A Desk or Not a Desk?

A Desk or not a desk? That is the question!

The last two years I've been without a desk in my 4th grade classroom. I never really felt a need for a desk since I am always on my feet. The desk also always ended up with stacks of papers piled high. I have been much better organized without it. However, this year due to having to move buildings to a new classroom, I've gained a teacher's desk. So, I'm thinking of keeping the desk and maybe making it a special place for students to sit, or maybe I'll just use it again to stack papers. Ahh! I could even change it into a tech station for my technology which is housed in the lab you see by the wall. What are your thoughts?

Here it is, excuse the mess!

As you can see from the pic above I have lots of decorating to do with those tan walls. I'm hoping my red chevron border will help brighten up the place a bit.


  1. Before I started teaching Read 180, my desk was flat up against the wall. I had one "private" drawer and the rest were used hold classroom supplies. The top was pretty clear, just their portfolio crate and a few knickknacks. Now with the extra computers, there is not wall space for it that way, it is perpendicular to the wall. I am rarely at it, but it is nice to take a breather every once in a while or to have a quick private talk with a student. It is still mostly open to students, but it gives me a space for "privacy" when I need it. Plus it makes a great space to perch on while the kids are working:).

    1. Love the idea of using it as a space for "privacy" as well as allowing the students to access materials from the drawers.

  2. I like the idea of making it a tech station. When I got rid of my desk it was because I was running out of square footage for the kids. If your room is going to have a large class size I would think about using the desk for the kids.


  3. I had a reward coupon for 'sit at teacher's desk'. The kids loved it, so keep the desk for special times...or a paper sorting area! I need my desk for recording lunch count ( I had a laptop on my desk), so the lucky student could sit there after 9:00 am.(also Mondays and Fridays found the desk unavailable).

    Good luck with your room. A colorful border will make a world of difference.

  4. I use my desk as a technology station, to store materials, and for students to use as a reward.

    I have my teacher computer (that is hooked up to the Smart Board) along with our document camera on the desk.

    I also have some plastic drawers to store worksheets along with my teacher toolbox with supplies that I need readily available.

    I don't typically sit at my desk, so throughout the day I use it as part of our reward system.

    I'm glad to have found a fellow 4th grade teacher. I can't wait to see how you organize your teacher desk and classroom. I will be checking back often.

    Elementary School Garden

  5. I saw another teacher use her old desk for a writing station for the students. She kept all the things there that they would need (pencils, pens, pads of paper, editing lists, etc.) in the drawers. She just pushed it up against a wall under the chalkboard.

  6. It sounds like I'm in the minority -- I use my desk as my desk. I file, pile and plan there. I rarely sit at it during the day, but neither do the kids. I admire you for giving up your desk before. Using it for a technology station is a very cool idea too. My class is around 22 students a year, so space has never been an issue. If it was, I would definitely consider giving up my desk.

    Your blog is so awesome! How did I never find you before? I'm so glad you found me so I could find you!! :) Looking forward to following you!

    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

  7. I teach middle school, so my perspective is different. I have a desk and it faces the students who are, in turn, facing me and the board. At least that is my intention when I set it up each September. I do a lot of walking around and cajoling the students to work, stay on task, work with others, etc. But I do need a "hands off" place and that is my desk...I do love the lively ideas of using it as a workstation for students, but it just isn't doable right now for my class.

  8. Much like 4321Teach, I got rid of my desk due to space. I had 27 fifth graders in a tiny room! Also, my principal was going through this minimalist phase. I have not had one since! That has been 7 years. For me it has just a place to put stuff until it just piled! Without the desk, I've been more organized. Of course, that's just me!
    If you keep it, love the idea as a writing center!
    Fabulous Fifth Grade Fun

  9. I keep going back and forth about a desk. I moved to a new building and have a smaller teacher desk. I am really thinking of getting rid of it. Usually I just pile stuff on it during the day and spend my time after school, unpiling it!! I am going to wait until my room is finished being arranged. I am such a visual person, I have to move everything to see if I like it!
    Good luck!


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