Focus seats, fidget seats, or alternative seating…whatever you call it, having seating options for your students is a great way to help them focus on their schoolwork and get out their energy.
But finding the right alternative seating for the special ed classroom can be tricky!
That’s why I’ve put together a list of the best alternative seating for the special ed classroom. The options are exactly what your classroom needs this school year!
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10 Must-Have Alternative Seating Options for the Classroom
This calming special needs focus seat comes with a gentle vibrating motor to provide soothing sensory support for children. At approximately 9.5″ around, the pillow is perfect for students who need a quiet, relaxing spot to sit and regroup. It’s portable size makes it ideal for traveling from classroom to classroom or from home to school and back again.
If texture is important to your students, this textured vibrating cushion is sure to be a hit. Available in vibrant orange, the plush softness combined with the textured fabric makes this pillow perfectly soothing. The vibrations can be turned on or off depending on your students’ needs. The cushion is 10″ around and a substantial 3″ thick.
If round pillows don’t work well in your classroom space, this green square vibrating cushion is a great alternative. It features the same soothing vibration options as the cushions featured above, but is covered in a smooth green fabric for sensory feedback. Hold it or sit on it to soothe frayed nerves and focus on the tasks at hand.
Desk and table seating is important but finding alternative seating for those spaces isn’t always easy. Wobble Chairs are a great option because they provide the stability of a chair, the flexibility of a stool, and the movement capability that many students need. They are also available in a variety of sizes to fit the needs of all of your students.
Much like Wobble Chairs, the Hokki Stool is the seat that moves while students are sitting down. They can wiggle to their hearts’ content and remain seated while doing it. It’s a great alternative seating option for students who need to move in order to focus.
Exercise balls have been an alternative seating favorite for years. They are relatively inexpensive and can replace traditional chairs at desks. While they are a great option, they do have some drawbacks. The balls are challenging to store in small classrooms, they take up a lot of space, and they have the potential to roll if students are using them incorrectly. If you do decide to use exercise balls, be sure to spend a little bit extra to get ones that are heavy-duty as they will see a lot of wear and tear in the classroom.
Do you have students who like to rock? Zuma chairs are a wonderful option for students who find a rocking motion to be the most soothing. The design is sturdy and durable making them a seating option that will last from year to year.
Wobble cushions provide great texture and balance as alternative seating options. The inflatable versions tend to be less expensive than other seating options so they are especially good if you’re on a tight budget. The material makes them easy to clean and sanitize at the end of the day. Simply deflate them to store!
If you have the opportunity to install hooks in your classroom ceiling, hammock chairs make for a fun and soothing alternative seating option. They create a cocoon and have a gentle sway that can soothe students who need a calming seating location.
Donut balls provide the best of both stability balls and wobble cushions. They provide students with a well to sit in which provides more stability while still allowing them to fidget and wiggle. Since most donut balls are lower to the ground, they are perfect for floor time or to use with lap desks.
Whichever alternative seating you decide to include in your classroom, make sure that it’s durable, easy to clean, and safe for all of the students in your class!