1. Tough laminate tops are stain-resistant and a snap to clean. They're hard enough to resist dings and chips, and never splinter.
2. When comparing metal leg tables, remember that lower rated gauges are thicker. For example, 8-gauge steel is thicker than 12-gauge.
3. Look at the footprint of tables you're considering. Do the legs allow chairs to be where you'll want them? Different leg designs allow different chair configurations, and one will be best for your needs.
4. Allow 26 inches per chair for maximum comfort when measuring seating capacity. You can go as low as 20 inches in a pinch (literally). Standard folding chairs are usually 18 inches wide. Naturally, smaller student chairs take up less space so you can fit more to a table.
5. Pressed wood and particle board tables are the strongest, but they're heavy. That's good if you want them to stay put. Blow-mold plastic tables are so light you can carry one under each arm, and are still strong enough for most applications.
6. Stacking chairs are preferable for young children. Kids like to help, and should be encouraged to do so. Stacking chairs are a game in themselves, while folding chairs can pinch little fingers.
7. Horseshoe- or kidney-shaped tables create visual interest and easily allow an adult to remain the center of attention, fostering good eye-contact with everyone and keeping all children within arm's reach.
8. Don't make kid-sized kids use adult-sized tables. An adult chair hurts little legs over time, and kids will fidget to relieve the stress. If your needs vary, consider tables with adjustable-height legs.
9. Shape up. We offer tables in all shapes and sizes. Semi-circular and trapezoidal tables can be aligned into a doughnut or square. Cloverleaf tables let students face each other yet have much more usable table space than regular circular tables. Daisy or wavy shapes aren't more efficient, but sometimes it's better just to have a little fun.
10. Our toddler tables are made of durable, stain-free plastic, and the matching chairs are extra stable, yet light enough for little ones to move on their own.