A recent article on the National Education Association website has the title “Standing Desks Are Helping Students Think on Their Feet”. It discussed the benefits for students of not being passively confined to a sitting posture for long stretches of time. The alternative is a standing desk; these are also growing in popularity among office workers.
There are a number of advantages to standing desks, and the overall result is better engagement and learning behaviors from students. With standing desks:
- There is more blood flow to the brain.
- Students pay more attention to the teacher.
- There is less disruptive behavior.
- Students burn more calories.
- It promotes fidgeting, which helps students to focus.
- It helps ameliorate ADHD.
Teachers who have had trials with standing desks for their students want to keep these in their classrooms. Here’s a short video report from ABC News on one teacher’s experience in Minnesota. According to one of her students – “It helps me stay a little more active, and awake”.
According to Texas A&M Associate Professor Mark Benden, “Basically it comes down to a blood sugar issue… you think better on your feet!”
As Roland Rotz and Sarah Wright, authors of the book Fidget to Focus, state, “Increasing blood flow to the brain through movement is important, as studies show that learning is a multisensory event, and that by engaging all the senses we can increase the likelihood of students retaining the lessons they are learning”.
What do you think? Have you tried having students stand more in the classroom? If so, have you seen benefits from that?