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(Orlando Sentinel)   Problem: elementary teacher notices her students are squirming in their seats. Solution: give them yoga balls instead of chairs. Realistic solution: stop being a dull teacher   (orlandosentinel.com) divider line 55
    More: Florida, yoga ball, teachers, desk chair, Aroostook County, posters  
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4594 clicks; posted to Main » on 04 Nov 2013 at 2:15 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



55 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-11-03 11:59:20 PM  
Wait. A story about a teacher's balls that doesn't involve a felony?

WTF is this shiat?
 
2013-11-04 12:11:11 AM  
Duh. I could have figured this out, but I'm in a comfy chair, only half paying attention.
 
2013-11-04 12:28:06 AM  
All teachers are dull teachers to an elementary school kid.
 
2013-11-04 12:51:55 AM  
No teacher can make the Sunshine State Standards interesting.
 
2013-11-04 02:18:10 AM  
I'm pretty sure I read on Fark that this problem has been solved with duct tape.
 
2013-11-04 02:21:00 AM  
On a recent morning, Burnett walked about her classroom giving a reading lesson about story plots and main ideas as students bobbed atop their cushy yellow seats. Once in a while a student would roll on his or her stomach or slouch, but the new seats were mostly just like having regular chairs.

Durrrrr.
 
2013-11-04 02:27:02 AM  
I'm not sure why this is in the news....it's old news....ohhhh wait....fark.com

gotcha.

/My daughters sit on an exercise ball when working at the computer, by choice
//they are 14 and 16 years old
 
2013-11-04 02:29:24 AM  
Yes, this makes perfect sense.  It requires a minimal amount of effort to stabilize yourself on an exercise ball, and this effort is enough to take away a child's hyperactivity and allows them to focus.  So instead of drugging kids in an effort to reduce their energy levels enough to pay attention, give them a passive activity that lets them burn it off instead.
 
2013-11-04 02:30:38 AM  
Make student sit on a ball, you teach him how to sit on a ball.  Teach student how to make more balls in one hour, many many more Facebook likes.
 
2013-11-04 02:31:10 AM  
This is actually brilliant. It also keeps them from getting out of their seat without permission...it would be too obvious because the ball would be all over the place.
 
2013-11-04 02:36:44 AM  

Kevin72: This is actually brilliant. It also keeps them from getting out of their seat without permission...it would be too obvious because the ball would be all over the place.


It isn't already obvious enough to have an empty chair and some kid in some random place?
 
2013-11-04 02:46:37 AM  
Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.
 
2013-11-04 02:51:44 AM  

Prof. Frink: Kevin72: This is actually brilliant. It also keeps them from getting out of their seat without permission...it would be too obvious because the ball would be all over the place.

It isn't already obvious enough to have an empty chair and some kid in some random place?


With a chair, a kid is up and running. With the ball, it's hard to get out of and then stabilize so it doesn't bounce and run away. Plus a lot of kids getting out of their seats is really random squirminess which this yoga seat seems to alleviate, mitigate, and disintegrate.
 
2013-11-04 03:02:03 AM  
I was in first grade in 1966/67. Our teacher Miss Wilson, She took us outside a lot. She seemed to understand that keeping kids cooped up didn't work. When we were learning to tell time, she took us out to the playground and drew a clock face in the sand and used the shadow of a yard stick to form the hour hand. That related time to the sun and made it click for everyone. It also tied into learning direction as north was the 12.

3 was east, 6 was south and 9 was west...
 
2013-11-04 03:13:40 AM  
So now they're bouncing instead of squirming.
 
2013-11-04 03:29:51 AM  
As an idea, I am surprisingly ok with this. Unfortunately, I've been exposed to elementary school classrooms, where ideas have a tendency to go all pear-shaped. I have seen students in my mother's classroom (third grade) that would sooner throw the balls around than sit on them.

...actually, I know graduate students who would do the same. (I'm one of them.)
 
2013-11-04 03:32:48 AM  

InternetSecurityGuard: I was in first grade in 1966/67. Our teacher Miss Wilson, She took us outside a lot. She seemed to understand that keeping kids cooped up didn't work. When we were learning to tell time, she took us out to the playground and drew a clock face in the sand and used the shadow of a yard stick to form the hour hand. That related time to the sun and made it click for everyone. It also tied into learning direction as north was the 12.

