Classroom Management

Flexible Seating

I teach 5th grade, which means I need to incorporate a lot of movement into my days. Very rarely are my students sitting at their desks for a long period of time. A few years ago my team wrote a grant and received money to purchase some alternative seating options. We bought several types of chairs and a few standing desks.

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Since then I have purchased additional seats and I have to be honest, I kind of hate them. I know, I know, flexible seating is the in thing right now and they look really cool. HOWEVER students were constantly fighting over which chair they got to use, there was furniture everywhere, and chairs were breaking left and right.

Going into this school year I knew I needed to do something different, so this year I have gotten my desk chairs back, and placed the alternative seating options at various work stations around the room. This eliminates the problem of the chairs being moved around the classroom which makes things safer. Since my kids are allowed to work wherever they are comfortable, they’re still able to use the flexible seating options as they are intended.

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This table has small yoga balls (being honest- I bought these thinking they were big and was pissed when they came in and were so small). The custodian showed me how to lower the table legs so they could be used safely and this has quickly become a favorite work spot in the room.

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This table has ball chairs which my kiddos love. These were causing the most drama in my class because they are on wheels so basically they were just scooting around the room on them/having chair races. Management NIGHTMARE. Now that they are stationed at one table, that isn’t happening this year. *so far. Fingers crossed*

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The accordion chairs at my back table look like something out of a Dr. Seuss book. They have a little wiggle to them but they are pretty sturdy.

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There are 6 large yoga balls that can be used on the rug. Students switch off using these daily. My students are numbered alphabetically by last name, so we just rotate through which range uses them day to day. Today numbers 7-12 got to use them.

In addition to stationing these chairs, I had each student sign a “chair contract”. A part of the contract outlined that students would be responsible for replacing any chair that they damage which has eliminated the problem of broken chairs so far this year.

That’s what seating looks like in 5S!

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