North Middletown Elementary began their school year by trying "Flexible Seating" in their classrooms this year. Students have alternate type seating rather than the traditional desk/tables with chairs. Students have a choice of sitting on stools; floor pillows; inflatable balls; chairs around a dinner table; bucket chairs; carpet areas etc. Teachers are very excited to try flexible seating and have researched all summer on the benefits.
Teachers at NMES realize that the classroom environment should be conducive to open collaboration, communication, creativity and critical thinking. This is hard to achieve when students are sitting in rows at desks. Teachers at North Middletown Elementary are allowing students to choose their best spot for learning in hopes of keeping students engaged longer. Studies show that students are empowered when they have an opportunity for choice and become more successful academically. Students also understand that the teacher reserves the right to move them from their choice spot if they aren't fully engaged and able to work with their peers.
by Gail Mullins