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The Effects of Classroom Seating Arrangements On On-Task Behavior and Academic Performance An Action Research Project By Danielle Steger EDUC 702.22 Fall.

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Presentation on theme: "The Effects of Classroom Seating Arrangements On On-Task Behavior and Academic Performance An Action Research Project By Danielle Steger EDUC 702.22 Fall."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Effects of Classroom Seating Arrangements On On-Task Behavior and Academic Performance An Action Research Project By Danielle Steger EDUC Fall 2009

2 Table of Contents Abstract Abstract Introduction Introduction -Statement of the Problem4 -Review of Related Literature5-12 -Statement of the Hypothesis13 Method Method -Participants14 -Instruments15 -Experimental Design -Procedure

3 Table of Contents Results Results Discussion Discussion Implications Implications References References Appendices Appendices -Appendix A 19 -Appendix B 20 -Appendix C 21

4 Statement of the Problem PS X has adopted cluster seating for all classrooms, 100% of the school day. Independent math practice at PS X is complicated by off-task behavior and would benefit from a less distracting seating arrangement, such as paired columns.

5 Review of Related Literature The Importance of Seating Arrangement The main cause of off-task behavior is classroom seating arrangement. The main cause of off-task behavior is classroom seating arrangement. (Bonus & Riordan, 1998). Room arrangement affects the learning process, student behavior, and student engagement. Room arrangement affects the learning process, student behavior, and student engagement. (Florman, 2003; Lackney & Jacobs, 2002; Proshansky & Wolfe, 1974; Richards, 2006; Strong- Wilson & Ellis, 2007; Susi, 1989; Weinstein, 1977). (Florman, 2003; Lackney & Jacobs, 2002; Proshansky & Wolfe, 1974; Richards, 2006; Strong- Wilson & Ellis, 2007; Susi, 1989; Weinstein, 1977).

6 Review of Related Literature PROS: Research Supporting Row Seating On-task behavior increases with rows. On-task behavior increases with rows. (Hastings & Schwieso, 1995).

7 Review of Related Literature PROS: Research Supporting Row Seating Students prefer orderliness and clear views of the teacher. Students prefer orderliness and clear views of the teacher. (Raviv, Raviv & Reisel, 1990). Some learners prefer to learn alone or with one partner. Some learners prefer to learn alone or with one partner. (Burke & Burke-Samide, 2004; Church, 2004; Dunn & Dunn, 1975). Learning style is 60% biological. Learning style is 60% biological. (Dunn, 1990).

8 Review of Related Literature PROS: Research Supporting Row Seating Row seating reduces talking. Row seating reduces talking. (Koneya, 1976; Ridling, 1994; Silverstein & Stang, 1976; Wannarka & Ruhl, 2008; Weinstein, 1979). In the 1900’s the business model entered the American education system based on the German model of efficiency. In the 1900’s the business model entered the American education system based on the German model of efficiency. (Callehan, 1962).

9 Review of Related Literature PROS: Problems With Cluster Seating Increased proximity increases likelihood of off-task conversations. Increased proximity increases likelihood of off-task conversations. (Koneya, 1976; Ridling, 1994; Weinstein, 1979).

10 Review of Related Literature PROS: Theorists and Supporters of Row Seating Students prefer row seating. Students prefer row seating. (McCorskey & MCVetta, 1978). Task orientation is improved. Task orientation is improved. (Raviv, Raviv & Reisel, 1990; Weinstein, 1979).

11 Review of Related Literature CONS: Arguments Supporting Cluster Seating It is ideal for socially facilitated learning. It is ideal for socially facilitated learning. (Patton, Snell, Knight & Florman 2001). It promotes “innovation.” It promotes “innovation.” (Raviv, Raviv & Reisel, 1990). Students like each other more and communicate better when facing Students like each other more and communicate better when facing each other. each other. (O’Hare, 1998; Bovard, 1951). (O’Hare, 1998; Bovard, 1951).

