Tuesday, August 15, 2017

New Year, New Goals: The Standing Desk


I am just a few days into the new school year and I am already loving some of the big changes I made this summer. I am hoping this momentum lasts because right now my classroom feels energized, positive, and creative when students are in the room.

The Standing (& Rolling) Desk



I am obsessed. It all came about because I wanted to make sure I was more engaged with my students during class. We teach on block schedule and I found myself sitting more than I liked during class last year. It made it so students had to come to me for help and I felt like that made the classroom focused on me as the teacher and not as focused on the students as I wanted my room to be. I want my students to never feel uncomfortable asking questions, when I am sitting behind a giant desk are they as willing to raise their hand and call me over?

I noticed a few other teachers had standing desks but I just couldn't justify spending money on something I wasn't 100% sure about, what if I needed to sit at my desk to get information for a student? What if I needed to deal with confidential information?

Then a neighbor was getting rid of an old projector cart and the plan was formed. I put a document camera, my clipboard, a pencil cup, and my surface tablet on top and all papers I need throughout class on the bottom shelves. It rolls around smoothly and is small enough to move between seating areas. I also got a wireless mouse to plug into my desktop computer so I can easily control what is projected on the screen in my class (it is still linked to my desktop computer but I want to find a way to link it to my Surface).

My legs are killing me but it has been awesome. My old desk faces the wall now, freeing quite a bit more space for students to work. Because it faces the wall, if I were sitting in it, my back would be to my students so there is zero desire for me to return to that seat during class but I still have a workspace for my prep period.

I am not stationed in one area in class, I am able to move locations through class as students are working or as I am presenting instructions or content, and while it might just be because it's the first few days of school, my classroom feels more energized. Having my tablet on top of the cart allows me to still follow up with urgent e-mails, submit attendance, and handle confidential student information without students seeing.

It seems like a silly little change when I first tell people about it but I love the ability to move around the room more freely and be more available to my students. I feel more engaged in my classes because I don't have an escape behind the desk.

Later this week, I plan to share how my first few days of flexible seating are going. Are you trying anything new with your classes?

- Mrs. Byars

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