Have you ever noticed how everyone always sits at the same desk?
It’s not elementary school anymore, there are no assigned seats. Every student has the freedom to sit anywhere in the classroom, but nobody does.
Almost everyone chooses a seat at random on the first day of class and those seats becomes their seats, through some undocumented process. Sure, over the first few days, there is some occasional swapping or switching sides of the room but by week two hardly anyone dares to sit in a different seat.
Maybe it’s a learned behavior; an ingrained part of our classroom etiquette. After all, we were taught to sit in the same seat by our kindergarten teachers, and after 13 years of always sitting in the same place it’s just unnatural to move around.
But even shifting over just one seat will often earn you several confused and annoyed glares (I’m not kidding; try it sometime). You may have needed to switch seats to reach the plug for your computer, but nobody understands that. All they realize is that they have to shift over and everyone is out of place, and you are in their way.
Even professors expect you to be seated in the same seat. Many of them find it confusing when a single student switches sides. What would happen if the whole room switched every day? We’d probably drive them absolutely crazy.
Plus, you do get to know the people in your class better if everyone always sits in the same spot. As the semester progresses you become more and more familiar with the people next to you, and you’re more likely to complete assigned projects with the people you know. But what about the students on the other side of the room? Your soul mate and future study buddy could be sitting five desks over, but you’d never know because you always sit in the same exact spot. Do you ever get to meet them? Would switching sides even work? Or would you just annoy everyone in the class and cause the friends you usually sit with to think that you don’t like them…or something.
Ah well…the things you notice (and think about incessantly) when you’re supposed to be taking notes.
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