Importance of Recess, the 4th R - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 24 Old 02-24-2009, 11:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I wonder if this will cause any change in the public schools?

How is recess where your kids go to school? How long? Every day? Etc.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/24/health/24well.html?em
Quote:
A study published this month in the journal Pediatrics studied the links between recess and classroom behavior among about 11,000 children age 8 and 9. Those who had more than 15 minutes of recess a day showed better behavior in class than those who had little or none. Although disadvantaged children were more likely to be denied recess, the association between better behavior and recess time held up even after researchers controlled for a number of variables, including sex, ethnicity, public or private school and class size.

I really liked this quote...

Quote:
Also, teachers often punish children by taking away recess privileges. That strikes Dr. Barros as illogical. “Recess should be part of the curriculum,” she said. “You don’t punish a kid by having them miss math class, so kids shouldn’t be punished by not getting recess.”

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#2 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 12:10 AM
 
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I've never understood the reasoning behind denying children recess when they misbehave. As this study shows, the misbehavior is telling the teachers that the kids need MORE recess.

My kids have recess and PE every day.

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#3 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 03:58 AM
 
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umsami, thank you very much for posting the link to that article!!
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#4 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 04:10 AM
 
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Out of a 6 hour kindergarten day, my DD has 2 hours & 45 minutes of recess/free play outdoors. About ten minutes of that 2.75 hours is dedicated to snacking, which they do outside. Twice a week 45 minutes of that time is a structured, outdoor PE class.

The kids also eat lunch outside (when its not raining, which it rarely does here) and that is scheduled for a half hour (in addition to the 2.75 hours outside for recess/snack listed above).
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#5 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 08:38 AM
 
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Public school: 2 recess periods of about 25 minutes each. Plus gym twice a week.
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#6 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 10:52 AM
 
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Wow, our kids don't get much. My kindergartener is only half day (3 hours and they don't have recess at all most days). My fifth grader gets 20 minutes most days, though I think technically on PE days (three times a week, about 30-45 minutes, I think) they can PE counts in place of recess. My seventh grader doesn't see the light of day once she's in school until the final bell rings.

~Tammy
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#7 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 01:39 PM
 
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public school here

before school they are outside, anywhere from 55-5minutes depending when the child gets to school.

10:15-10:30 they're outside

12:10/15-12:45 they're outside

2-2:15 they're outside

The exception to this is on cold days or raining days when they can't be outside. We've had more than usual this year & the kids are pent up from it. Some days we get them out for 10 minutes at noon. Yesterday(and again today) they were inside the entire time.

In the winter once a week each class is in the gym instead of outside at noon for noon games.

Since there are 240-250 kids and they are all dismissed at the same time they can't put them all in the gym at once on cold/rainy days.

The school is on a 6 day system. 4 of those days they have gym.

Our province has In Motion schools, these are schools that have at least 30 min of physical activity each school day. Our school is one of them. Even on the cold days the teachers will get the kid moving some.
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#8 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 06:56 PM
 
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My 5th grader has a 30 min. recess each day, which is right after a 30 min. lunch. So it is a solid hour of time spent chatting with friends and not doing school work. They also have 2 PE classes per week (60 min each), and 2 music and art classes (I'm not sure how long those are). They also have a 60 min. computer class each week which some weeks is really fun and playful, and sometimes not. When including things like library time, reading buddies, DARE, parties, etc., my DD spends nearly half the time she is at school doing something other than school work.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#9 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 08:49 PM
 
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My Kindergartener (full-day) gets three recess per day and my 2nd grader gets two. I'm honestly not sure the length I really should find that out!

Oh, they also get a short recess in the morning before school starts. This one I know is between 10-15 minutes -- depending on what time the bus arrives-- it drops them off on the main playground.

ETA: public school here.

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#10 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 09:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annethcz View Post
My kids have recess and PE every day.
My kids attended elementary schools in both Oregon and Georgia ..... both schools had both structured PE and recess. Recess generally being 30 minutes free play after lunch.
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#11 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 09:06 PM
 
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Public schools here have 20min a day of recess K-5.

No recess after 5th grade.

