Rows or Clusters? Desk arrangements make such a difference in how the classroom operates. Personally, I dislike the individual arrangements. I would much rather prefer clusters that allow collaboration to occur more often.
This is my FAVORITE way to arrange my desks! I just put my chair in the L of each group for an instant small group, push the four middle ones out for an quick square/round shape...two desks from each group get folded in and I have instant group. SO VERSATILE!!!
If I had seen this when I was a new teacher, it would have made a HUGE difference in the way my classroom functioned. It would eliminate so much student off-task time getting a new pencil, getting notebooks, markers, etc. Store manipulatives in the drawers. You could even put a little trash container on top. Brilliant idea. It doesn't even take up a lot of floor space.