Hertz Furniture Implements Creative Solutions - Changing Classroom Configuration Leads To Better Knowledge Retention
The conversion, which also involved changing the physical classroom to a more flexible environment, "resulted in not only a better understanding of subject material by the students, but also better retention of it, "says Julie Barber, Director of Campus Planning for the Dallas – Fort Worth area private school.
"Because these students are more engaged in the process, they also seem to be more empowered by the experience.
"Not all students learn the same. But, when they are put in an physical environment where they are encouraged to interact with their peers to better understand the material, it works very well," she adds.
The school, which has some 1,300 students from pre-kindergarten to grade 12, introduced the concept at the request of some of its teachers following the construction of a new two-story high school building two years ago.
Students taking classes in foreign languages and social studies were the first to try the new approach. "Now most of our other teachers are eager to use it," she says.
FLEXIBLE LEARNING CENTER
According to Mrs. Barber, a key component of the program's success is the ability to create a flexible space with appropriate furniture for the students to work in.
"We had a furniture and fixture budget based on our needs and received quotes from three vendors. The winning bid went to Hertz Furniture from Ramsey, New Jersey.
"Not only was Hertz Furniture competitive in its pricing, but more importantly, its team, lead by John Basse, Regional Manager for our area, sat down with our department heads to really understand our needs and came back with the creative solutions we required," says Mrs. Barber.
The solutions included using triangular shaped desks on casters with hard plastic surfaces, similar to dry erase boards, paired with comfortable chairs. These desks can be easily configured in groups to form various pod arrangements depending upon the type of student to student interaction the teachers are looking for.
FURNITURE IN Over 20,000 U.S. SCHOOLS
The school, which incorporated Hertz Furniture's innovative school furniture into its new classrooms, commons areas, gym, and cafeteria, not only strives to produce well rounded students, but is proud of the fact that 99 per cent of its graduates go on to higher educational institutions.
"Liberty Christian School is one of over 20,000 public, charter, and private schools in the U.S. using our furniture" says David Mocton, President of Hertz Furniture. "There are 1,280 in Texas alone.
"For over 50 years, our in-house experts in educational ergonomics and classroom design have proactively sought input from teachers and other experts so that we can provide the furniture that schools need for today and tomorrow. The new flexible desks we introduced to Liberty Christian School evolved from our conversations with them about their teaching style, curriculum, and budget. The desks are now part of the school's furniture standard which we helped Liberty Christian School set,"he added.
Mr. Mocton stresses that one size does not fit all. "We also provide furniture solutions for students with disabilities, including a full range of wheelchair accessible tables and desks that meet standards of the Americans With Disabilities Act."
AFFORDABLE STARTER PACKAGES
"We have long recognized that schools have budget restrictions and the current economic situation puts additional pressure on school administrations", Mr. Mocton adds.
"For this reason Hertz Furniture is introducing Flexible Learning Area Starter Packages. The all-in-one packages make it easy and affordable for schools to modernize their media centers, classrooms or commons areas with flexible and collaborative furniture to encourage student collaboration and creativity. Starter packages include furniture, room design, free shipping, installation, lifetime warranty, and even a school logo"says Mr Mocton.
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About Hertz Furniture: Hertz Furniture is the furniture dealer of choice for schools, religious institutions, businesses, and government offices, providing top quality commercial furniture and superior customer service for more than 50 years. Free interior design & project planning, fast quotes, quick-ship products, eco-friendly furniture, and lifetime warranties are just a few of the ways that Hertz Furniture has been providing added value to its customers.
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