That’s exactly what I am trying to avoid putting my little second graders through! Research has show that students may learn more when they are comfortable and are allowed to move a bit. That’s where flexible seating can help.
Flexible seating allows them to wobble, rock, bounce, lean or stand, which increases oxygen flow to the brain, blood flow and core strength.
You can help bring flexible seating to our class! My students are part of a Gifted/High Achieving Magnet Program in California. The children have earned their placement into the program due to their hard work and top grades. They come from various neighborhood cities. Some travel over an hour to get to school. The children thrive on challenges and are eager to discover the unknown. Unfortunately, my classroom’s furniture is literally from the 1970s. Hard, drab, uncomfortable seating.
No one wants to sit in a hard seat for hours on end. I would love to give the children options to choose how they best would learn throughout the day. Traditional desks can make students territorial or possessive over their space and supplies. Flexible seating encourages students to share both. And, it encourages them to take turns in different locations and with different seating options. Would a wobbly seat allow their bodies to sit up straight and focus? As I pull the kids in together in a small group, they could have the option of pulling up a stool or a stability ball to the table. Choice = Ownership
Flexible seating encourages students to find their best spot to stay calm, focused and productive.
Flexible seating allows students to quickly and easily pair up, work in small groups, or discuss as a whole class. It also requires introducing higher-order thinking skills, like problem-solving, and emotional skills, like conflict resolution.
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