Standing vs. Sitting—For Kids

Part 3: Kids need standing desks at school

So far in this series, we’ve covered how standing and moving more than sitting helps children maintain good overall health and how it helps them achieve more in their academics.

In addition to having our own children spend more time standing and moving while at home, we can also make a difference in the health of our communities by encouraging more standing and moving at school.

Last year, we started working with a couple of 4th grade classes at a school in our community to begin introducing standing desks. Our hope is to set up an ideal movement enriched classroom in each, depending on the needs of the teacher. The movement-enriched classrooms will benefit the kids using them, and also help educate parents. The education for adults will help raise awareness and funds for communities and families who can’t afford standing desks for their kids.

A movement enriched classroom doesn’t necessarily mean only standing desks. There are other options like standing tables, seated cushions and wobble chairs. We also love the idea of floor space so the kids have a chance to sit cross-legged to open up their hip joints and engage their stability muscles by getting up and down from the floor. There are also stools they can use at the standing desks but we have heard that after a couple of weeks, most of the kids don’t want to use them.

We’re certainly not the first ones to introduce standing desks in the classroom. There is a school in Marin County, California, who was able to switch their entire school over to standing desks and had some very cool results with this. The kids actually really like it. We have some friends who recently moved to there from San Francisco, and are thrilled with the school. The mom has noticed that her son is just not wired to sit all day long, and his new school is a welcome change.

Here in our neighborhood, we only have one desk in each of the 4th grade rooms so far. The kids are already grateful, and have made us the sweetest cards and a couple of them have openly thanked us in the hall at school. And that is just for bringing one desk into their classroom. We even had about six boys come out and help us put the desks together outside the class. Children are so dynamic, and they know what their bodies need. It is a big goal to get standing desks in every classroom in our community, but we are looking forward to supporting one room at a time. We know this will be a long term project, but the gratitude we receive from the children keeps us motivated.

We have a few fundraising ideas as this work continues. We will keep everybody posted, so be sure to follow our Facebook page and check our blog for regular updates!

 

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