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From Soft Skills to Soft Seating: A Review of MooreCo's Spring Webinar

Posted by MooreCo Inc on Apr 2, 2021 12:45:00 PM

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Where do we go from here? That's the question on the minds of many Americans. As the vaccine rolls out, most are looking forward to resuming school, work, and gathering as normal. But what does this mean for workplace and classroom environments?

MooreCo gathered answers from the experts in the spring webinar, Thrive Forward: Creating Environments for Optimal Human Development and Wellbeing. Throughout this week-long online conference, speakers from a variety of fields talked about the 6 principles of human development and how to integrate them into room design for people to “thrive”.  In case you missed it, all sessions will be available online to download. There were many takeaways from each session, so if you yet to view them, here are some of the highlights. 

What You Missed: Pre-Webinar Kickoff Happy Hour & New Product Introduction

The Gist: VP of Marketing Polly Moore and Director of Product Development for MooreCo Ryan Haase discussed the thought behind the Thrive philosophy and how to design spaces with optimal wellbeing at the core. They also introduced newest products, including a collection that was designed with Thrive and the 6 developmental principles in mind.

Why It Matters: In 2021, it is more important than ever to consider the needs of every student and worker to get back on track after a year of isolation and anxiety. Learning environments and workplaces can be set up in a way that helps each person thrive. 

Who Will Like This: If you’ve been a fan of MooreCo products and appreciate hearing the thought process behind design, you will enjoy this session. Marketing professionals will enjoy hearing Polly Moore speak about the thought process behind the Thrive line, while designers will more closely resonate with the Ryan’s take. Manufacturers, vendors, and furniture buffs will appreciate hearing Ryan go into the finely tuned details of MooreCo’s newest line of products.

Top Products Related to this Topic: The “AKT” Tables were a particular highlight. With sleek and simple designs, this line aims to help people keep people thriving through action. The tables can be used for individual work, collaborative spaces or teaming. 

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What You Missed: Physical Development: The Power of Posture and Movement for Creative Thinking and Positive Mood

The Gist: Dr. Amy Rohsner, PT and Dr. Lisa Harris, OT of Healthworks Ergonomics in Austin led a discussion on physical development and optimal posture for schools and the workplace.

Why it Matters: Physical well-being is a key to learning and creating. Ergonomically-sound environments and furniture can help adolescents and those in the workforce stay healthy and productive, limiting injuries and boosting morale.

Who Will Like This: Anyone who cares about long-term health in the workplace will enjoy this session. Those in healthcare professions, district leaders or educators, and professionals seeking guidance for furniture buying will appreciate this session.

Top Products Related to this Topic: Speakers talked about the importance for optimal spinal support and the ability to move throughout the work or school day. MooreCo’s movement-enabling products like the Grow Stools, upcoming Soft Sway Seating and AKT Tables (which can be used to stand at) are great recommendations following this session, but barely scratch the surface for MooreCo’s ergonomic and active learning products. Simply put, the choices for mobile and flexible furniture at MooreCo are vast.

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What You Missed: Intellectual Development: Teens and Teamwork – Power of Peers on Brain Development

The Gist: Dr. Jessica Church-Lang of the University of Texas is the head of the Austin neuroimaging site of the Texas Learning Disabilities Research Center project on reading intervention and brain change. She discussed brain development from adolescence and beyond, mentioning growth milestones and considerations for learners of all abilities.

Why It Matters: Dr. Church-Lang gave an empowering presentation on reframing adolescence as a moment of opportunity and development, and explained how to support and inspire teens.

Who Will Like This: Parents and educators of teens will especially enjoy this session. Anyone who works with adolescents and those who design for intermediate and higher learning spaces will particularly get a lot out of this session.

Products Related to this Topic: Dr. Church-Lang emphasized the importance of autonomy and catering to individual learning needs for teens. Products related to active learning that provide choices were mentioned, including soft seating collaborative areas like the Orbit MediaSpace and tiered seating. Dr. Church-Lang also mentioned the need for privacy areas for those who learn better on their own or are easily overstimulated. This includes MooreCo’s Study Carrels and Privacy Pods.

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What You Missed: Using Six Human Development Principles to Inform Design Choices

The Gist: Legat Architects’ Director of Interior Design, Sylvia Kowalk, and Director of Pre-K-12 Education, Robin Randall, shared their ideas for creating environments with mind and body wellness at the core.

Why it Matters: The 6 development principles can be used to inform design to facilitate health, achievement, and a sense of belonging. Robin and Sylvia proved it with real-life examples of work they’ve done to improve schools for students to thrive.

Who Will Like This: Most everyone will enjoy this session. Designers, architects, educators, manufacturers, and parents will all get something out of it. Sylvia and Robin are very well aligned with the Thrive philosophy and really shine when discussing the concepts behind their design choices.

Top Products Related to this Session: Compass Cabinets and tables were mentioned as Sylvia and Robin showed a high-tech STEM lab for adolescent learners in a refurbished school. It was very inspiring to see them take an aging space and make it new with up-to-date active learning furniture.

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What You Missed: Psychological Development: Self Confidence, Identity, and How the Senses Perceive Environment

The Gist: Associate Professor of Psychology at Rice University, Dr. Chris Fagundes, presented on on factors that influence psychological wellbeing in schools and the workplace.

