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Learning Environment

Making Your Classroom Flexible on the Cheap

The latest classroom trends call for flexibility, but budgets are still tight. Get that cool look and performance without new furniture.

The latest trends in classroom management and strategies call for a flexible classroom setup. Kids should be able to collaborate whenever they need to. But many teachers think you need the latest furniture to make those 21st-century dreams come true. Here’s how you get it done without breaking the budget.

Lots of pillow and cushions

In the era of tablets, who says students need a desk? As long as you leave some open space, students love working on the floor. Raid the local thrift store for as many pillows and cushions as you can find. Students can then arrange themselves for a variety of lessons or find a quiet corner when it comes time to study.

Lap desks

Students might not need to use traditional desks as often as they used to, but they still need to write occasionally. Binders and folders just aren’t effective for some types of writing scenarios. Lap desks are desktops with soft bottoms that are comfortable to use while sitting in a chair or on the floor. You can usually find them for under $20, which is a bargain compared to a new traditional desk.

Clear out some extra furniture

Sometimes the biggest barrier to flexibility in the classroom is simply having too much stuff around. If you’re a 1-to-1 or BYOD school, do you really need computer workstations? Are all of your desks used? If not, have facilities take out the items you don’t need. The extra space will allow the students a lot of ways to move around.

When you’ve gained some flexibility, use it to create an inspirational writing space or a fun math workshop that will power your students’ learning. If you have tried any of these ideas or have your own, leave your comments below. Let’s get the conversation going!


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