Perch: ergonomic concept desk for stooped schoolchildren


"Perch" is a conceptual exercise to create better desks for schoolchildren. Simon Dennehy's design tilts the desk up like an easel, provides a trough to easily catch pens and markers (and at lunchtime, can be slopped with food), and even a cupholder at the top for drinks. I appreciate that he's used an institutional orange color, as well, although I wonder if that was on purpose.

Project Page [ via Josh Spear]

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  1. Single point of failure at the rear base – metal fatigue will cause those bends to crumble catastrophically.

    Four more welds and ten more inches of pipe per chair will introduce a stabilising triangle which will move the stress.

  2. Kids tend to sit or stand on furniture. I wouldn’t trust that flimsy thing to hold even a child’s weight.

  3. Institutional orange? Not sure what that means. Anyway, as Bardfinn and Cubey point out, a little too prone to the ravages of schoolchildren as they are now. Not sure how easy it would be to reach the objects in the trough at the front from a seated position, either.

    But most importantly, the whole thing looks expensive by comparison with a more standard (read: boring but cheap) desk and chair combination. I guess this is for private schools only. Most public schools would take one look at the price tag and pass.

  4. Thanks for comments guys. Just to clarify a few things.
    I’ve tested these concepts and built a working prototype and the results have all been positive. The rear triangle, in the production model has been made slightly more robust and works great.
    Regarding cost, the methods for manufacturing the components are all carried out to suit mass production. Im working on a business plan, and costs for the chair are coming in around 40 euro and desks at approx 50-60 Euro, making them mass affordable to many schools.
    The whole idea of the storage trough is to make kids stand every now and then. being locked into a chair all day is one of the most damaging things a person can do.

  5. Not sure about tilted desk; my university had one auditorium fitted with them and stuff were constantly sliding and slipping to your lap.

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