3 was east, 6 was south and 9 was west...


Sounds like a good teacher.  Just because a teacher has all kinds of knowledge crammed in their heads, don't make them good at what they do.
 
2013-11-04 03:33:25 AM  
So, the idea of not having elementary aged kids sitting behind a desk for 8 hours is still not a possibility? The balls (heh) cure the symptoms, not the cause.
 
2013-11-04 03:43:48 AM  
There has been some pretty interesting anecdotal evidence for having kids with hyperactivity do something passive and inane in class while listening to a lecture, resulting in them performing quite well.  I remember reading about a teacher who had children who couldn't focus stand in the back of the class and bounce a ball off the wall.
 
2013-11-04 04:34:54 AM  

gmpilot: There has been some pretty interesting anecdotal evidence for having kids with hyperactivity do something passive and inane in class while listening to a lecture, resulting in them performing quite well.  I remember reading about a teacher who had children who couldn't focus stand in the back of the class and bounce a ball off the wall.


I always wanted a video game like a driving or flight sim at my desk to do while listening to lectures.

If you actually GAVE it to kids, with realistic controls, you could raise a class of really good drivers.
 
2013-11-04 04:36:03 AM  
"Hello Mr. Ball of my neighboring classmate, I'd like to introduce you to Mr. Compass!"
"HisssssssssSSSSss!"
"Now, that's just rude!"
 
2013-11-04 05:07:15 AM  
www.momlogic.com
 
2013-11-04 05:36:09 AM  
Kid rolls off the chair.  Parents sue school.  Teacher gets fired.

Why not just go the legally safe route and pump them full of school corporation-sanctioned Ritalin?
 
2013-11-04 05:56:27 AM  
...Or they might just have worms.
 
2013-11-04 06:04:53 AM  
i.chzbgr.com
 
2013-11-04 06:05:06 AM  

anwserman: Yes, this makes perfect sense.  It requires a minimal amount of effort to stabilize yourself on an exercise ball, and this effort is enough to take away a child's hyperactivity and allows them to focus.  So instead of drugging kids in an effort to reduce their energy levels enough to pay attention, give them a passive activity that lets them burn it off instead.


Solutions like this must be shown not to work, so we can cut teachers' pay. Because everything is the fault of public school teachers, and all these problems could be solved if we went to private schools. Because freedom.
 
2013-11-04 06:20:40 AM  
Problem: children aren't designed to sit still hour after hour. Children are designed to learn, which they do by playing, not by sitting chained to a desk.
 
2013-11-04 06:26:57 AM  

Uncle Tractor: Problem: children aren't designed to sit still hour after hour. Children are designed to learn, which they do by playing, not by sitting chained to a desk.


wanna bet?

ts3.mm.bing.net
 
2013-11-04 06:53:36 AM  
My son's private school did this.  It's actually very smart.  They learn good posture and they can do a little bit of a bouncy if they get restless.  One or two of the boys kept not following the rules, so the balls were taken away for a few weeks.  The teacher did a great job of making sure the kids didn't go crazy on them.
 
2013-11-04 06:58:36 AM  

gmpilot: There has been some pretty interesting anecdotal evidence for having kids with hyperactivity do something passive and inane in class while listening to a lecture, resulting in them performing quite well.  I remember reading about a teacher who had children who couldn't focus stand in the back of the class and bounce a ball off the wall.


It's called 'hyperactivity' because it's annoying to adults and not conducive to reading and writing and so forth, but for most of human existence most people didn't read or write and kids weren't sitting around holding perfectly still for hours every day. They were doing manual labor, and I'd imagine having a little extra fire in you that made you want to move around and lift and haul stuff or walk all day or whatever was beneficial. Just look at how baby animals play with other. When you think about it, what's odd is expecting 100% of children can sit still for that long, year after year, without any problems.
 
2013-11-04 07:44:52 AM  
There's always the good old fashioned gym teacher's solution to kids with too much energy.

A couple if times a day, take them outside to run laps.
 
2013-11-04 08:18:18 AM  

anwserman: Yes, this makes perfect sense.  It requires a minimal amount of effort to stabilize yourself on an exercise ball, and this effort is enough to take away a child's hyperactivity and allows them to focus.  So instead of drugging kids in an effort to reduce their energy levels enough to pay attention, give them a passive activity that lets them burn it off instead.


