Seating Swap Showing Promise in School

Mrs. Meador’s first-graders are really on the ball. It’s all part of an experiment at a Ralston elementary school that’s proving to be an all-around success.

We first brought you the story in January – a classroom full of kids with no chairs.

First-grader Mikee Espino said, “It's pretty cool because I'm just like getting my muscles going, like, I'm trying to keep my balance."

Teacher Sarah Meader said, “The main thing that I noticed just by watching and observing is their behavior. When they come from the core ball to the rug, they are much more calm and able to focus longer."

Mrs. Meader unveiled the project knowing that the kids liked to wiggle. She tapped into the energy through the use of the balls that serve as seats.

Meader said the kids are able to bounce and move on the ball and that rhythm helps with things like counting. It apparently works. Scores increased by 30 percent in a series of standardized math tests.

First-grader Joyce Mackey said she liked the change. “I was happy and I was bouncing around,” she said. “It was fun."

It’s easy to forget the kids are first-graders when silence fills the room. Mrs, Meader credits the core balls for the success.

“I think that we are on the verge of something and recognizing that kids these days need to be moving, we do too much sitting at home."

Sarah Meader hopes to keep the core balls in her class for continued use and hopefully spread the program to others as well.

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