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Ergonomics for Children Around the World

As technology continues to move into the classroom, we expect that ergonomics components will be added to guidelines, policies and legislation at the national, school board or individual school level. We would like to share these documents on this page. If you have existing policies with an ergonomics component, please send them to the Web Editor for posting to this site. Thank-you!

IEA 2006/ECEE Moving School Tour in Hannover, Germany was Inspirational!

In informal conjunction with IEA2006, Dr. Dieter Breithecker made possible a tour of a school that has implemented training, designed facilities and uses practices aimed at making it a "Moving School".

Papers and documents in English describing the school and philosophy can be found at: www.bag-haltungundbewegung.de/540.0.html

ECEE members from New Zealand, Israel and the USA were graciously guided by Dr. Breithecker on a tour of the Moving School Friday 7 July 2006 before the IEA Congress in Maastricht, The Netherlands.

At the IEA Triennial Conference in Seoul, Korea, August 24-29, 2003, members of ECEE were treated to a tour of a local elementary school. Thanks to Diane Tien for putting together the following overview!

ECEE Site visit to Seoul National University Elementary School

August 27, 2003

2003 IEA Congress, Seoul Korea  Education for Children in Ergonomics Technical Committee
Korean Host for Tour:  Mr. Dong-Kyung Lee, Ph.D., KOSHA
School Site Translator:  Mr. Keoun Nah, Ph.D./CPE, IDAS

School Facts as relayed to group by Head Prinicipal.  The principal, who gave each of ECEE invited guests his card and a brochure about this school. 

  •  108 years old

  •  Oldest Elementary School in Korea

  • Serves as a training university for teaching staff

  • All teaching staff must have a Masters Degree and be less than 42 years old

The school Mission

  • Provide elementary education

  • Train teachers through Seoul National University

  • Registered research school with the Ministry of Education and therefore serves as an experimental school for new curriculum and practices.

The School Functions

  • Globalization; Korean children returning from abroad have many challenges adapting to the educational culture.  Thus this school accepts these students and makes a special effort to help them have a positive integration. 
    -10 students in each grade or 60 students in the school

  • Role of Teacher:  Each grade level has a Chief or Lead Teacher.  She or He organizes curriculum, scheduling and sharing of duties. Occasionally some teachers will teach a particular subject to many classes. 

  • Creativity is emphasized at the school.  The curriculum may be arranged by teachers to stimulate motivaton in different learning areas. 

  • No grades are given.  Reports with specific comments are given to parents of each child at set intervals during the year.  “student is very active”, “student is very shy”, “student is doing well in math” were examples of comments. 

  • Lottery Admission.  Because the school has an excellent education, applications must be completed and submitted.  Then all applicant parents are invited to a public lottery drawing to select students. 

  • Active PTA.  Parents are welcome to volunteer and when sharing professional experiences are referred to honorary teachers.

 School Tour

We were taken to many classrooms, the library, the computer instruction room, the Internet Access Computer Room, the Science Classroom. 

Regular classrooms;  rows of desks facing front towards the teacher.  Each room has a large screen TV (Samsung) connected to a computer.  The computer is placed on the teacher desk in a dropped down view.  Because teachers we viewed were standing while lecturing and using computer, this created an awkward motion of teacher reaching down to key words or use computer.  See Figures 2 & 10. This school is old and thus furnishings and architecture are more traditional.  Fixed height chairs, children sitting in rows facing teacher at the front of the classroom. 

Computer Room: Also a traditional arrangement of rows facing one direction.  See Figure 5 & 6 for photo.  The furniture was purchased in 2001. 

Internet Room:  computer room had oval tables with 3 chairs and one computer.  See figure 3. There were not students in the room at the time.  The chairs are adjustable. 

Library:  There were fixed height reading tables and computer tables.  The computer tables in the general area and in the dedicated computer room were study carrels.  See Figure 7.

Figure 1 Principal’s Office where we were given tea, cookies and learned about the school.
 
Figure 2 Third grade classroom Teacher
 

Figure 3 Typical Internet Computer and Desk
 
Figure 4  Fourth grade student
 

Figure 5  Computer Classroom.  Furniture purchased in 2001. 
 
Figure 6  Computer chairs are fixed height
 

Figure 7 Library Computer Tables.
 
Figure 8 Rainy Day for School Girls
 

Figure 10 Teacher desk
 
Figure 11 Third grade classroom
 

Figure 12: Ramp between floors (safety and accessibility)

 

Front Row from Left to Right:  Sara Dockrell, Instructor from school, Head Principal, Margo Fraser, Airdre Long, Andrée Woodcock  Back Row: Assistant Principal in charge of Curriculum, Diane Tien, Leon Straker, Clas-Håkan Nygård, Lawrence Schulze, Keoun Nah, ECEE Chair Cheryl Bennett, Dong-Kyung Lee

ECEE group out for a traditional Korean lunch after the school tour
 

 

 

   
   
 
last updated Octover 4, 2006
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