Category Archives: Education

Best of Show: LearnFit Adjustable Standing Desk


Great news! Ergotron’s second-generation LearnFit™ Adjustable Standing Desk for students earned a coveted Best of Show 2015 by Tech & Learning at ISTE!

When asked how the desk was received at the event, Bob Hill, Ergotron’s Education Industry Manager replied, “How many times have we heard a teacher ask a kid to stay seated in the classroom? Teachers get it.” What they “get” are children’s impulses to move. And how that movement is linked to brain development and ultimately performance. Read the news >

ISTE 2015 Recap: What we learned in Philly


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To those educators who were at ISTE in spirit, but not in body, we salute you!  Because we love to share what we learn, here’s a recap of our inspiring expo experience. We counted: 21,000 registered attendees, 76 countries represented, 1,000 sessions, 550 exhibitors, and 149,000+ tweets with #ISTE2015 during the four-day event!

Anthro and Ergotron joined forces to show attendees their winning combination of charging carts, cabinets, and standing desks. We enjoyed seeing everyone at our booth and had great conversations about ed tech and flow in the classroom. We made many new friends and left with happy memories — and hope you did, too.

At the gigantic Pennsylvania Convention Center, visitors were wowed by our new Ergotron LearnFit standing desk. “Teachers liked the idea of supporting kids who need to stand or move,” said Julia Griffiths, product manager at Anthro, “so their favorite feature was height adjustment. As they got into the product, they started to really like the mobility and small size because they could easily reconfigure their classrooms.” Judges of Tech & Learning magazine’s prestigious Best of Show awards program were equally enthusiastic and selected the LearnFit as a 2015 great product.

A close second in popularity was the Ergotron ZIP and Anthro YES Chromebook charging carts. They each offer unique features, and depending on the application, either would be a welcome addition to most classrooms, media rooms, or libraries. The excitement in our booth was also boosted by giveaways and interactive demonstrations.

ISTE Booth

As an ISTE participant-at-large, stay in the know by following these hashtags: #ISTE2015, #ISTEStandards, #CCSS, and #ProjectReimaginED, and of course, #NotAtISTE15 and our own contribution, #FindYourTribe.

Search for keywords used by presenters addressing today’s hottest ed tech topics. Some ideas: Instructional design (356 sessions); Coding (166 sessions); PD & Coaching (142 sessions); Innovative learning environments (107 sessions); Communication and collaboration tools (76 sessions).

Here are three other recaps or reports-from-the-field, on a variety of social media channels:

Maureen Yoder, faculty member at Lesley University, offers a video tour of the Expo Hall (the size of five football fields!) and shares some of her favorite gadgets.

Want updates about new product releases from the big corporate players, such as Google and McGraw-Hill? EdSurge, an independent ed tech community, has an ISTE 2015 Roundup of the latest news.

Looking for inspiration and words of wisdom? Imagine Easy curates the top 14 “nuggets” from Day 1: slideshare and Day 2: slideshare.

Is there anything you missed at ISTE 2015 that can’t be replicated virtually? Yes, walking! The average attendee covered 24 miles over four days. That’s enough exercise to burn about 2,400 calories, or nearly four Philly cheesesteak sandwiches.

We’re excited for what’s next in ed tech. Educators, continue using technology to invent the future, and we promise to continue to support your efforts.

See you at ISTE 2016 in Denver!


See What’s New in Tech at ISTE15

Our exciting new technologies are unleashing their power in ed tech!

Anthro and Ergotron are making their presence known at ISTE 2015 with all new charging and standing desk furniture.

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IT folks and other techies especially love gadgets, gizmos, and the latest wiz-bang gear. If you identify as an #ISTEtechie (take our quiz!) you’re sure to enjoy making the rounds across 1 million square feet of expo space.

Visit our ISTE booth #1921 at the ISTE conference in Philly, June 28th to July 1st, and discover a collection of leading-edge products handpicked for you, your educational staff, and your entire school.

As you may know, Ergotron and Anthro recently merged to bring you a winning combination of charging carts, cabinets, and standing desks. Whether charging up students or digital devices, we have you covered!

New! Anthro YES Charging Cabinet

Anthro says YES to all of your devices with two space-saving charging cabinets — the YES Cabinet for Mini-Laptops and the YES Cabinet for Tablets. Both offer compact and secure wall or surface charging, saving valuable floor space in cramped classrooms and offices.

Anthro’s congestion-busting cabinets units are fully adjustable to fit devices, with or without cases, and can be reconfigured when devices change or new technology is adopted.

Tracey, an educator in Chapel Hill, NC, gives 5 stars to Anthro’s popular YES charging family:
“We recently purchased a third YES cart for our newest Chromebook lab. We have always been impressed with the quality and ease of use of the Anthro carts but this past winter one of the carts was really put to the test. We had a break in over the winter holidays but our Chromebooks were safe! The top of the cart had been pummeled by a hammer. The hammer marks were very clear but the cart remained locked and the thieves left the cart with the Chromebooks inside! We will continue to protect our devices with Anthro carts!”

