PLANO, TX – (June 1, 2017) – Flexible classrooms require more options for flexible active seating. Smith System is answering the call by introducing oodle, a contemporary, new K12 stool line that meets a range of alternative seating needs. Foremost, oodle is the education industry’s first stackable stool that offers two-in-one seating:  stationary or 10-degrees of multidirectional “wiggle.”

“Unlike other products on the market, oodle is a universal solution for K12 learning environments. It’s a simple, comfortable way to support student choice and reduce the amount of improvised seating,” said Michael Risdall, Smith System director of marketing. See a video of how oodle works at

Oodle Concept

The basic oodle features three disc-shaped components, each 17 inches in diameter and 6.5 inches high. Teachers can assist students in using the sections individually or in stacking them higher. Additionally, by simply flipping a separate, floor-facing disc insert 180 degrees, students can sit still (the insert’s flat side) or enjoy 10 degrees of multi-directional rocking motion (the insert’s convex side). Research shows that active seating – seating that gently moves with the student – improves focus by giving them a healthy way to channel excess energy.

For safety, a sturdy rotation lock keeps the proprietary stack-and-lock system securely fastened. Oddle also has a built-in “stop” to prevent a seated student from rocking too far. (NOTE:  Smith System recommends stacking no more than four sections for seating. Higher stacking is useful when storing oodle.)

“Oodle provides enough movement to realize the benefits of active seating, without causing a sense of imbalance or tipping. It’s fun without being distracting,” Risdall added.

Ideation and Creators

After exploring stool concepts internally, Smith System collaborated with award-winning industrial design experts Joe Ricchio of Ricchio Design and Charlie Patterson of Patterson Design. They agree the stool’s stackability also benefits educators, who can assist students to adjust stool height to students’ stature, the classroom or lesson configuration, or other individual needs.

“Previously, school furniture designed to allow student movement either didn’t have a strictly stationary option, or it was essentially adult-sized exercise equipment or office furniture modified to fit a K12 student,” Joe Ricchio explained. “Oodle is right-sized, meant for today’s flexible classroom, and provides a universal option for customized seating.”

Mix and Match Choices

Oodle’s bold colors and clean shapes bring a sophisticated, graphic palette to the classroom. Individual stool sections come in five mix-or-match colors:  charcoal, platinum, apple, orange and cerulean. Pieces are molded of high-density polypropylene and manufactured in the United States.

About Smith System

Founded in 1905, Smith System ( has helped American education evolve by being ready with the right furniture at the right time. An industry leader in school furniture innovation, Smith System is committed to developing products that support optimum learning environments – addressing the needs of students and educators, the demands of the curriculum, and the realities of space, maintenance and budget.

About Joe Ricchio and Charlie Patterson

Joe Ricchio is founder of Ricchio Design, a consultancy focused on product, furniture and graphic design. He has designed seating, accessories and more, with widespread recognition, including IBD, IDSA and Best of NeoCon awards. Charlie Patterson is the founder of Patterson Design. He has been an award-winning industrial designer for more than four decades.

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