Flexible Seating In A 21st Century Classroom

BLUFFTON, Sc. (WSAV) — It’s a nationwide trend that allows kids a little bit of wiggle room to help stay focused on schoolwork and it’s changing classrooms right here in the Lowcountry.

“Flexible seating is just about giving students’ choice about where they sit, and then giving lots of different ways if they want to stand up and learn or sit down, lay on the floor, wobble around while they’re learning, they can have that freedom to do that,” said Bree Trott, a teacher at Pritchardville.

Mrs. Trott’s 3rd grade class is one of three at Pritchardville Elementary that practices flexible seating.

“With the desks, it was constant movement they’re climbing up out of their desks or they’re standing up, they’re pushing their chairs over, they wanted to move so badly into a position they were comfortable but, they couldn’t do it,” Trott said.

Pritchardville’s principal, Brenda Blu, says the three classrooms that practice flexible seating – have entirely eliminated behavior issues. Which Trott says has a lot to do with giving an child the freedom to choose.

“A little bit of freedom is a big deal for them, because they’re 8, they don’t get a lot of choices in life,” Trott said, “Their grades have definitely improved. They’re more focus on their work, because they can move away from maybe somebody who’s being distracting or they can stand up if they feel they need to stand up.”

For parents, it makes a difference at home too.

“As a parent of a student in a flexible seating classroom, i see a lot of benefits at home as well as what they’re doing here in  school — i think when they sit down to do their homework, it’s a lot less intimidating of oh no i have to sit down again and do more work,” said Karyn Matejewski.

And with more increasing curriculum standards every year, Trott says flexible seating is important for these kids.

“What they used to do in kindergarten is now Pre-K, there’s not creative play, no let’s build with blocks or play in the play kitchen. We don’t have time to do that because of the standards, so any time we can build in movement in the day is a good thing for them,” she said.

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