New! Ergotron LearnFit Adjustable Standing Desk

Transform static classrooms into active learning environments! The LearnFit Adjustable Standing Desk can be rolled around for small group breakouts and quickly returned to the full classroom configuration. They also give students age nine through adult the ability to easily self-adjust the desk up to 20” (50 cm) to their preferred height.

Standing more throughout the day increases blood circulation, burns more calories, and helps maintain muscle tone and insulin effectiveness.

Jason Rhodes, at Dr. Kirk Lewis Career and Technical High School in the Houston-area says:
“Since the introduction of the LearnFit standing desks student engagement has gone up markedly…Oftentimes the afternoon, post-lunch hours pose the greatest challenge for teachers as student attention starts to fade. The afternoon performance with the LearnFit desks is night and day. I’ve had no sleeping issues recorded this year, and any time I sense a potential issue I have the students change their positions, which does a great job of recapturing their attention and focus.”

Drop by our booth #1921 and take one of our new carts or desks for a test-drive!

Get Your Swag on at ISTE15!

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Unleash your inner swagger! Connect, collaborate, and explore in Philly at ISTE 2015, the world’s largest ed tech expo. Swing by and visit Anthro and Ergotron together at ISTE booth #1921. Say “hello,” check out our expanded portfolio of products, and enter one of our contests. You’ll walk away a winner!

In It To Win It! 

We’ve got multiple ways for you to collect cool swag:

1. Enter our 3@3 Daily Giveaway Raffle. Get your badge scanned and get a red ticket. Put one side of the ticket in the box near the product of your choice, keep the other part. Drop by our booth at 3pm and see if your ticket is drawn and your name is announced as one of our three daily winners! (Must be present to win.)

Prizes: Tablet Management Station 16; LearnFit; YES Charging Cabinet for Tablets or Mini-Laptops — subject to change.

2. Crack the code in our Winning Combination Contest. Grab a “coded” candy bar (Hershey’s Cookies & Creme or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup) from within a YES Charging Cart – if the combination code unlocks the padlock on the back of the Cart, you’re a winner!

Prizes: Select from either a $50 Michael’s or Amazon gift card. Six total winners possible.

Remember, you can’t win if you don’t enter! See you soon.

[Video] Get students standing? It’s time to LearnFit

Students and teachers around the country are discovering the ups and downs of the sit-stand classroom. They are earning an A+ from us for inherently understanding the benefits of moving more during the day with our LearnFit Desk. Watch on.

Quiz: Find Your Tribe at ISTE15!

Take the quiz and discover your ed tech tribe of like-minded folks! Most educators share a love of learning and a commitment to kids, of course, but vary in terms of personal style and professional interests. After glancing at these four types, scroll to the end of this page to identify your tribe and see how your answer compares to the total results. Easy, right?

Type 1: The First-Time Attendee


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Will you make rookie mistakes – getting overwhelmed by action-packed days or being too shy to approach others, say? Sure! But you’ll also learn from them and grow into a better educator.

Type 2: The Gadget and Gizmo Lover


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Your love gadgets, gizmos, and the latest wiz bang technology means you’re sure to enjoy prowling through one million square feet of expo space crammed with tech exhibits and demonstrations.

Type 3: The Swag Collector


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Who doesn’t love a deal, and what’s better than FREE? We have your number – so swing by our Anthro and Ergotron Booth #1921 and unleash your inner swagger! Enter one of our many raffles and contests for some sweet giveaways.

Type 4: The Participant-at-Large


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Maybe you couldn’t make it to Philly this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t participate! Access low-cost, live streaming content at ISTE Live or follow these hashtags: #ISTE2015, #ISTEStandards, #CCSS, and #ProjectReimaginED, and of course, #NotAtISTE15 and #FindYourTribe.


ISTE15 for Newbies: What to expect in Philly

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Less than two weeks from today marks the start of the 2015 ISTE Conference & Exhibition in Philadelphia, Penn. From June 28 to July 1, the annual event will bring together more than 15,000 educators from around the globe – all ready to discover new ways to connect and engage with students. Here are a few things you should know before you land in Philly:

Don’t bring a lot of stuff. It sounds commonsensical, but it’s easy to forget and overpack. You won’t want to lug heavy luggage, or a briefcase, bag, or backpack while trying to maneuver in crowded areas at the conference. (Newbie mistake: grabbing too much swag and then having to cart it around all day!) Stick with the essentials and lean on your mobile device and portable power charger.

Fingers crossed, the weather will be sunny! The historic average high is 86 degrees with cloudiness and thunderstorms a possibility. Be sure to pack a light rain jacket, comfy shoes and a swimsuit. (Your hotel will have a pool, and taking a dip or soak in a whirlpool will be exactly what you need after a long day.) Also bring a refillable water bottle and your favorite granola bars so you can stay hydrated and fueled up during your sessions.

