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Wednesday, November 19, 2019

If you're looking to support and engage the whole child all year round, do not forget about the importance of recess! We all need a break.

WU Template - Quotes Section 10-2019

"Play builds the kind of free-and-easy, try-it-out, do-it-yourself character that our future needs."

-James L. Hymes, Jr.

We love recess!

Recess time for students has been cut back significantly in the past couple of decades. Students are spending less time outside doing the important work of socializing with peers and getting much-needed exercise. 

Some teachers consider recess a reward for positive behavior and denying recess to students as a consequence of negative behavior. But is taking away recess really a good thing for kids? We think not, and today we explain the many benefits that outweigh using recess as a punishment for kids who don't turn their homework in or are fidgety in class. Take a look at some of the pros of giving your students this much-needed brain break at least once per day. 
  • Recess is an opportunity for students to develop social-emotional skills, such as negotiation, sharing, and turn-taking. Recess allows students to spend non-academic time with peers, which is important for child development.
  • Exercise is important. Students spend around 6 hours per day in school, and much of that time is sitting at their work stations. Allowing time to stretch their legs and run around is important for health and well-being. 
  • Brains need breaks. In the 21st century classroom, demands are very high for children. Kids need breaks, in fact, we all need breaks, in order to keep our minds fresh so that we can learn and develop new skills. Recess is a perfect opportunity for kids to take a brain break from the rigor of their core subjects. 
  • Recess can actually cut down on fidgety behaviors. When students are struggling to stay in their seats and focus on work, it is a good idea to take a break and either stretch, do some jumping jacks or take a short walk. Consider recess as a way to get students up and moving in order to be more attentive and focused later in the day. 
Recess is fun for kids, and sometimes it might seem like a good idea to dangle this carrot as a way to get them to work hard, behave and hand their homework in on time. However, we encourage you to consider recess as an integral part of the learning day for students, a break that will help them be better able to develop the skills you have prioritized for this school year. 
WU Template - Education News Section 10-2019

Wide World of Education

And now, a word from the doctor
The American Academy of Pediatrics agrees that recess is an important aspect of a child's day in order to positively influence the development of the whole child. Check out this article: The Crucial Role of Recess in School, by the Council on School Health. It will give you a summary of what the research says about the social-emotional, cognitive and physical benefits of recess, in addition to some safety guidelines for recess. This will take a solid 15 minutes to read, but it is worth the time and perhaps even worth sharing with colleagues on your faculty bulletin board.

Like what you're reading?

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