Theory + Concept + Application
FLOW, PENTE & IDEA are without any doubt the most well thought out desk solutions that implement 21st Century Learning / Common Core Learning to date. Supportive research has been pivotal in the development of these products.
The research that we conducted looking into studies about the most productive collaborative group size, guided us through the development phase of these products. These studies gave us the blue print for the foundation that explains why we believe the most productive grouping number is FIVE . They also firmly support the concept of groupings of FIVE. The R&D process allowed us the opportunity to study important criteria such as human interaction, the physical layout of today’s new build classroom and the people involved in the teaching and learning process.
We realized that without looking at the big picture, furniture could become an obstacle instead of acting as the teacher’s assistant. We kept in mind that the Buyers, Architects, Designers, Teachers, and Students are all important players in designing a new learning space. All of their concerns need to be addressed. There are also several people that struggle with the thought of change that need to know that they have been included in this newer concept as well.
Some of these concerns or physical limitations are:
Two Types of Teachers: TRADITIONAL Teacher & PROGRESSIVE Teacher. Both need to feel that they can start the
school year in their own comfortable set up. Either collaborative groups or traditional rows.
Flow, Pente & Idea Desks Accommodate ALL Classroom Configurations: If a flexible 21st century furniture
solution is not purchased to outfit the entire building then the opportunity is lost for a TRADITIONAL Teacher to implement the collaborative set up at a later date when they become more comfortable with the concept.
Classroom Size Consideration: If the desks are to big you cannot accommodate a Traditional single row set up and
still achieve a classroom size of 25-30 students. Today’s classrooms are typically being built to the size of 750sqft - 950sqft (NOTE: older schools were built with much bigger classroom that ranged from 1100sqft - 1400sqft).
Testing and Independent Work: As much as the correct collaborative groups are highly effective, there are times when
groups would need to pull them apart for testing or independent work. Therefore, it is necessity to have a highly flexible 21st century desk solution in place that allows option. Flow, Pente & Idea meet this criteria.
Mobility: In a typical class session, not every moment is used in a collaborative set up. There are times when groups would need to be pulled apart. If desks configurations are not easy to move they will never change and frustration will set in.
Why FIVE?: Studies show that this is the most effective grouping number for collaborative learning. It is vitally important to begin with the correct grouping size when implementing 21st century / Common Core learning principles. When applying the correct type of students (over achievers / middle achievers / under achievers) to the group of FIVE, a sense of comfort can be realized among those students to be able to engage in a discussion that can move the learning process along.
The Right Furniture the First Time: The opportunity of a renovation or new construction of an existing building only
presents itself every 15 to 25 years. If you don’t install the correct furniture from the beginning you will lose the opportunity to implement 21st century or common core learning concepts.
In summary we are trying to create an easy environment for implementing the concept of 21st Century / Common Core Learning principles.
Furniture plays a very big part in whether an educator will view the implementation as an easy move or not.