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Schools are switching rows of desks for comfy conference tables

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Nathaniel Cruz (left) and Devonte Johnson (right) share a table with three other students in Emily Beard's sixth grade English Language Arts class at Middle School 821 in Brooklyn, New York. Some teachers complain that when students work in groups they are more likely to distract each other. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)

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Sixth graders Erickson Diaz, Jeanette Lee, and Emerie Nunez (left-right) work collaboratively on a classroom exercise about gender stereotypes at Middle School 821 in Brooklyn, New York. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)

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Sixth grader Erickson Diaz works privately for a moment on a group exercise as teacher Emily Beard walks around the classroom at Middle School 821 in Brooklyn, New York. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)

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Adrian Sanchez, a sixth grader at Middle School 821 in Brooklyn, New York, works with his classmates on a group exercise. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)

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Neat rows of desks may be a thing of the past in America’s classrooms as more educators see the benefits of studying in groups.


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