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January 2, 2013

Seating Arrangements

I like to change desks on the last day of the month - or more like the last Friday of the month.  It's a chance for the kiddos to clean out their desks - really organize everything and get ready for a brand new start.  Every month I usually change to a different seating arrangement as well.  Of course this afternoon I'm changing because, well... before vacation I ran out of energy to come up with a new seating chart.    

At the end of last year I found my most favorite arrangement - the Double U.  Getting prepped for this new school year I had everything set up for this group of kids, my husband did the zip ties on the desks, and we were ready to tackle the year.  Then I met the kids and realized that this group needs to switch desks a lot.  I mean a lot!  I needed to have quite a few of them as my desk buddies, or as islands, or as a chance to move away from the group to be able to focus.  This group can not handle sitting in table groups, and many of them need to be facing forward - not having their desks sitting sideways from the board where they could possibly see another child.  Of course there isn't a lot of room in my classroom to have everyone as an island all the time.  Having no room to walk around or losing carpet space drives me nuts.

So I wanted to share all the different ways I arrange my room.  I made up a packet so you can see how I transition through the year.  I know everyone's class is different, but if you would like to download this from TPT you should be able to just write in the names.  These arrangements are based on 32 kiddos.  
Table Groups Ideas
*groups of 3 (these look like ladybugs to me)
*groups of 4
*groups of 6
*groups of 8
*groups of 10 and 12 (not enough space in my classroom for this one)

*Link Ups - sides connected, everyone facing forward.  This one is great for when students really need to focus and get distracted by others.

*Islands - everyone separated into rows

*E reverse E - students facing forward except side students 
(10 students that are capable of looking at other students)

*Double U - 20 students on the outside U, 12/13 students on the inner U.  This is great for when you only want 2 rows of students.  It feels like a huddle, no one is too far away.  

  If nothing else perhaps it will give you some ideas on how to move around your kids.  


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you! It was so easy this time around just printing out the sheet and filling in the kid names.

  2. I have this problem this year. I have 25 kiddos and several need to be away from the group or can't sit by certain other kids. My room is a long narrow rectangle, so I have trouble with moving them because of this:( Still I try to move mine once a month too so they don't get board or too friendly with their group members.

    The Busy Busy Hive

    1. I've had so many desk buddies - or cart buddies - or touching the back wall, or front wall... I've been up to 4 islands at one time this year. For islands I give them a week or two to see if behavior improves, then they get a chance to try again with the main group.

  3. This is so my class this year. My room is squarish, and I have 24 kids. I always used to to six groups of four, but my kids this year just can't handle it. They are currently in four rows facing forward with three or four on the sides. I may have to try some of your ideas now that the zip ties are breaking :)

    Fifth in the Middle

    1. Thanks for stopping by. I ended up cutting my zip ties little by little as the kids had to become islands. It was a sad couple of days.

  4. OMG this is MY class! For real. They cannot sit near each other and are struggling to work together. Major problem- I have tables! I am constantly changing the arrangement though! I'm a bit "table changing CRAY!" :)

    Primary Teacherhood

    1. How many kids sit at a table? I hope you find something that works for you. :)


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