For the past four years or so I haven't had chairs around the tables. I got the idea from Bev Bos at the California Kindergarten Association Conference. Taking chairs away had several plusses:
• no tripping over chairs for me as I move around the classroom,
• no putting chairs up at the end of the day,
• no frustration for ADHD kids who simply can't sit,
• no students tipping back on their chairs and falling over, and
• no more students getting reminders to sit "back to back, seat to seat."
Bev likes to point out that active creative people tend to stand up to do their work: dentists, barbers, chefs, mechanics, artists, rock musicians, and so on. If we want children to be creative, her thinking goes, we should stand up, not sit down.
This year's kindergarten class seems especially well suited to handling chairs. We had a class meeting where I raised the idea of voting for the return of the chairs and the majority rules.
The first day was a success. Here's a picture taken at snack.