We're about to get one for our son. Just diagnosed with Autism/adhd. He's doing well in school, but having a hard time sitting still. I'm hoping it will help as I would rather not drug him up right now.
 
2013-11-04 08:37:02 AM  
Fox and Friends is pretending to be outraged by this, so it can't be a bad idea.

But I'm not sure it's a great idea, either. Stability balls work as chair replacements for adults because we're trying to hold ourselves steady and still, using core muscles that aren't used when we're sitting in a chair. Kids... are going to be bouncy and all over the place even more so than usual. Plus the balls aren't going to last very long. When I was using one as a chair I was replacing it every 3-4 months. That's gonna get expensive for a classroom.
 
2013-11-04 08:44:15 AM  

Uncle Tractor: Problem: children aren't designed to sit still hour after hour. Children are designed to learn, which they do by playing, not by sitting chained to a desk.


Assume failure, and they'll live up to your expectations.
 
2013-11-04 08:56:18 AM  

harlock: Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.


Came in to say something very much like this, except you said it better.

Oh, and fark you, subby.
 
2013-11-04 09:24:11 AM  

FuturePastNow: Fox and Friends is pretending to be outraged by this, so it can't be a bad idea.

But I'm not sure it's a great idea, either. Stability balls work as chair replacements for adults because we're trying to hold ourselves steady and still, using core muscles that aren't used when we're sitting in a chair. Kids... are going to be bouncy and all over the place even more so than usual. Plus the balls aren't going to last very long. When I was using one as a chair I was replacing it every 3-4 months. That's gonna get expensive for a classroom.


Did they pop, look deformed, or just get grungy looking?
A popping one is probably amusing every 3-4 months.  If someone at my office had this problem there would be an office pool on when the next blowout would be.
 
2013-11-04 09:49:16 AM  

harlock: Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.


I've taught 1st grade. I tried to make it fun, and I played games with them as much as possible, but no matter what you do, some kids are not going to like the same things as most of the rest of the class, and sometimes the kids just have to sit still, suck it up, and get through the material.

The swiss balls sound like a freakin' genius idea.
 
2013-11-04 09:53:43 AM  
Enough about "teh kidz." This is a human condition thing. The squirmy kids become squirmy adults who have sublimated their worst behaviors into pen tapping, doodling, gum chewing, excessive stretching, etc during work meetings, conversations with friends, and the like.

There's nothing wrong with most of them. They're often kinetic learners who need to pair learning with action. Also, many are folks who are simply more attentive when they gave some innocuous physical activity to do while listening. Know anyone at work with "desk toys?" At really strict places this may be a more acceptable "stress ball" type toy. Either way, good chances that this "distracted" person is actually more focused because of the toys/doodling/whathaveya.

Amazing what a few seminars in learner dynamics can teach you. Almost as if teachers, who get degrees in teaching and learning, know more than the average snarky Farker.
 
2013-11-04 09:56:38 AM  
Just bring back recess.
Let them go outside and run around like idiots, maybe even play some games, and they will be able to pay attention and do some schoolwork.


It ain't rocket surgery, people!
 
2013-11-04 10:39:51 AM  
Spending your life sitting in a chair is ridiculously bad for you. Someone who exercises regularly but has a chair bound career has a lower life expectancy than someone who works on their feet and does not exercise.
 
2013-11-04 10:40:55 AM  
Realistic solution: stop being a dull teacher

More realistic solution - more frequent bathroom breaks.  ;-)
 
2013-11-04 10:44:53 AM  

Arthen: Spending your life sitting in a chair is ridiculously bad for you. Someone who exercises regularly but has a chair bound career has a lower life expectancy than someone who works on their feet and does not exercise.


Citation?
 
2013-11-04 10:46:14 AM  
I first thought of ben-wa balls and wondered, well that's not going to make them stop squirming. Then I realized it was yoga balls.


Please, do not squirm on my balls.
www.biographyonline.net


Go ahead, do what you gotta do, until you don't gotta do it no more.
www.green-leads.com
 
2013-11-04 10:48:20 AM  
"Stop being a dull teacher" is not a realistic option. All subjects have their dull points, and yet, these dull points are usually exactly where one finds the most important things that can be gleaned from that subject.

