Discover why seating charts matter and how to fine-tune them

In my years as a teacher, I think I underestimated the power of classroom seating charts. Research has shown that the physical arrangement of a classroom affects how students behave and how they relate to their learning material. When students are seated in arrangements that are conducive to learning, they have a more positive attitude toward school, and they participate in ways that enhance collaboration and classroom culture.

Read on to find best practices and Adobe Express templates that can help you create effective seating charts. Keep in mind that you can change your seating arrangements frequently to facilitate different types of learning experiences, such as small-group activities, lectures, or presentations.

How to design classroom seating charts or desk arrangements that foster learning

Be sure to choose your classroom desk arrangement ideas based on the following criteria:

1. What you’re teaching that day

Can your lesson be enhanced by a Socratic discussion? If so, arrange your desks in a u-shape. If your students will be doing group work, arrange their desks in small clusters. If you need to present material via the whiteboard, arrange desks in rows with everyone facing the front of the room.

2. How students behave

If you have chatty students or if energy levels in the classroom are particularly high, you might want to arrange desks in rows to better facilitate learning and classroom management. However, if your students are able to focus in free or flexible seating arrangements, you can let them choose where they’d like to sit.

3. Student learning and social distancing needs

Some students learn better with their desks in rows or a u-shape, while others learn better at round tables that support group discussions. Of course, if you have students with vision or hearing issues, make sure they sit near the front of the room so they can see and hear clearly. If social distancing remains important, consider classroom desk arrangement for social distancing in your classroom searting chart.

When you’re ready to create your seating charts, there’s no need to design them from scratch. Adobe Express has a wide variety of templates that you can easily adapt for use in your classroom. Add students‘ names, photos, and other details, and create multiple types of charts to reflect different arrangements for different learning experiences.

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Explore free seating chart templates.