Tables or desks for KDG?

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by little317, Mar 2, 2008.

  1. little317

    little317 Groupie

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    Mar 2, 2008

    I have had tables in my classroom for the past two years. They are great for groupwork. I'm discovering some major issues with them though. I feel like I can't be as flexible with how I arrange the tables. Also, I have individual boxes for the kids' supplies and I'd like to have individual book boxes/bags for next year when we get more leveled readers. I figure that if you had desks for the kids, they could keep all of their supplies inside the desks.

    Do any of you have desks in your room? If you do, what are the pros and cons of using the desks versus tables.

    Also, if you have tables, are you facing any major challenges with seating arrangement and supply organiztion?

    I'm thinking about this early so that over the summer I can give ample time to notify the office if I need to exchange the tables for desks.
     
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  3. MissMaurie

    MissMaurie Companion

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    I feel the same way you do about the tables. I have them in my Kinder room now and wish that I had desks. I completely agree about the supplies and book issues. I have individual pencil boxes and wish to goodness that they had a desk to put them in when we are not using them. They store them in their individual mailboxes when we are not in class, but it is way too time consuming to put them up and take them out again every time we need them. I also find issues storing math journals and writer's workshop folders. I don't see us getting desks any time soon so I am trying to find new ways to deal with my tables. One thing that I am going to do is try using the chair pockets next year. Even if I can store a few things in them, that will free up a lot of shelf space in the room.
     
  4. little317

    little317 Groupie

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    I am thinking that if I can't get desks, I'll get the chair pockets to keep the supply boxes and leveled readers.
     
  5. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    I personally couldn't imagine kinders with desk but I'm sure there are plenty out there. I would imagine they would fiddle inside them a lot, wouldn't know how to maintain them, scoot them around and tilt them unnecessarily. I would go with the chair pockets instead but I admit I don't have actual desk experience.

    I would think if you store books and folders in desk that they might not be as well kept. Store them in bins and let kids get them for each table. It's better than everyone getting it. During some parts of the day we set them out ahead as they come in from recess, lunch or specials to ease the transition time.

    I don't have as many students and we have commuity supplies. I bought a 3 compartment caddy for each table and covered/heavily taped empty soup cans they decorated to hold their supplies. I did the same with fruit snack boxes to hold pencils. I decorated those using unit vocabulary. They turned out cute. Sometimes we don't need them and keep them on the shelf so we can spread newspaper for a paint project, etc. Sometimes we decide 1-2 cans is enough. Most of the time, to ease transition, we just bring the whole thing to the tables.
     
  6. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Mar 3, 2008

    I have done K with desks and prefer them to tables. I like the storage and the ability for each student to keep their supplies at hand but separate from their classmates. The flower tables we have now are cute but they do not offer enough space for 4 students and their materials. I would love to have desks again.
    I think the chairs we have now would tip over if we used chair pockets with very much in them.
     
  7. starbucks

    starbucks Comrade

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    Mar 3, 2008

    I have only used tables in my 13 year career, but my principal offered to give me desks that are currently in storage and I may just take him up on his offer next year. Every year kindergarten has more and more stuff and I sometimes feel that I spend half my day passing out and collecting things. Also if I had desks, I would be able to separate students that are not behaving. One of the other Kindergarten teachers that I work with has desks and she refused to give them up when they bought us tables many years ago. She loves them! I am still thinking of keeping 1 or 2 tables for the kids that can't handle desks, but I think I will give them a try next year.
     
  8. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Mar 3, 2008

    Years ago, even back when I started school, the long tables had storage in them. It seems like everything went cutesy but not functional when we really need the storage.

    Seating arrangements are easier with desks. I have a couple of students who can't get along with anyone. I would really like to be able to sit them apart but can't do it with tables. When I had desks I could arrange them in groups of 2, 4 or 6 as need or sit everyone separately.
     
  9. repete8

    repete8 Companion

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    I have always wondered about desks in Kindergarten too. I had them at the beginning of the year because they added a K spot. It worked out well for some kiddos. I didn't really get to try different groupings because I only had a limited number of desks. I had mismatched furniture (tables, desks, etc).

    Two years ago, I asked my former principal if I could switch out my tables for desks. He said that I needed to be prepared for parents questioning my reasoning for the desks because it looks like first grade not Kindergarten. That sounds weird to me. Needless to say, I never got my desks.
     
  10. little317

    little317 Groupie

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    Another reason why I am leaning more towards desks is because we have no cubbies in any of the Kdg rooms.
     
  11. SLteaCh

    SLteaCh Companion

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    I like tables for the socialization aspect of kindergarten, which many kids don't get before entering K. I have bins on the table, which emphasizes learning to share and figuring out problems. I also have individual mailboxes for each student. I definitely want to do chair pockets for next year, so the kids don't have to always walk to their mailboxes when they have a paper to take home, and so that I can check folders easier for the kids that don't get the hang of checking for notes from home!
     
  12. bethany1120

    bethany1120 Companion

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    Last year I had this exact same issue when I started teaching K, because the other K teacher uses desks. My principal said it was up to me, but strongly advised me against using desks because there was apparently an uproar with the other K teacher when she started using desks (by teachers who think its inappropriate to have desks in K).

    I did stick with tables, and looking back a year and a half later and getting to observe how desks work in the other K, I am so glad that I stuck to my decision (of having tables). I got a ton of great ideas from this forum on how to manage tables, such as storing supply boxes in crates, and having a table captain each week who is in charge of getting the boxes when needed. I also have a bin on the middle of each table with pencils, community crayons, their journals, etc. The kids love being table captain for the week!

    I love the tables because they are so much more convenient for doing art projects, cleaning and having snack. The other teacher seems to constantly be moving her desks around the room to accommodate for different projects, and is constantly having to tell the kids to stop messing around with the things in their desk. They also like to "hide" things in their desk such as toys, candy, etc. which personally would drive me nuts!

    So I guess it's up to you, but from being in your position a couple of years ago, I'm so glad that I stuck with tables and just adapted different management techniques. Good luck!
     
  13. KinderMissN

    KinderMissN Companion

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    Mar 4, 2008

    Disgusting desk story. A few weeks ago, there were fruit flies all over my classroom. I start looking in desks...and there is a rotting banana in a baggie! Gross. I am not a big fan of desks.
     
  14. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Mar 5, 2008

    I have found all sorts of gross leftovers in their cubbies and even their backpacks! Kindergarten is never dull!
     
  15. kburen

    kburen Cohort

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    Mar 5, 2008

    All 5 of us have desks...in fact....we had desks in K when I went to school myself :) I like the desks because they can keep everything in them. The only down side is that some of them do play in them. I have fixed that problem very easily though. If they fiddle in the desks instead of doing work or listening, I turn their desk around so they can't get inside. They find that they hate having to ask to get their crayon box or pencils and it's a pain to move the desk to get in (they can't always reach over the desk to get in so they have to move it all the way out so they can get to the back since I have them in groups of 8 and 7) and I haven't had the problem since I turned 2 kids around earlier in the year.
     

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