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Friday, March 15, 2019

7 Benefits of Flexible Classrooms That Encourage Movement and Play

Photo by Tom Woodward (Flickr)

My younger daughter came home from school today with exciting news about her classroom. The teacher decided to implement a flexible classroom setting that will include standing tables, sofas, reading rugs, and exercise balls. The students are looking forward to the open and welcoming atmosphere, and I like the idea, too. Flexible classrooms promote movement and play during the day, and these educational environments can offer important benefits to our children.

Empower Students

We want to raise our kids to become independent thinkers and problem-solvers who take ownership of their education. Let's cultivate these important skills in a flexible classroom where our kids can choose where to sit based on their needs. Students experience fewer distractions, more productivity, and more empowerment when they take responsibility for their educational success.

Boost Academic Performance

As a parent, I focus more on learning than grades, but grades are important. I've noticed that a variety of factors, including the classroom environment, subject matter, and educational stimulation, can boost our kids' academic achievement. Flexible classrooms nurture these factors and support our kids' motivation to learn.

Enhance Collaboration

In the real world, our kids must work well with others. We teach them how to collaborate, share, and build a community when we provide flexible classroom environments. Instead of feeling possessive about a desk and their personal space, kids learn to work together as they negotiate seating arrangements and interact with classmates from their standing desks, soft chairs, and floor mats.

Encourage Physical Exercise

Traditional classroom settings include hours of sitting, which can hinder our kids' academic performance and overall health and wellness. We improve alertness, focus, and behavior when we encourage our kids to exercise and move often during the day. Flexible classrooms encourage our kids to rock, bounce, lean, stand, and wiggle. These movements boost mental sharpness and help our kids perform better in school.

Improve Comfort

Uncomfortable classrooms distract students and hinder their ability to listen to the teacher, understand concepts, and retain information. Alternatively, we create a comfortable, calm, and engaging learning environment when we implement flexible seating. Our kids are more likely to listen and learn and less likely to feel anxious or stressed when they feel comfortable in their classroom.

Promote Fun

I know school is a serious endeavor for our kids, and I want my girls to work hard when they're in school. But most of the parents and teachers I know want children to be happy at school, too. Happy and excited kids become enthusiastic learners who engage with the material and retain information more easily. We encourage fun and engagement when we implement flexible classroom environments with exciting, new, and unique seating arrangements and learning opportunities.

Customize Configurations

My teacher friends tell me that the dynamics of every class change based on the students and the subject. Flexible classrooms allow teachers and students to maximize their classroom space and daily lessons based on the students' needs and preferences. This flexibility helps kids succeed.

The flexible classroom my daughter will soon enjoy at school can improve her educational experience. I welcome this change because it promotes movement and play in addition to these seven benefits. How else would your children benefit from flexible classrooms?

Find more about the author: Kim Hart

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