Why It Matters: Unlocking the keys to optimal psychological development can help students succeed in adolescence and throughout life.

Who Will Like This: Educators, designers, mental health professionals, and anyone with an interest in how environment impacts psychology.

Products Related to this Session: Dr. Fagundes mentioned the integration of technology and learning, and how this affects young minds. Integrative technology like the i3SIXTY, and furniture that creates a sense of co-creating (configurable desks like the Hierarchy Shapes Desk with Porcelain Steel Top) will help students maintain both a sense of autonomy and socialization.

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What You Missed: Moral Development: Behavioral Ethics and Empathy in Schools and Corporate Culture

The Gist: Cara Biasucci is the Director of Ethics Education at the Center for Leadership and Ethics at the University of Texas. She discussed the importance of ethics education in schools and the workplace, and how learning compassion can create unity and acceptance in organizations.

Why it Matters: Corporate culture can be better served by educational ethics. Cara Biasucci broke down bias and how it contributes to preferential treatment that inhibits diversity and equity.

Who Will Like This: Anyone with an interested in corporate culture, diversity, equity, and inclusion, including district leaders and CEOs, will appreciate this session.

Top Products Related to this Session: Collaborative environments that encourage engaging with others can be inviting, bringing people together and creating a heightened sense of unity. For both work and educational environments, this includes a combination of soft seating spaces to gather, whiteboards for brainstorming, and configurable desks that can bring people together.

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What You Missed: Revealing an E-Sports Centers Designed to With the Thrive Principles in Mind

The Gist: Alexa Feldman,  Interior Design Coordinator for LPA Design Studios, explains how to create cutting edge and interactive learning space for students to work and play.

Why it Matters: More schools today are incorporating e-sports environments to help students channel creativity and work together toward a common goal.

Who Will Like This: Designers, architects, educators, district leaders, and those in the furniture manufacturing industry will enjoy this session.

Top Products Related to this Session: Alexa used MooreCo furniture to create the ideal e-sports environment, with the Ergo Ex Economic Chair and the Cocoon Media Space, giving students all-day comfort for max creativity.

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 What You Missed: Social Emotional Development: Emotional Intelligence and Student Leadership

The Gist: Dr. Maurice Elias of Rutgers University is a professor of Psychology and the director of the Rutgers Social-Emotional and Character Development Lab. He gave a presentation on emotional education how it can translate into self-confidence and leadership.

Why it Matters: Social-emotional learning in educational settings has never been more important. Similarly, corporate culture is becoming more reliant on leadership and co-working that involve “soft skills”, or skills based on emotional intelligence. As educators and designers, it’s possible to nurture students’ social-emotional growth to create pathways to leadership at school and in life.

Who Will Like This: Employers, mental health professionals, educators, designers, parents, and anyone interested in social-emotional development will gain a lot of insight from this presentation.

Top Products Related to this Session: Dr. Elias said that students “need to be able to communicate clearly and proudly” to flourish. MooreCo’s Glass Boards and mobile whiteboards are ideal for allowing students to brainstorm together and have their ideas heard by peers. The new Hierarchy Creator Desk will also be great for students or coworkers to come together and share ideas. 

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 What You Missed: Technology in Learning: From Air Quality to Culture Integration

The Gist: Lars Van Sweevelt, Director of Product Development & Marketing at i3-Technologies gave a discussion on technology in education and the workplace in a post-pandemic world.

Why it Matters: Technology products can help to bridge the gap between the era of virtual learning and remote working to a “new normal” where safety and health are a priority.

Who Will Like This: Anyone with an interest in tech products for schools and the workplace, including educators, district leaders, and those who manufacture and distribute leading-edge tech products.

Top Products Related to this Session: Although i3Technologies boasts many amazing technological tools that have helped schools and businesses stay connected throughout the pandemic, the most exciting new development i3 has to offer may be the i3CAIR, an air-quality monitor that helps maintain optimal conditions for health through a simple device. This will help create assurance for those returning to the workplace and schools who have concern about staying healthy following the pandemic.

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What You Missed: Spiritual Development: Design for Mindfulness and Spaces that Encourage Harmony

The Gist: Feng Shui expert Will LeStrange discussed environmental factors that can influence mood and wellbeing for students and workers in every space, while MooreCo Design Team Manager Molly Cox showed some spaces with Feng Shui in action.

Why it Matters: Feng Shui is an ancient practice that dates back over 5,000 years. It can help students and workers have a better experience in their environments by implementing mindfulness and design that helps connect people to nature.

Who Will Like This: Designers who love trying new techniques and are looking for inspiration will love this session. Those who are adventuresome and tend to think outside the normal design box will appreciate hearing Will’s journey from holistic healing to design. Architects, lovers of furniture, and those who believe in combining nature with style will appreciate session 10.

Top Products Related to this Session: Will and Molly pointed to the benefits of patterns within work and educational spaces that mimic patterns found in nature. For example, lines that curve and flow are more beneficial than straight lines. So the Schoolworks curved soft seating and bookshelves create more of a sense of harmony within each space.

 Thrive Webinar 2021 Cafeteria Environment