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Bouncy Bands help fidgety students focus

October 29, 2017 GMT

FLORENCE, S.C. – Students at Greenwood Elementary School say they know tapping feet on tile floors or drumming pencils on desks is annoying, but they say expending their energy also helps them focus.

“We students tend to get antsy,” said Ryan Lyerly, a sixth-grader.

Seeing students’ need to move, Dianne Rowell, a teacher at Greenwood started using Bouncy Bands in her classroom.

Bouncy Bands are made of stretchable material and attach to the front feet of desks. Students can bounce or rest their feet on the bands.

Rowell said students are asked to sit still, but giving them opportunities to move around actually increases their concentration. She said that after one year of using Bouncy Bands, she and her students are convinced of their positive effects.

“They’re able to concentrate more,” Rowell said. “They tell me that they understand what they’re learning better when they can move in this classroom.”

Unlike other nervous-energy movements, Rowell said, Bouncy Bands do not easily distract others. Since they are underneath desks, this limits eye-level distractions.

Deanna Cobb, a sixth-grade student in Rowell’s class, said she used to constantly tap her pencil on her desk, but not anymore.

“When I put my feet on it, and I bounce it, it feels good,” she said. “It blocks everything else out that I’m not supposed to do.”

Ryan Lyerly said that at first he was skeptical about the desk add-on, but now he uses his Bouncy Band all the time, especially when he is reading.

Three students at Clemson University recently completed undergraduate research about the use of Bouncy Bands, and they concluded that Bouncy Bands most strongly benefited students who are typically less engaged in the classroom.

Rowell said Bouncy Bands are reasonably priced and durable. She received the bands through a Donors Choose grant.

Other Florence School District One schools that have Bouncy Bands are Theodore Lester Elementary School, Moore Intermediate School and Southside Middle School.

More information about the product may be found at bouncybands.com.