12 Review of Related Literature CONS: Arguments Against Row Seating Row seating impedes a teachers ability to walk between student desks and assess learning. Row seating impedes a teachers ability to walk between student desks and assess learning. (Weaver Dunne, 2001).

13 Statement of the Hypothesis HR1: Changing the seating arrangement from cluster seating to paired columns over a four week period will increase the on-task behavior of 24 common branch second grade students at PS X during math class, and lead to increased scores on math assessments.

14 Participants Two second grade common branch classes in the NYCBOE. Classroom A 24 students 24 students 1 student repeating second grade 1 student repeating second grade cluster seating (4 groups of 6) 100% of the school day cluster seating (4 groups of 6) 100% of the school day Classroom B 24 students 24 students 1 student repeating second grade 1 student repeating second grade cluster seating (4 groups of 6) 100% of the school day cluster seating (4 groups of 6) 100% of the school day

15 Instruments Tests Tests - Three Unit Tests Student surveys Student surveys - Survey 1: To be given to both classes prior to action research. - Survey 2: To be given to both classes following action research. - Survey 3: To be given only to class one following action research.

16 References Bonus, M., & Riordan, L. (1998, May 1). Increasing student on-task behavior through the use of specific seating arrangements. (Report No. PS026868). Chicago, IL: Saint Xavier University. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED422129). (Report No. PS026868). Chicago, IL: Saint Xavier University. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED422129). Bovard, E. Jr. (1951, Nov). The psychology of classroom interaction. The Journal of Educational Research, 45(3), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from the JSTOR database. Burke, K., & Burke-Samide, B. (2004, July-August). Required changes in the classroom environment: It’s a matter of design. Jamaica, New York: Clearing House. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ705442). Callahan, R. (1962). Education and the cult of efficiency. Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago press. Church, S. (2004). Learning Styles. Message posted to Dunn, R. (1990, October). Rita Dunn answers questions on learning styles. Jamaica, NY: Educational Leadership. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ416423). (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ416423). Dunn, K, & Dunn, R. (1975). Learning styles, teaching styles. NASSP Bulletin, 59, Retrieved October, , from SAGE database Retrieved October, , from SAGE database. Florman, J. (Fall, 2003). Psychological & quantitative foundations: Researching classroom seating arrangements. Retrieved October 4, 2009, from The University of Iowa, College of Education Web site: October 4, 2009, from The University of Iowa, College of Education Web site: Hastings, N., & Schwieso, J. (1995, December 1). Tasks and tables: The effects of seating arrangements on task engagement in primary classrooms. Nottingham, UK: Department of Primary Education. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ514371). in primary classrooms. Nottingham, UK: Department of Primary Education. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ514371). Koneya, M. (1976, January 1). Location and interaction in row-and-column seating arrangements. Environment and Behavior, 8(2), Retrieved September 17, 2009, from SAGE database. Lackney, J., & Jacobs, P. (2002, January 1). Teachers as placemakers: Investigating teachers' use of the physical learning environment in instructional design (Report No. EF006078). (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED463645). Learning styles: Unblock your true potential. (n.d.). Retrieved October 4, 2009, from

