My students are self-motivated and hard working. They overcome challenges each day that bring them the feeling of success and purpose. We have focused on the power we gain when we realize that our shortcomings and flaws are actually what make us stronger. My students are learning to accept their challenges, and allow others to help them.
My students know that they are not preparing for “something,” but rather, they are preparing themselves for ANYTHING.” They are proactive in their learning, they cultivate their passions through perseverance, and they view failures as an opportunity to grow and gain perspective.
My students enjoy working together as a team to problem-solve. They support and build up one another. My students enjoy collaborating and finding new ways to learn concepts. They are fun-loving children, who strive to do their best!
The goal of flexible seating is to better engage my students and empower them with choices by providing diverse seating options. Seating arrangements will facilitate student-centered, collaborative learning, foster a positive learning community, and promote healthy, kinesthetic learning.
Flexible seating is part of a shifting educational paradigm and a revision of my own teaching philosophy to support more student-directed, 21st-century learning.
There is high value to choices, and trusting my students with the power to make those choices leads to better academic and behavioral outcomes. I am preparing students to be contributing members of society in the ever-changing “real world,” which is full of choices. Flexible seating encourages students to find what works best for them as individual learners with different needs and preferences. The ownership and responsibility fostered by this kind of classroom redesign decreases disruptive behaviors that often occur with traditional, restrictive seating.
In addition to benefiting the average restless child, flexible seating will accommodate my many kinesthetic learners with higher sensory needs. Different seating arrangements will allow students to channel their energy while working. According to Dr. Matthew T. Mahar’s research published in the Official Journal of the American College of Sports Medicine, purposeful physical activity in the classroom improved on-task behavior.
Our ever-changing, increasingly digital society demands learners who can adapt. Students must be flexible, and I hope my classroom can be, too.
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