We are not born to suffer dullness. It is a learned skill. But it is absolutely shocking just how vital it is, because some degree of that skill is needed to learn most other things.
 
2013-11-04 10:59:43 AM  
www.lifehackingmovie.com

Yoga Balls.
 
2013-11-04 11:31:08 AM  

FuturePastNow: Fox and Friends is pretending to be outraged by this, so it can't be a bad idea.

But I'm not sure it's a great idea, either. Stability balls work as chair replacements for adults because we're trying to hold ourselves steady and still, using core muscles that aren't used when we're sitting in a chair. Kids... are going to be bouncy and all over the place even more so than usual. Plus the balls aren't going to last very long. When I was using one as a chair I was replacing it every 3-4 months. That's gonna get expensive for a classroom.


I've been using the same one for the past 8 YEARS and it still looks and works like new. What in the fark are you doing to need to replace yours 3-4 times a year?
 
2013-11-04 11:42:35 AM  

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: harlock: Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.

I've taught 1st grade. I tried to make it fun, and I played games with them as much as possible, but no matter what you do, some kids are not going to like the same things as most of the rest of the class, and sometimes the kids just have to sit still, suck it up, and get through the material.

The swiss balls sound like a freakin' genius idea.


You say that as if that is the only way to do things. What I like about the Montessori method is that the kids work at their own pace, spending as much or as little time as they need on a lesson and don't have to wait for the other students to catch up, or get left behind when it takes them longer to grasp something. And it gets around the  squirming in their seats problem by having them sit on the floor, getting up whenever they need to get another lesson.
 
2013-11-04 12:07:16 PM  

stevetherobot: Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: harlock: Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.

I've taught 1st grade. I tried to make it fun, and I played games with them as much as possible, but no matter what you do, some kids are not going to like the same things as most of the rest of the class, and sometimes the kids just have to sit still, suck it up, and get through the material.

The swiss balls sound like a freakin' genius idea.

You say that as if that is the only way to do things. What I like about the Montessori method is that the kids work at their own pace, spending as much or as little time as they need on a lesson and don't have to wait for the other students to catch up, or get left behind when it takes them longer to grasp something. And it gets around the  squirming in their seats problem by having them sit on the floor, getting up whenever they need to get another lesson.


Just a caveat for readers out there: each Montessori school uses a different philosophy.  My wife and I got snookered into sending our son to a Montessori school, but the teachers did the exact opposite: you could not move on UNTIL everyone else in the class had mastered it.  So, my son, who would learn topics a bit faster, would keep doing the same damned things each day, or, if he were a bit slower on a topic, would feel the pressure from others to get it done so they could "move on."  He hated every second of it.
 
2013-11-04 12:42:06 PM  
Great idea until some of the little farkers start jacking around on their big yellow balls, knock their teeth out on the corner of a desk and mommy and daddy sue the school for medical costs plus "pain and suffering."
 
2013-11-04 12:52:29 PM  

whizbangthedirtfarmer: stevetherobot: Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: harlock: Try teaching 1st grade subby, try it.   Especially with 30 kids in one classroom.   Little kids are naturally wiggly.  We all forget just how much when we get older.

I've taught 1st grade. I tried to make it fun, and I played games with them as much as possible, but no matter what you do, some kids are not going to like the same things as most of the rest of the class, and sometimes the kids just have to sit still, suck it up, and get through the material.

The swiss balls sound like a freakin' genius idea.

You say that as if that is the only way to do things. What I like about the Montessori method is that the kids work at their own pace, spending as much or as little time as they need on a lesson and don't have to wait for the other students to catch up, or get left behind when it takes them longer to grasp something. And it gets around the  squirming in their seats problem by having them sit on the floor, getting up whenever they need to get another lesson.

Just a caveat for readers out there: each Montessori school uses a different philosophy.  My wife and I got snookered into sending our son to a Montessori school, but the teachers did the exact opposite: you could not move on UNTIL everyone else in the class had mastered it.  So, my son, who would learn topics a bit faster, would keep doing the same damned things each day, or, if he were a bit slower on a topic, would feel the pressure from others to get it done so they could "move on."  He hated every second of it.


Unfortunately the term Montessori is not trademarked or protected in any way, so anybody can slap the name on their school whether or not the follow her philosophy and methods. If you are checking out a Montessori, check whether they are affiliated with or certified by a reputable Montessori organization.
 
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