In February 2017 we wrote about standing desks in schools. Since, we’ve noticed growing awareness about sedentary behavior in children, and the benefits that arise when learning and movement intersect. Here’s some of the coverage and research:
Why Kids Shouldn’t Sit Still in Class via The New York Times
Sitting All Day Doesn’t (and Shouldn’t) Work for Young Scholars via Parent.co
Teens Are Just As Sedentary As 60 Year Olds via Time
Let’s check out some of the defining information from these articles in support of more movement in schools:
1. Lately, Students are as Inactive as Adults
What happened to concerns about exercise in schools that led to the creation of outlets like recess and gym class? Our digital world is evolving to encourage inactive screen time, and institutions need to respond. The Parent.co article sums up the issue well: “The average American student sits at school for about four and a half hours a day. Add that to the hours they sit staring at screens – computers, iPads, phones, or television – and we find that our kids are sitting 85 percent of the time they are awake,” writes Sandi Schwartz.
2. Students Who Move More are Smarter
The above New York Times article references a 2013 studies from the Institute of Medicine and Lund University in Sweden, among other sources, to support this claim. “Activity helps the brain in so many ways. Activity stimulates more blood vessels in the brain to support more brain cells. And there is evidence that active kids do better on standardized tests and pay attention more in school,” explains James F. Sallis, a professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California, San Diego.
3. Teachers Are Reaching for Alternative Methods
Short, movement-filled “brain break” videos and exercises included throughout the day are growing more popular in classrooms. So are standing desks, exercise ball chairs, and other tools that naturally encourage movement. With its gratifying fidget bar, the AlphaBetter® Desk continues to reign as a popular standing desk for kids.