Wednesday, March 29, 2017

How I Implemented Flexible Seating

In 2015, I started seeing classrooms being transformed through flexible seating.  I loved the learning spaces and the number of benefits for students, but I was nervous to try it in my own classroom for many reasons.  My biggest fear was that I would lose control of my class and there would be a lack of structure.  I was wrong.  Once you get started, you will never go back!  I feel students are more engaged due to having various work spaces.

What seating options do I have in my classroom?
-Hokki Stools (5)
-Crate seats (5)
-Floor table
-Standing table
-Scoop rockers (6)
-Lap desk (2)
-Wobble cushions (4)
-Regular table with chairs

I tried bouncy bands and stability balls in my classroom, but my students were not a fan.

I am fortunate to work at a school that supports and encourages flexible seating so I did not have to spend much.  On my own I purchased the crate seats, scoop rockers, and lap desk.
Hokki Stools
Scoop Rockers.  I recommend Kindergarten or First Grade students using these.
Wiggle Cushion.  I love these because there are many uses: on a chair, at floor table, or working/sitting at the carpet.  You can purchase these on Amazon.
Crate Seat.  I have 5 at my kidney table.  I love that they can also double as storage!

How to get started in the classroom
Purchase HERE
This product also contains mini anchor chart with expectations for each type of seating.

I used this clip chart for the first month of school.  I had clothespins with each student's name so they could make their seat choice.  At the beginning of the school year I went in alphabetical order and students select their seating option for the next day.  You rotate so everyone will have the opportunity to pick first.  Once everyone had the opportunity to pick their seat first, I gradually released and took away the clip chart.  
I wanted to make sure students could experience all types of seating to figure out where they could do their best learning.  I taped a picture of how to use each seat correctly, which was a great way to involve students.   Take a picture of students using the seat the correct way and use as a review throughout the school year.  

How did I explain flexible seating to parents?
At Kindergarten meet the teacher night, I provided a brochure that contains information about flexible seating and what it looks like in our classroom.  From my experience, I received all positive reactions from families and families touring my school.  I never had a parent express uncertainty.
Purchase editable brochure HERE

How did I set up rules for students to follow for appropriate use?
This photo was taken from inside the brochure.  (same as shown above)

If you use flexible seating in your classroom, what other options do you have?

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