Mathematics.... usually this class consists of timid students who are fearful of being wrong. However, my students have developed a classroom culture that welcomes mistakes. They thrive on learning from their mistakes and enjoy when they are able to have a few a-ha moments during a class period.
My students persevere through any challenge given to them as a small community.
They like to collaborate in small groups, discuss ideas as a whole class and even enjoy the challenge of showing what they are capable of as an individual. They are creative, positive and hardworking.... and they need an environment to support their fullest capabilities. They need an environment that will allow them to enhance their unique learning styles. They need an environment that gives them a choice about how they learn the content.
My math students enter daily knowing that they are expected to explore different concepts and learn in an inquiry-based environment. They are expected to accept and grow from their mistakes or the mistakes of their classmates. They are expected to be respectful of all ideas that are discussed and are expected to share their own ideas. They are expected to grow as a whole class, not only by the teacher, but also by each other.
Choosing how they work- whether that means at a standing desk, on the floor with a lap desk, or even at a high top table- allows the students to do this.
Students should have the opportunity to discover how they learn best, after all, they are the ones expected to leave the classroom knowing the math! Flexible seating creates this choice and supports this classroom culture- education is not a one size fits all, and the classroom seating should not be either.
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