When a teacher decided to ‘be the change’

Recently one of our teachers from the School Transformation Program made a change in her classroom after experiencing a powerful practice in one of Bhumi’s workshops. 

Shanthi, a teacher of Seva Samajam Nursery and Primary School says, “As a teacher, I want to concentrate on my children physically and mentally. The setup of a classroom is very important to how a classroom is being managed. The energy children possess is better felt when seated in a circle rather than the regular matrix setup, and the ultimate satisfaction is when you observe that your children begin to love the classroom environment.”


The physical setup of chairs, tables, and presentation in a classroom can significantly influence learning. Seating arrangements can impact how the instructor communicates with students and how the students interact with one another, impacting engagement, motivation, and focus.

Traditional Or Row type seating
The traditional lecture setup typically consists of rows of fixed seating. Supervision is easier with the row method because of spaces in between. But this method makes the teacher a central figure and most of the times, communication is there between the first few rows and the teacher. The backbenchers have a lot of fun though!

Semi-Circle Arrangement
When a teacher is conducting discussions, a semi-circular arrangement can be apt to facilitate the flow of ideas, thoughts, and expressions. Students have a clear view of the person expressing their opinions; educators find it easy to control the discussion and can also motivate passive students to pitch in.

Free Vs Arranged Seating
Another important point to consider is whether to assign seats in a seating arrangement or provide students the freedom to select their own spots. A rotation system when integrated into the classroom can ensure that students are not categorized as front or backbenchers. Everyone is given an opportunity to sit in the front, middle and back.

Importance of posture
Classroom seating must support healthy posture, allowing the student to place both feet firmly on the floor and their backs against their chairs.

Bhumi’s School Transformation Programme supports low-income schools on their journey to becoming exemplary schools in their communities. Currently ongoing in 15 schools across Chennai, and supported by corporates like Qualcomm, FLEX, Greenergy, SEW Eurodrive, the programme also focuses on building the capacities of the teachers for improved content delivery.

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