9 Types of School Desks: That are Actually Used Today

In the past, a hundred school desks were used in different parts of the world.

But, school desks have changed a lot in recent years.

So, what types of school desks are used today?

In this article, I’ll discuss nine types of school desks that are best for study and are still used today.

So, let’s dive in!

9 Types of School Desks

There are a variety of school desks available to buy in secondary school and high school. 

Some desks are better suited for certain age groups or subject areas than others. 

Here are nine different types of school desks to consider:

1. Traditional School Desks

An image showing Traditional School Desk
Traditional School Desk

One of the most defining features of a traditional school desk is its attached seat and slanted desktop. This type of school desk is antique and used in the past.

This design of desks dates back to when schoolchildren had to sit in rows and needed desks that would let them see the blackboard.

Materials: Wood, and metal.


  • Very durable.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Many students can sit at a time.
  • Provides much storage space for school supplies.


  • Uncomfortable to sit in for long times.
  • May be expensive.
  • Makes difficult to move around.

2. Open Front Desks

An image showing Open Front Desk
Open Front Desk

An open front desk is a type of desk that has an open front and usually no drawers. This type of school desks cost less than the other types.

The open-front school desk was introduced in the late 19th century and used till the 20th century.

Materials: Wood, metal, and plastic.


  • Very lightweight.
  • Can save space in the classroom.
  • More legroom for students.


  • Little to no storage space.
  • No attached chair.
  • Offers less privacy.

3. Lift Lid Desks

An image showing Lift Lid Desk
Lift Lid Desk

A lift lid desk or open lid desk is a type of desk that features a lid that can be lifted, making it easy to access the contents of the desk. 

Lift-lid desks are a great option for those who want to be able to access their desk storage, as well as for those who want to be able to keep their desk tidy

Materials: Metal, plastic, and wood.


  • Provides much storage space.
  • Reduces back and joint pain.
  • Sleek and modern design.


  • Expensive due to high-quality materials.
  • Provides less space for the students.

4. Collaborative Learning Desks

An image showing Collaborative Desk
Collaborative Desk

The collaborative desk is designed to promote collaborative learning in the classroom. 

The desks are arranged in groups of four to six, with each student facing another student around a round table. 

This configuration allows students to share materials and work together on projects.

Materials: Metal and plastic.


  • Encourages teamwork and social skills among students.
  • Helps to create a more positive learning environment.
  • Can help save space in the classroom.


  • Can be messy.
  • Some students may find it distracting.
  • Lacks privacy.
  • Provides less space for each student.

5. Modern School Desks

An image showing Modern School Desk
Modern School Desk

School desks have come a long way since the traditional wooden designs of the past. 

Today, there are a variety of modern school desks on the market that are designed to meet the needs of both the student and teacher.

One type of this desk is a modern school desk.

They are also smaller and more compact than traditional desks, which makes them more suitable for smaller classrooms.

Materials: Metal, plastic, and aluminum.


  • Beautiful and sleek design.
  • Lightweight.
  • Offers adjustable height.


  • More expensive than ordinary school desks.
  • Doesn’t offer any built-in storage space.
  • Can be small for older students.

6. One Arm Chair Desk

An image showing Armchair Desk
Armchair Desk

One armchair desks or tablet arm desks are types of desks that have a school chair attached to them.

These types of desks are a great way to save space and make the most of a small space.

Materials: Wood, and metal.


  • Have extra space to put arms.
  • Promotes good posture.
  • Very lightweight and easy to move around.
  • Cheaper than any other desk type.


  • Causes back pain if sit for a long time.
  • Has less space to move around while sitting.
  • Things can fall off the corners.

7. Welsh School Desk

An image showing Welsh School Desk
Welsh School Desk

The Welsh school desk is a simple, functional piece of furniture, made from wood. 

It is designed to be used by two people, with a seat and a desktop. The desktop is usually slanted, to make writing easier.

Materials: Wood and metal.


  • Provides much storage space.
  • Antique furniture but still used in some schools.
  • Very sturdy compared to other types of school desks.


  • Quite expensive.
  • The slanted surface may be uncomfortable for some students.
  • Very heavy and hard to move around.

8. Munkegaard Desk

An image showing Munkegaard Desk
Munkegaard Desk

Munkegaard is a school desk that is perfect for any classroom. It is made of high-quality materials and is very sturdy.

The desk is very easy to assemble and made from teak. It has a simple, yet elegant design.

Materials: Metal, rubber, wood, and plastic.


  • Quite elegant and modern looking.
  • Offers huge storage space for placing books and other stationery.
  • Very easy to assemble.


  • Not big enough for some students.
  • Doesn’t offer height adjustability.
  • The desk is very expensive

9. Standing Desk

An image showing Standing Desk
Standing Desk

A standing desk for school can be a great way to improve your child’s focus and concentration.

This type of desk has many benefits including burning more calories and reducing back pain.

Materials: Wood, metal, and plastic.


  • Improves focus and concentration.
  • Burns more calories.
  • Have many health benefits like a lower risk of a heart attack.
  • Can be converted into a sitting desk.


  • Can be tiring for some students.
  • Maybe disruptive to the classroom environment.
  • More expensive than ordinary desks.


How Were School Desks Invented?

School desks were invented in 1880 by John Loughlin.

Where are School Desks Manufactured?

School desks are manufactured in factories all around the world mostly in China.

What are School Desks Made of?

School desks are made of a variety of materials, including wood, metal, and plastic.


School desks are being used for about two hundred years.

There are many school desks types out there in the market, but the most famous among them are:

  1. Traditional School Desks
  2. Open Front Desks
  3. Lift Lid Desks
  4. Collaborative Learning Desks
  5. Modern School Desks
  6. One Arm Chair Desk
  7. Welsh School Desk
  8. Munkegaard Desk
  9. Standing Desk

So, what do you think, what are some other types of school desks?

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