Kids are not always the best listeners when they’re sitting down for long periods. They might be paying attention for a while, but then their minds start to wander and become fidgety. So today, I am sharing two brilliant ways to get kids to sit still and focus on learning. You can use these both in the classroom or at home.
2 Brilliant Ways to Get Kids to Sit Still and Focus on Learning
Flexible seating and fidget toys are two ways to help your child or student focus better.
Flexible Seating to Get Kids to Sit Still and Stay Focused on Learning
The beauty of flexible seating is that it gives kids choices and choices mean control. There are so many things that kids don’t have control over, and allowing them to choose their seating might be the solution to their focus problem. This means kids can move around and sit in different positions, so long as it’s not disruptive.
What is Flexible Seating?
Flexible seating is an alternative to traditional seating within the classroom or at home. So instead of sitting at desks or regular classroom chairs choose seating that allows the child to move or feel more relaxed.
Ideas for Flexible Seating
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- Bean bags-Bean bags are squishy and soft, making it more comfortable for the students to sit.
- Wobble Stools– As a special education teacher, I have a couple of these wobble stools myself. The kids within the classroom love the wobble stools and ask for them often. They can wobble and release some of their energy while still being able to focus on the lesson.
- Seat cushions– The seat cushions are an easy way to individualize the students’ seating. For example, they may just need a more supportive and comfortable seat, or they may need a wobble cushion to help them move a little at their desk.
- Computer Chair– At home, students may desire to sit at something as simple as a comfortable computer chair.
- Balance ball or Balance Ball Chair– These allow kids to move around but keep a more alert posture because it’s harder for them to slouch in their seats. Kids will be less distracted when seated with one of these chairs due to how unstable they feel, thanks to the moving nature of this type of seating option. Check out the study The Journal of Autism and Development published: The Effects of Stability Ball Seating on the Behavior of Children with Autism During Instructional Activities.
Using Fidget Toys to Get Kids to Sit Still and Stay Focused on Learning
Fidget toys are inexpensive items that can help a student fidget with something without causing a great deal of noise. Most of the time, these toys will help kids to sit still and stay focused on learning. However, they can be more distracting to some students. So just keep an eye out for that.
Most Popular Fidget Toys
- The fidget square– This is a square toy with different ways to spin, click, or tap. I feel the square is the best overall fidget toy because it has multiple ways to fidget.
- The Fidget Spinner-The Fidget Spinner is also popular because you can easily spin something within your hands. They are quiet and often relatively inexpensive as well.
- Push Pops– Push Pops are the “new thing” within the classroom. They come in all different sizes, shapes, and colors. This fidget toy allows you to push down little circles without hardly any noise.
- Color Putty– Putty is an older fidget that you can easily get at the Dollar Tree. Putty allows them to stretch and pull the putty to keep their hands busy.
Any learning environment can be hectic and chaotic for kids, and it is hard to block out all the distractions. It makes it easy to lose focus on learning with things such as:
- Other classmates
- Noise from other rooms in the school (or house)
- What is going on outside the windows
More Ideas for Helping Kids to Sit Still and Focus on Learning
It’s no surprise that many kids find it challenging to sit still and stay focused on learning! But, for years, flexible seating and fidget toys have shown to have a positive impact within the classroom.
What activities have worked for your classroom or home? Let us know in the comments below.
Here are more ideas for helping children learn:
- Motivating Readers: How to Get Students to Love Reading
- How to Motivate Kids to Love Schoolwork
- Brain Break Ideas That Your Kids Will Love
- 8 Amazingly Easy Science Experiments Kids will Love
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