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Old 08-17-2013, 05:42 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia, Pa
1,363 posts, read 676,097 times
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Default Should Kids Have Assigned Lunch Seats?

Hey Guys, I was just thinking about my days in school and remember having assigned lunch seats.

I hated them. Do you think kids should be assigned to a table to sit for lunch?
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:50 PM
 
341 posts, read 143,102 times
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No. I see no benefit to imposing such.
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
24,685 posts, read 15,826,373 times
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i have mixed feelings about this. Cliques can be so hurtful, especially starting in middle school. They sometimes leave kids out, bully others and make their life miserable. The shy kids are left to fend for themselves and may not feel good about just going to sit with kids they might want to be friends with. I was the new kid in school too many times to remember and I can still see myself standing with my tray in the cafeteria wondering where to sit. Usually there was a kid or group of kids who would invite me to sit with them but not always. Assigned seats force kids to at least acknowledge others maybe outside their usual circle of friends.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:06 PM
 
9,917 posts, read 7,032,506 times
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Our kids don't have assigned seats, but they do have assigned tables and they sit with their class at least in k-4 (elementary). I am not sure about the middle school as I never asked my granddaughter about that.

It hasn't been a problem so far and neither of my grandchildren minded it.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia, Pa
1,363 posts, read 676,097 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
i have mixed feelings about this. Cliques can be so hurtful, especially starting in middle school. They sometimes leave kids out, bully others and make their life miserable. The shy kids are left to fend for themselves and may not feel good about just going to sit with kids they might want to be friends with. I was the new kid in school too many times to remember and I can still see myself standing with my tray in the cafeteria wondering where to sit. Usually there was a kid or group of kids who would invite me to sit with them but not always. Assigned seats force kids to at least acknowledge others maybe outside their usual circle of friends.
I must admit that this is a very good point
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:31 PM
 
Location: VAB
3,029 posts, read 3,260,339 times
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I had to assign a few seats last year to keep a few kids apart, but as long as there are no behavior issues I say no.
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Old 08-17-2013, 06:40 PM
 
421 posts, read 220,959 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
i have mixed feelings about this. Cliques can be so hurtful, especially starting in middle school. They sometimes leave kids out, bully others and make their life miserable. The shy kids are left to fend for themselves and may not feel good about just going to sit with kids they might want to be friends with. I was the new kid in school too many times to remember and I can still see myself standing with my tray in the cafeteria wondering where to sit. Usually there was a kid or group of kids who would invite me to sit with them but not always. Assigned seats force kids to at least acknowledge others maybe outside their usual circle of friends.
I don't think that would matter though in a school where cliques are a huge problem.

If anything, that gives cliques an excuse for their bullying because they can always say, "Well you forced me to sit next to this person I hate, so it's your fault."
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Old 08-17-2013, 07:08 PM
 
3,115 posts, read 924,057 times
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Not at all!

Kids are required to keep quiet and sit in their assigned seats all day long. Lunch is their only 30 minutes of freedom. A child left out due to cliques can be fixed.

At some point in life, the shy kids/introverts are going to have to learn to that the world wasn't made for them. And as far a new kids go (I've been one, several times), it's a lot easier when teachers have them buddy up with the friendly kid in class. Unfortunately, that's just the way life is...
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Old 08-17-2013, 07:12 PM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
4,489 posts, read 5,258,055 times
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I teach middle school. The first two weeks of school, I walk my 5th period class to the cafeteria, they all sit at the same table, and I pick them all up and walk them back 30 minutes later. After the first two weeks, they may sit wherever they'd like and I no longer play mother duck.

Those first two weeks are torturous for that age. It's all about cliques and feeling included, so by setting precedent the first couple weeks that everyone has a seat, and it's okay to sit with people who aren't your friend, we find there are a lot less issues the rest of the year when kids can sit with whomever they'd like.
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Old 08-18-2013, 06:43 AM
LLN
 
Location: Upstairs closet
3,517 posts, read 4,118,012 times
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We start off with open lunch. If we have trouble, and we invariably do, we go to seating by room. The next ratchet up is assigned seats.

The first poster was right, the children hate it. After a week or so, if they improve, and I can assure you they do, we open it up again. We do this very infrequently twice. Never three times. It works.

Personally, I hate it, because it is just one more thing to keep track of, but it is very very effective.
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