Molds Fail: Why are Seating Charts Created with One?

Molds Fail:

Why are seating charts created with one?

By Camille Hicks

Interested student = a student who is respectful and gets good grades.

Disruptive student = Disruptive students don’t really seem to care about school.

Getting good grades and being a good student in general is not easy. Usually, it’s not for the reasons you think. Yes, it’s hard getting good grades, but the main problems do not lie within the assignments.

For all of my school life, I’ve been the “good student”, with good grades, and I’m quiet during class. In some cases, “the teachers pet.” However, the hardest part of being an interested student, is being put next to talkative or non-working students. There’s always this underlying, and false, idea that when serious students and non-serious students mix, the classroom will become quiet.

However, this is not always true. Of course in some cases this does work, but most of the time the non-serious, and disruptive students continue on the same way, being disruptive, and the good students are tortured. Imagine, a student who doesn’t care about punishment or rules is going to talk to their friend, whether they’re next to them or across the room. It just doesn’t matter to them, they don’t care. But we do.

Putting interested students next to disruptive ones is not a good idea for many different reasons. For one, a good students works hard. They should be able to be rewarded by sitting next to their friends (who are usually respectful and quiet also), and not punished by sitting next to someone who disrupts class.

Secondly, It makes it hard to maintain focus and get good grades while sitting next to someone who is constantly messing with things or talking. For example, I had a table group in which my grade was a 96%, and after switching groups, it went down to a 88%, granted not all of this may be because of the group, but a lot of it is. It was just the difference between being able to focus and not having to wrangle the group.

Thirdly, you might say “just ignore them”. It’s not that easy to ignore someone calling your name over and over, or grabbing your stuff and messing with it. There’s also a large difference between disruptive, and a little chatty. Chatty is quiet, and often talking/whispering. Disruptive is  messing with stuff, yelling, talking constantly, and not participating/helping within the group.

Most of these reasons also apply to students who need more help. Putting students who have a hard time completing work correctly and need a lot of help with things such as science or math next to a student who doesn’t need a lot of help is also not a good idea. Typically, a student who doesn’t need extra help will spend all their time helping their table group rather than working on their own work, or they will not help the other students and do everything by themselves. The other students at the group, who need extra help, will still be lost, and the student who doesn’t need more help will be doing everything by himself/herself.

I realize that seating charts are often frustrating and confusing. However, the mold for seating charts need to change. You can’t put friends together all the time, and especially not disruptive kids sitting with other disruptive kids.

School is hard enough as it is, and we shouldn’t be worried or angry walking into a class based on the seating chart.