Sunday, January 7, 2018

9 Awesome High School Flexible Seating Classrooms


There are a TON of images and ideas out there for flexible classroom seating. In this post, I will focus only on high school classrooms. 

While I'm not in the classroom anymore, I still enjoy thinking about classroom design based on brain research and the infusion of technology in the classroom.

See the end of this post for what flexible seating IS and what it is NOT, by Betsy Lancy, from her blog, All Kinds of Learning Adventures.  

Here are the nine awesome classrooms, in no particular order... Get inspired!





Flexible seating high school classroom



















Thinking of trying flexible seating in your classroom? Put these items on your wish list or list of garage sale look-fors: (The links below are affiliate links. If you purchase from a link, I make a small income to support this blog.) 


A flexible seating environment is NOT:

  • A special chair designated as a treat or reward
  • A reading corner with a few bean bags
  • Replacing all the chairs in the classroom with a class set of yoga balls
  • The same thing as “personalized learning”
  • A new fad — Montessori schools have been using these concepts for years
Instead, flexible seating environments:

  • Provide all students with choices about to sit (or stand)
  • Can be reconfigured quickly and easily
  • Involve a wide variety of seating types
  • Uses the physical environment of the classroom to improve learning
  • Are grounded in research about classroom design

Have you tried or are you thinking of trying flexible classroom seating? Share you thoughts in the comments below or connect with me on twitter


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14 comments:

  1. So with limited resources (the chairs we had), I offered my class to rearrange the room anyway they so choose. They could have the option of sitting on the floor, standing, sitting at a chair, sitting together, or alone or in any combination. After brainstorming for a class period, they choose to stay in the formation they were originally (small groups sitting with desks). Their choice, not mine. However, I don't have seat options available. We only have hard desk chairs available. If I find some good options, at a reasonable price, I will pick them up.

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    Replies
    1. Kudos to you for working with what you have and asking students to create their space to fit their needs! I hope you were inspired by some of the things in this post!
      Jennifer

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  2. Thank you so much for including me in this post! I love seeing flexible seating implemented successfully at the secondary level. These are some great examples!

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    1. Thank YOU for your great and thoughtful post on flexible seating - what is IS and, maybe more importantly, what it is NOT. These are some terrific examples that inspire me each time I look at the photos. :-)
      Best,
      Jennifer

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  3. It looks really nice, but I don’t understand how it would function in practice? Laptops, writing essays by hand, taking notes? It would be brilliant for reading, discussion, sharing, watching media and research. My mind is stuck in the classrooms I have seen all my life (and loved as a student) give me a new perspective. Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Laptops are easy to use without a desk, and lapdesks come in handy for 1:1 schools. Clipboards are convenient and some students like using them. I myself prefer to sit straight up (not slouched) with a flat surface (like a table), but I know my daughters and students prefer something else. I think it's about having choices for different students. Thanks for reading and commenting!
      Jennifer

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  4. Thank you for including me!!! I am so excited! And I got a ton of ideas from the other ones you posted! Pinterest can only take us so far! Thanks again!

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    1. I love your room, Brit, and I bet your students do, too. I can't wait to follow your journey and read at the end of the school year what your kids (and you) thought of the new seating!
      Best,
      Jennifer

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  5. These images really helped me, thank you! I am at the beginning stages of planning how flexible seating can work in my classroom. I teach 6 classes of history every day, so I need the furniture to be functional and durable, but lightweight for movement. I also have to have up to 34 spaces available, so I'm having a hard time trying to envision how I can have enough seating for everyone in my limited space. Are the couches workable? I do worry about kids sitting that close to each other, but really like the look of rooms with couches. I've had a recent donation of three Big Joe bean bags, so they are my first step to flexible seating. I'm excited, but still trying to keep the terror from outweighing the excitement. Thank you helping me to visually see how it might be done.

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  6. I would totally want to try these in my classes but our school is government-financed and ironically it is not well-financed. I just can't get those various chairs using my own money. :( I will still try to do this at least little by little in my own means

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  7. Thanks for including me! I love seeing others’ classrooms as well since I am always look for new ideas and constantly changing my classroom!

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  8. Do you find that students treat this furniture with more "respect"? I have tables and chairs in my room and I'm always finding gum and other things stuck under the table, writing on the tables, you get the idea. I know I would be really heartbroken if I invested my time and money to do this and items were ruined.

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  9. I teach high school science (Chemistry and Physics) and I have a designated lab area that is in the back of the classroom. In the front of the classroom are traditional desks and chairs (although the desks seat 2 people and can flip and move because they are on rollers). I love the look, but I'm unsure about how to create a flexible setting in the front of the room.

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  10. Hey! I would LOVE to see someone's information on how to introduce this to your students. I want so much to try this in my high school Spanish classes, but I just can't make the jump. Any suggestions/help would be GREATLY appreciated!

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