Monday, August 6, 2012

Classroom Management Monday- Seating Arrangements

Hi everyone....I am actually blogging from my classroom today! I came in to get my room unpacked and start a little organizing. The first thing I noticed when I walked in was my cluster of desks and chairs right in the middle of my classroom.

This got me thinking about desk arrangement. This is always a challenge and it never stays the same. I am honestly not sure how I am going to arrange my desks for the start of this class year. I do have an advantage over most of the teachers in my building...because I am looping with my class from last year, I know my students very well already. I know their personalities and I know who gets along (and doesn't) with each other. This should make come up with a seating plan pretty simple...or at least you would think!

I am not sure yet which arrangement I am going to start out with the desks in rows, in clusters or a horseshoe for the first days or weeks of year. I think each year I have done something different. I do one student with an IEP that requires special seating considerations. I also have some chatty ones, several with ADD and a few who like to be disruptive from time to time (is it too much to ask to hope they have grown out of that over the summer?). And then there are a few that need constant encouragement from me, due to lack of motivation (on their part).

 I have 19 on my roster right now but that can (and will) change. So right now my plan is to do rows of 4-5 desks side by side. I can put my student with an IEP in the first row. My disruptive kids can do on the ends, minimizing their contact with others. I will also put my friends who are motivationally challenged on the front row too so I can see what they are doing and help keep them on task as well as give them praise when they are on task, and a little encouragement when they are not.

So how do you arrange your classroom...I would love to hear your ideas and suggestions!


  1. I always sit my kids in groups for the beginning of school. I tend to use the U and rows when I can't take their arguing anymore, but mostly I stick to groups with a few islands here and there. It sounds like you know your class really well though, and rows might just be the perfect way to start. Then you can figure out who grew up a little over the summer and go from there. Good luck!

    The Teaching Thief

  2. I like to think my kids can handle groups at the beginning of every year. That is what I will try again this year.

    If that doesn't work out, they I move on to the horseshoe/u shape. It is still kind of groups, but less stimulation from all around.

    Teaching in an Organized Mess

  3. My all time favorite is a U (horse shoe) shape with a few loners in the middle and a couple pairs off to the side. I have 26 kids this year, and had to get more desks, so I think I'm just starting with all the desks facing forward in pairings of two or there, because I don't know my kiddos, I can still walk around easily and they're still in partnerships. We'll see how that goes?

  4. I always start with groups-I try to do a lot of cooperative group activities to build community and this seating arrangement makes it easier. However, I have looped from 4th to 5th before also-it was the best two years ever-if you think they'll be too comfortable with each other and too talkative, I'd set them up in pairs. If you want to do a group activity, the front pairs can turn to the pairs behind them and form quads. I'm excited to be your newest follower-I'd love for you to visit my new blog and follow me!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching