After reading the article titled “Rearranging the Classroom: Studying seating to Improve Learning,” in issue 5 of the Clarion, I was amazed, I had never considered that the way that a classroom is arranged could affect a student’s learning experience.
Then I started thinking about how my experiences are when sitting in a classroom of crammed rows that are perfectly aligned with each other, and my neck got sore just thinking about it.
I’m barely 5-foot-1, so even though I may be used to having to stretch for better views, doesn’t mean I should have to in every classroom I sit in.
But not even just for those that are vertically challenged, the angles that students sit in some desks just simply do not work no matter you or your neighbor’s height.
Then all of the focus is centered on how to be able to see the slide on the board versus what the notes actually say, so the lecture goes in one ear and out the other.
Even just trying to watch a teacher as they move from one end of the classroom to the other can be frustrating, and next thing you know you get tired of trying to keep up with them and suddenly your cellphone is in your lap.
There are some classes that are hard enough to pay attention or even stay awake in. The last thing student’s need is another reason to be distracted and less focused while in class.
Straight rows and small classrooms just aren’t conducive to the learning experience students should have. Auditorium seating allows for a good view for every student in every seat and sometimes just moving a desk over a foot or angling it a bit more can make a world of difference for a student.
The fact that there are studies being done to prove this new idea could change the arrangement of classrooms in all schools and especially for those like myself who are more ‘fun-sized,’ life in the classroom would be made that much easier and enjoyable.
Citrus College supporting this research shows just another way that our school is trying to support the best experience for it’s students, and it will be fascinating to see how the classrooms on campus rearrange to suit the findings of these studies.
As a student, I gladly welcome any sort of advancement to help make my educational career just a little bit easier and my neck a little less sore.