Are The Best School Desks & Student Desks Fixed or Unfixed?

Posted by Ryan Owens on Apr 5th 2016

Furnishing a classroom is an important undertaking.

The goal is to create an environment that’s appealing and comfortable for the students, but also focused and conducive to learning. A classroom must be orderly and regimented, yet leave room for creativity, growth and self-expression. Supporting the success of the teacher and students is key, and every detail should be considered, from the student desks to the paint color chosen for the walls to what is displayed around the classroom.

Probably the most fundamental components of a classroom are the school desks. Students will spend the majority of their time seated at the desk while engaging with the teacher and taking in the material presented. Selecting the right desk style is crucial to the success of both the instructor and the students, and it should not be taken lightly.

Two of the main considerations when selecting student desks is whether to choose a style with a fixed (attached) school chair or an unfixed and moveable chair that is independent of the desk. There is quite a difference between these two configurations in terms of the type of atmosphere they will create in the classroom, and we will explore these aspects as well as durability, ease of rearranging and storage, comfort, and price.

School Desks with Fixed (Attached) Chairs

Most of us are quite familiar with the attached school chair desk style, as it is a favorite for grade school and middle school classrooms. Many of us began our education in this type of desk. Some high schools and even colleges use this style as well. Fixed student desks offer an all-in-one solution for students in the classroom setting. Desks with fixed student chairs tend to be a bit sturdier and more durable, and they have other features and advantages in some kinds of classrooms.

For example, classrooms with younger children can benefit from a higher measure of structure and order than those teaching older kids or young adults. Desks that have their school chairs unattached are easy to move around, which can pose a distraction for both the students and the instructor. In classrooms with smaller children, a desk with a fixed student chair and table combination is probably the better choice.

Comfort may be sacrificed in this configuration since the desk and chair combination cannot be customized to the student; however, this affects smaller children less significantly than older ones. If a fixed desk and chair configuration will be used for middle schools, high schools or even colleges, care should be taken that they are an adequate size to accommodate students with a range of sizes and body types.

As for cost, the difference between a fixed or unfixed desk model isn’t substantial and can vary from one model to the next. In some cases, you will save by buying desks with fixed school chairs; however, with other makes and models, those with unfixed chairs will be cheaper.

Student Desks with Unfixed Chairs

An unfixed school desk is just as it sounds; the desk (table) portion and the chair are separate entities. This configuration clearly offers far more flexibility and customization for the student, as the chair can be shifted in any direction to allow for maximum comfort. Taller students will have no problem adjusting the desk to their ideal placement of chair and table, allowing for a more conducive learning experience.

However, as discussed above, unfixed school desks could pose a problem for younger children who are more easily distracted as well as less coordinated than older students. Having an unattached chair could lead to excessive movement in the classroom. This additional motion and the sound of sliding chairs could pose a distraction to the students. In some cases, they might actually be at risk for tipping over.

That said, unfixed school desks are more flexible, making them ideal for older, physically larger students such as in high school and college settings. However, they may not be a good fit in classrooms with smaller children who are more prone to fidgeting and distraction. However, advanced youngsters who show a propensity for excelling in school could be just fine in an unfixed desk. It is up to the discretion of the instructor or school board to determine which will be a better fit for each specific classroom.

Again, cost should not be too much of a concern, as different styles of both fixed and unfixed school desks can overall be fairly similar in cost, with some variations. The more important consideration is selecting the right desk style for the student age as well as the subject matter of the class being taught.

Special Consideration

Class subject matter can indeed factor into desk style choice. For example, subjects requiring more structure and focus could benefit from a classroom with fixed student chairs. Subjects like mathematics, history, geography and some of the sciences might benefit from such a configuration.

However, the classrooms for subjects that require more creativity, flexibility or lab work might be better outfitted with unfixed model desks. Art, music, or topics that require projects, lab work or breaking off into study groups could be better facilitated in a classroom that has moveable chairs separate from the table portion of the desk. The purpose of the class will help determine what school furniture will serve you best.

Transport, Storage and Durability

Lastly, the need for transport or storage should be considered. If the desks will have to be moved or stored regularly, unfixed models are stackable and much more portable than fixed models. Fixed desks are heavier, harder to move and cannot be stacked.

Again, while in some cases a fixed desk offers more durability than an unfixed model, all of the products Classroom Essentials carries will have a high degree of quality. Whether fixed or unfixed, our desks will stand the test of time.

If you are still unsure about the best desk type to purchase for your classroom or school, feel free to contact us with your questions and concerns. Despite the fact that Classroom Essentials offers the impressive selection of a large business and substantial cost savings when you buy in bulk, we also retain the high level of customer service you’d expect from a family-owned business. Don’t hesitate to contact us for all your school desk needs – we look forward to serving you!