It's an innovative alternative to the traditional desk that incorporates movement. Pinckney Elementary is moving minds through movement. We're in Mount Pleasant for our last Cool School of the week before the summer break.
Mrs. Shoecraft's science class may look like a regular classroom, but if you take a closer look, there's something going on under the table here. Teacher Stacey Shoecraft says, “They are kinesthetic tables, kinesthetic learning tables, and they are to help our kids learn better. My whole thing is move minds for movement.” Their goal is to incorporate movement into learning at Pinckney. The kinesthetic learning tables provide a work out with bicycle peddles, balance, ski swing, cross lateralization, and elliptical, all while seated or standing. Principal Leanne Sheppard says, “Our kinesthetic learning tables, that's pretty exciting. Brain research has really shown that having students move and get active while they're learning actually helps them retain information. It helps them stay focused and engaged. We really focus on trying to get children to move, not just with the tables, but throughout the school and other ways while they're learning.”
Pinckney is the first school in Charleston county to have the tables. They have six right now in one classroom. Other teachers bring their classes in as well. Pinckney hopes to get more. Students wrote letters asking for donations to purchase the equipment. Fifth grade student Sloane Stoklosa says, “They're really neat. Usually in the mornings, I'm really tired from waking up so early, but when you get on these, they help you be more alert and they wake you up. They help be more engaged in the project that you're doing, and help you answer your questions easier.” “It helps me pay attention. Sometimes I get off task. I get back on task. When I'm on the tables, I don't get off task at all,” says fifth grade student Zachariah Stokes. Teacher Stacey Shoecraft says, “Kids need to wiggle a little bit. I think it helps with positive outlooks. I know it does. They come in, and they're just excited, with attention span, with long term and short term memory. That's been proven that it does that.”
Pinckney hopes the initiative will go district wide. The tables cost $20-thousand dollars, and getting them, was a community effort, that began with Pinckney's PTO. The school raised the money through grants and donations, including donations from Roper Hospital, and the Park West Education fund.
Coming up Friday on News 2 Today, we'll present Pinckney Elementary with our Cool School award.