Some fifth and third grade classrooms at Truman Elementary School are piloting the use of alternative seating options this fall. These include large round balls, floor carpeting, various chair cushions, and a tall table where students can sit on stools or choose to stand. By allowing students to have a choice of work stations, teachers hope to increase their engagement. The seating also promotes better student dialogue and collaboration.
“Student choice and voice is something we are really embracing as a school to increase our student engagement and build a stronger more collaborative school community,” explained Tammi Kuba, Principal.
After some initial excitement and exploring at the start of the new school year, students now realize the purpose of the various options and are choosing seating based on their learning preferences.
“When we adapt our learning spaces to be more creative and student-centered, we elevate student engagement which then increases student learning,” noted Kuba. “Flexible seating promotes collaboration, increases movement, and offers students preferences/choices for their personal learning needs. Some students learn best when they move, stand, or lay down on their tummy. Offering students choice and flexibility allows for them to choose where they learn best.”
Funding for the various seating options included grants and the Truman Parent Organization.