17 References McCroskey, J. C., & MCVetta, R. W. (1978). Classroom seating arrangements: Instructional communication theory versus student preferences [Electronic version]. Communication Education, 27(2), communication theory versus student preferences [Electronic version]. Communication Education, 27(2), O’Hare, M. (Autumn, 1998). Classroom design for discussion-based teaching. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 17 (4), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Management, 17 (4), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Patton, J., Snell, J., Knight, W., & Gerken, K. (2001, April 1). A survey study of elementary classroom seating designs (Report No. SP040068). Washington, DC: National Association of School Psychologists. designs (Report No. SP040068). Washington, DC: National Association of School Psychologists. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED454194). (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED454194). Proshansky, E., & Wolfe, M. (August, 1974). The physical setting and open education. The School Review, 82(4), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Raviv, A., Raviv, A., & Reisel, E. (1990, Spring). Teachers and students: Two different perspectives?! Measuring social climate in the classroom. American Educational Research Journal, 27(1), Measuring social climate in the classroom. American Educational Research Journal, 27(1), Retrieved September 17, 2009, from the JSTOR database. Retrieved September 17, 2009, from the JSTOR database. Richards, J. (2006, Winter). Setting the Stage for Student Engagement. Kappa Delta Pi Record. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ724640). Ridling, Z. (1994, April 1). The effects of three seating arrangements on teachers' use of selective interactive verbal behaviors (Report No. SP035202). New Orleans, LA: American Educational Research Association. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED369757). behaviors (Report No. SP035202). New Orleans, LA: American Educational Research Association. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED369757). Silverstein, H., & Stang, D. J. (June, 1976). Seating position and interaction in triads: A field study. Sociometry, 39(2), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Sociometry, 39(2), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Strong-Wilson, T., & Ellis, J. (2007, April). Children and place: Reggio Emilia’s environment as third teacher. Montreal, Quebec: Theory Into Practice. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ755994). Quebec: Theory Into Practice. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ755994).

18 References Strong-Wilson, T., & Ellis, J. (2007, April). Children and place: Reggio Emilia’s environment as third teacher. Montreal, Quebec: Theory Into Practice. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ755994). Quebec: Theory Into Practice. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ755994). Susi, F. D. (July, 1989). The physical environment of art classrooms: A basis for effective discipline. Art Education, 42(4), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Education, 42(4), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from JSTOR database. Wannarka, R., & Ruhl, K. (2008, May 1). Seating arrangements that promote positive academic and behavioural outcomes: A review of empirical research. Oxford, UK: Support for Learning. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ793728). review of empirical research. Oxford, UK: Support for Learning. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ793728). Weaver Dunne, D. (2001, April 4). Do seating arrangements and assignments classroom management? Education World. Retrieved October 4, 2009, from World. Retrieved October 4, 2009, from Weinstein, C. (1977, Summer). Modifying student behavior in an open classroom through changes in the physical design. American Educational Research Journal, 14(3), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from the SAGE database. design. American Educational Research Journal, 14(3), Retrieved October 4, 2009, from the SAGE database. Weinstein, C. (1979, Fall). The physical environment of the school: A review of the research. Review of Educational Research, 49(4), Retrieved September 23, 2009, from the SAGE database. Research, 49(4), Retrieved September 23, 2009, from the SAGE database.

19 Appendix A: Student Survey on Seating and Math (To be given to Class 1 and Class 2 prior to action research). Directions: Please write the number on the line that matches how you feel about the statement Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Agree Disagree Agree Disagree I like math.___________ I like sitting near other people.___________ I am good at math.___________ I can get my work done during math class.___________ I think that math is hard.___________ I like sitting near other people while I work.___________ I get distracted by the people near me during math class.___________ The people near me distract me from my work. ___________ I can work independently during math class.___________ I can’t get my work done during math class. ___________

20 Appendix B: Student Survey on Seating and Math (To be given to Class 1 and Class 2 after action research). Directions: Please write the number on the line that matches how you feel about the statement Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Agree Disagree Agree Disagree I like math.___________ I like sitting near other people.___________ I am good at math.___________ I can get my work done during math class.___________ I think that math is hard.___________ I like sitting near other people while I work.___________ I get distracted by the people near me during math class.___________ The people near me distract me from my work. ___________ I can work independently during math class.___________ I can’t get my work done during math class. ___________

21 Appendix C: Student Survey on Seating and Math (To be given to Class 1 after action research). Directions: Please write the number on the line that matches how you feel about the statement Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Strongly Agree Disagree Strongly Agree Disagree Agree Disagree I like math.___________ I like sitting in rows.___________ I am good at math.___________ I can get my work done during math class when I sit in rows.___________ I think that math is hard.___________ I like sitting in rows better than groups.___________ I get distracted by the people near me during math class.___________ The people near me distract me from my work. ___________ I can work independently during math class when I sit in rows.___________ I like sitting in groups better than rows. ___________


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