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February 14, 2024

Empowering Students with Wise Seating Choices

Classrooms that incorporate student choice are rewarding learning environments. Research confirms that students have fewer behavior problems, feel more connected, and exhibit less time off-task when they can make choices about where and what they learn. With the right guidance, even young students can learn to make wise seating choices—allowing you to leave traditional seating charts behind.

Children won’t magically know what a wise seating choice is, so it’s up to the teacher to guide students and provide reminders. A wise seating choice is one where neighbors will encourage them to work and give them a helping hand when they need it. An unwise choice might lead to distractions or arguments.

When students do have an issue (which is bound to happen), addressing the issue together builds problem-solving skills and encourages communication.

Choices like these teach students valuable lessons about how they learn best and collaborate to build a classroom environment that works for everyone. Teachers who adopt choice-based seating say it takes time, but it is worth the effort.

Reflection Question:
How does encouraging students to make a wise seating choice increase ownership of their own behavior?
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