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Integrating Kinesthetic Desks Into Classrooms

Rather than passively listening to a lecture or watching demonstrations, kinesthetic learning is a learning style in which learning is achieved while students carry out physical activities. Kinesthetic learners perform best in classroom environments where they can move, build, measure, jump, sing, and experiment. Learning, accompanied by physical actions, help them better process information into long-term memory. Typically, a kinesthetic child placed in a more traditional learning environment, will tend to be unsuccessful and/or unhappy. Where a stereotypical desk-and-lecture classroom inhibits their need for movement and activity.

Characteristics of kinesthetic learners:

  • Fidgety
  • Interruptive
  • Difficulty concentrating on passive assignments and lectures.
  • Zone out and/or daydream often during lectures.
  • Disruptive

While these characteristics may be very similar to those displayed in children diagnosed with ADHD. A child displaying kinesthetic learning preferences is not to be mistaken for a child with ADHD. To distinguish the two, a child with ADHD will still have difficulty focusing and sitting still even under kinesthetic learning situations. Whereas a kinesthetic child will settle down and focus on the task-at-hand under this type of learning environment.

Kinesthetic Classroom Furniture

what is kinesthetic learning

Kinesthetic classroom furniture enables kinesthetic learners to easily integrate movement into an otherwise sedentary activity. Classroom furniture conducive to kinesthetic learning can range anywhere from wobble stools and standing workstations, to striders and pedal desks for students. Kinesthetic desks let students channel their energy allowing them to stay focused on the task-at-hand, reducing fidgeting and classroom disruptions.

Kinesthetic desks are also appropriate for home-use placement, empowering children and adults alike to boost healthy exercise, converting sedentary time into physical activity. Bike desks can be integrated into time spent reading, playing video games, TV time, or as a replacement for a traditional office desk.

In addition to facilitating kinesthetic learning styles, kinesthetic classroom equipment will burn calories, improve cardiovascular health, and improve an overall state-of-mind.

Pedal Desks for Schools

The Unity bicycle desk, allows for both forward and backward pedaling and accommodates a wide range of user heights. The desks walk-thru design makes it easy to mount and dismount the bike without requiring assistance. The cordless, power-free design and transport wheels make it so the bike can be placed virtually anywhere and can be easily moved out of the way as needed. The Unity pedal desk for schools is the perfect way to facilitate kinesthetic learning, reducing fidgeting and classroom disruptions, while facilitating productivity and success.

pedal desk for students

In addition to a pedal desk, another option is a bike table or under desk peddler. Unlike a pedal desk, a bike table is designed to facilitate active collaboration between students, where two to three bikes are placed beneath one common table surface rather than one bike per desk. Another option, more similar to the Unity, is an under desk peddler which gives you the versatility of placing the bike underneath your own standing desk or raised table.

Schools Using Pedaling Desks in Classrooms

Ward Elementary in Winston-Salem, North Carolina has taken to the concept of introducing movement into the classroom. The Read and Ride program, which has now been adopted by 30+ schools, allows students to integrate pedaling into their otherwise sedentary reading time.

Click for more information on the Read and Ride program. 

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