August 22, 2014

To Assign or Not Assign...Seats That Is

I have always been a fan of table assignments.Why?

1- I know where my students are supposed to be, who is absent and can quickly get work passed out when students are in assigned groups(or tables).
2- It also avoids the social anxiety of cliques (think of the table hierarchy in the high school cafeteria...yea...not so fun) and someone is always being left out. I want my art room to be a safe place for kids to be and never want a student to have that feeling.
3-Another reason is behavior management. I can pair my struggling students up with some positive role models and help them make more positive choices with their behavior.
4- And don't forget modifications! Some students are required to have 'preferential seating' near the teacher.  You can meet that need without others picking up on the assigned spot. =)

So how does one assign seats for 400 students? I have the seating chart in my binder along with my attendance chart. I make this diagram on Word, but you can make it with any drawing/writing program. I also label other items around the room for subs to easily  navigate my room.
Then I use these super handy sticky flags from Staples. They run about $2 for 125 flags. They a semi-transparent and you can use them to color code too. Most importantly you can quickly rearrange students seats without needing a pencil and eraser! Fast, easy and simple.
These flags are pretty sticky, I can use them from one year to the next. I will sit down with my rosters, make new flags as needed, and arrange the table assignments by last name to start. I only assign by table, not by seat unless I have to. Then I adjust and make new table groups as needed. The students know the expectations from the get go and generally sit at there assigned tables without complaint. Students also know that if for any reason they don't want to sit in their assigned table they can sit at an independent desk or empty table (not move to a friend's table) or ask me for a new seat.

What is your vote? Assigned or Not?

1 comment:

  1. TO seating chart... It helps me learn names and maintain my sanity. Check out my new "start of the year" seating chart that is working great.


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