With all the competition going on in the outside world to do their best, the only ones who are being affected is our kids. With all the heavy books that they are burdened with and also long studying hours that they have at home is putting more and strain on them. Irish designer Simon Dennehy has come up with an excellent furniture for primary school children, who takes care of their correct posture, chair height. To have a healthy back, posture is very important and would reduce problems like poor digestion, nausea, headaches and bad circulation, which arises because of incorrect posture.
Perch is the result of a two year research MA in Industrial Design with the National College of Art and Design in Dublin, Ireland by Simon Dennehy. The results show that it is impractical to design a chair for primary school students, without considering the desk as an item of equal importance. The main objective of the project is to encourage students to sit and work in a much higher position.
The seat and backrest benefit from ventilated slots throughout. This reduces weight, increases user comfort and creates a visually stimulating aesthetic for the students of today. The chair’s simple yet effective height mechanism prevents accidental release and requires the student to stand to adjust the height. The chair’s legs protrude from back, while incorporating a footrest. This allows the student complete freedom of leg movement. The front wings at either side of the seat are completely flexible. This patented design prevents build up of pressure under the student’s legs, while the resistive feedback encourage the students to continually move their legs playfully, increasing blood flow and muscle use.
The desk profile incorporates an elbow rest, where students can perch themselves during task work. This decreases load on their mid-sections. The profile, from co-extruded hollow-section polycarbonate, incorporates a soft rubberised working surface (in orange). This provides a warm tactile surface that can resist abuse, prevent books from slipping, and can be easily cleaned. A storage trough, at the rear of the desk, includes a book ledge for when students are copying from text books. An accessories tray hooks onto the desk edge and is replaceable with a Lego base, or arts and crafts palette. This “hot-swap” system is developable, and makes task change-over much faster, and tidier.
Schools furniture among the majority of schools, internationally, is severely damaging to students’ health and, as a direct result, they can expect to develop serious disorders and illnesses in later life. The research carried out shows conclusively that school children, in particular, sit inappropriately during their primary school years, as a result of the failings of the furniture’s design.
Schools are the offices for children. They spend a large amount of their youth attending both primary and secondary schools, and during that time, are likely to be sitting at a desk. A drastic change to the standards, which dictate measurements for furniture in schools, is required.
It is hoped that this project will encourage more researchers, designers and ergonomists to peruse the subject matter so that, in years to come, the quality and understanding of furniture requirements for students will radically improve, to the benefit of the students, teachers, education and health system.
Designer : Simon Dennehy