Research shows that kids learn better when they aren’t forced to sit still, glued to a desk or chair for hours on end during a school day. But can they actually fidget, squirm and wiggle their way to better grades in a classroom? And can they do it in a way that’s not disruptive and promotes productivity? According to Scott Ertl, a Winston-Salem, North Carolina elementary school counselor, they can – especially with the help of his effective solution called “Bouncy Bands” that is quickly winning over teachers and students nationally.
Ertl has spent several years refining and perfecting Bouncy Bands, an innovative classroom tool that aids “kinesthetic learning” for kids. Bouncy Bands are heavy duty rubber straps that attach to the legs of student desks that allow the kids to lightly bounce their feet and stretch their legs as a way to release their extra energy, anxiety, and boredom during the day while working quietly in a classroom. The Bouncy Bands come with support pipes that keep the bands suspended at the perfect height for kids’ feet to rest and bounce.
In a national survey of 144 teachers and 686 students in 22 states:
87% of students said that Bouncy Bands helped them feel calmer during tests
92% of students said that Bouncy Bands let them move so they can relax betting in class
88% of teachers reported that kids using Bouncy Bands focused better in class
76% of teachers reported that kids using Bouncy Bands tended to stay on task longer
Bouncy Bands are also an excellent resource for those students who suffer from test anxiety. Nationwide, as many as 38% of students have moderate to high test anxiety, making it the most prevalent scholastic impairment for students. Bouncy Bands help those students reduce their stress and focus more on the learning tasks at hand since the product helps soothe the anxiety they feel.
Ertl is not new to making breakthroughs in active learning in education. In 2009, he created the nation’s first “Read and Ride” program for students to ride exercise bikes and read books at the same time. Hundreds of schools around the world have replicated his program in their schools.
Teachers have used crowdfunding efforts to get Bouncy Bands into their classrooms so all students can benefit.
More than 400 teachers nationally have turned to DonorsChoose.org to get funded to equip their entire classes.