Wear a pedometer and track your steps, mileage, and calories burned. The conference takes place in the heart of downtown, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, an architectural gem which spans a whopping 1 million square feet. A Philly cheesesteak packs 1,200 calories a pop, but you’d be surprised how quickly you can burn that off just cruising around. There are more than 900 sessions and over 500 exhibitors, so plan out where you want to go (and where it is) beforehand. If you’re attending with several colleagues, agree on a meeting point in case anyone gets lost, because there might be spotty cell service.

Get out and explore the city! Philadelphia is one of our great American cities, with some of the most genuine people you could hope to meet. Don’t miss the historic landmarks nearby the convention center at Independence National Historical Park, including the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, and National Constitution Center. Want more ideas for sightseeing? Visit Philadelphia has you covered with a jam-packed travel website. Make every hour happy hour! You’ll find many must-try dishes and drinks within walking distance of the center. Check out this map.

Participate in the conversation surrounding ISTE via social media. Tweet your thoughts about keynotes and program highlights with #ISTE2015, and follow @isteconnects for tradeshow updates and happenings. But also make plans to meet people face to face and engage in real world, real time conversations. Find your tribe of like-minded colleagues at birds-of-a-feather, 1-in-3, or ISTE Ignite sessions. Or better yet, register now for social events, such as ISTEball – Brewers at Phillies Game or Edtech Karaoke! Or simply chat up folks as you stand in those long, long Starbucks lines.

Last but not least: this year at ISTE, you won’t want to miss seeing how two trusted brands are better together. With Ergotron’s acquisition of Anthro in January 2015, you can now get just the right charging solution or standing desk for your classroom, media center, or office. Visit Ergotron and Anthro at booth #1921!

We hope to see you soon.


Obama Administration Requests $1 Billion in Education Funding


Recently, District Administration and other news outlets like it, reported the Obama administration’s request for $1 billion in funding for American Indian education, including millions for schools needing new construction or significant repair.

Native American children are considered “at risk” students, not only for lower high school graduation rates, but also for the occurrence of Type II diabetes and obesity, which has reached epidemic proportions as compared to Non-native populations.

Recognizing that Ergotron’s product base gives educators the ability to activate classrooms where children spend much of their sedentary time, we joined forces with the Mayo Clinic at one Minnesota school, Nay Ah Shing Elementary, on the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Reservation. The Mayo Clinic was investigating the impact of incorporating more movement (Prevention, 2010) in the classroom on student health, behavior and performance and Ergotron was able to provide sit-stand workstations as intervention.

Physical activity in US schools averages less than 45 minutes per day although the government recommendation is 60 minutes. In the effort to improve academic achievement many schools have sacrificed physical education classes and recess. At the same time, statistics predict that obese adolescents stand a significant chance of becoming obese adults. The health risks associated with a growing population of overweight and obese citizens include cancer, diabetes, heart disease, dementia and early death¹.

Building on observations made during the pilot project at Nay Ah Shing, researchers are now studying students using Ergotron LearnFit™ Adjustable Standing Desks at Belle Terre Elementary in Palm Coast, Florida and Fountain Hills Unified School District in Phoenix, Arizona. The theory is that once kids get moving, standing, and walking around in the classroom during their learning time not only will it impact their health and risk for disease in the future but also it will increase their learning, processing and academic test scores. As at Nay Ah Shing, Belle Terre and Fountain Hills, students are tracking student activity and educators have been instructed how to teach in an active mode.

The US government encourages manufacturers like Ergotron to collaborate with scientists and research institutions on projects like Nay Ah Shing with the goal of improving the course of the lives of children. Students that may have otherwise left school will have more incentive to stay the course and, ultimately, become high performing adults. In addition, any funding that helps with the adoption of more active learning environments can tackle the issue of overweight students and play a part in preventing the onset of related (and extremely costly) diseases².

We will be blogging more about this important topic in the months ahead.

1. Jeffrey Levi, Chrissie Juliano, & Laura M. Segal, 2006
2. G. F. Dunton1, 2009


[Video] Always Active, Always Engaged – Spotlight on Education

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Montera Middle School in Oakland, California, is joining Belle Terre Elementary (Florida), and Deer Creek Middle School (Colorado), in a unique approach to learning. They’ve furnished a complete classroom with Ergotron’s LearnFit Adjustable Standing Desks. Hear about the experience from teachers and students alike. Unscripted, direct and honest reactions…just the way you want them.

Nortek Acquires Anthro Corporation, Technology Furniture®

Nortek, Inc. (NASDAQ: NTK) today announced the acquisition of Anthro Corporation, the Oregon-based designer and manufacturer of technology furniture to join Nortek’s Ergotron and OmniMount brands (see the release).anthro-logo-notag_Red_2

“We share similar cultures and our employees put customers first in everything they do,” said Pete Segar, Ergotron President and CEO. “This shared passion and energy will drive new innovations that not only support our mission of delivering the kinds of solutions that promote healthier and more productive environments, but also strategically prepare us for future trends.”

By uniting the strengths and resources of Ergotron and Anthro, our combined organization is positioned to better serve the growing global demand for high-quality and affordable digital life and workstyle products. We are excited to welcome Anthro employees aboard today!