-Angela
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#12 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 09:13 PM
 
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Dd is in public school, and the recess policy is poor imo. They get 30 minutes of outdoor recess in the afternoon (separate from their 30 min lunch...so essentially two 30 minute breaks), but they get no recess on the one day they have PE. I'd definitely prefer that they have recess every day! But it doesn't affect dd in a very negative way, due to her personality, so I haven't made an issue of it.
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#13 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 09:33 PM
 
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How do you get your children to actually enjoy recess?
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#14 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 10:26 PM
 
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What doesn't your dc enjoy, Viola?
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#15 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 10:36 PM
 
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I hated recess as a first grader (in public school). What's there to like about a bleak concrete and asphalt yard with no shade, teasing and bullying kids, nothing to do but "kick the ball"? I would have loved being outside in a more natural environment, but I guess trees and bushes and grass are hard to maintain.

Luckily we moved, and I got to go to the alternative school where kids just did whatever they wanted all day. So I could just sit and read all day if I liked.
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#16 of 24 Old 02-25-2009, 11:12 PM
 
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What's there to like about a bleak concrete and asphalt yard with no shade, teasing and bullying kids, nothing to do but "kick the ball"?
that would suck.

Here the kids have approx 5 acres of grass, soccer nets, 2 baseball diamonds, 2 basketball courts that turn into hockey in the winter, 2 seperate playgrounds, at 1 time it was a little kids & a big kids playground but they couldn't keep them apart so it no longer is that way. They use the wall of the gym to play wallball(which I"ve never figured out what the rules of that is other than throw the ball & try to get to the wall before someone else catches it). There is a cement pad with something you throw the ball into & it comes out 1 of 4 holes, they use that to play 4 squares.

In the winter the city puts a skating rink in, they put "hills" in too but right now they're too slippery for kids to play on, grades 4-6 have certain days they can go cross country skiing in the schoolground.

Due to the school being higher than the ground, in the spring it floods & it's too wet for the kids to be on so they're in the parking lot(blocked off from traffic of course). It's harder to manage 250 kids in the parking lot(that's roughly .5 acre) than on the main playground. They have the soccer balls out and skipping ropes. Alot of kids spend that time hunting ladybugs.
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#17 of 24 Old 02-26-2009, 04:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
What doesn't your dc enjoy, Viola?
She says it's boring. She's in 4th grade now, and has 2 recesses, usually, sometimes three. It doesn't sound like they do a whole lot. Last year she could still play on the swings and play structure, but I guess 4th, 5th and 6th graders don't get to do that. They put balls out, but that seems to be about it, which is fine, I get it's kind of non-directed play time. She hangs out with friends, but it doesn't seem like they actually do anything particularly active, and there can be some negative interactions with the other kids. I remember playing playground games that were fun, but then I also remember hating some aspects of recess.
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#18 of 24 Old 02-26-2009, 01:21 PM
 
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Last year she could still play on the swings and play structure, but I guess 4th, 5th and 6th graders don't get to do that.
That's odd, while 5th & 6th graders don't go on the swings here much(it's not cool,lol) they certainly aren't banned from them.

the older kids tend to mingle in groups, especially grade 5 & 6, not 4th so much they still play.

4th graders here play wall ball, 4 squares(until they're banned for arguing), hockey, soccer, baseball, use the swings & sometimes the play equipment/gliders, skip, hopscotch, skate, go on the snow hills when allowed, ski, play tag, pretend they're horses & use the gravel in the baseball field to make pens.

I'd go in & talk to the admin about what they can do to encourage the kids & the older kids to get involved in more activities at recess.

Here we have 4 tire swings, 4 lower swings & 4(maybe 6) higher swing. It's enough for 240ish kids.

At her grade level everything starts to become boring so there may be things for them to do but it's seen as not cool, too babyish, or just because they don't want to do it.
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#19 of 24 Old 02-26-2009, 07:22 PM
 
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Our "playground" was an asphalt pad, surrounded by chainlink fence, when I was in 4th grade. We had fun! That is where I learned to play 4 square, jumprope (single and double), play jacks, hand clapping games, etc. We also played a lot with the shoelaces that make "cat's cradle" and "Jacob's ladder"....remember those? Oh, and taught each other to make friendship bracelets....and I'm sure I'm forgetting a lot else. Maybe you could get a book or tape that teaches some of the old-fashioned jumping and clapping rhymes to inspire her? You can practice them with her!
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#20 of 24 Old 02-26-2009, 11:05 PM
 
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Thanks, OP, for posting the link, and starting this thread!

Our dc attend a private,small school,and walk to school.

K(full day)-5th gets 2 a day-unless the weather is nice-then they get an extra one.

6th- get 2 a day.Period.

Gym class once a week.

At recess, they have a nice big play structure, balls,basketball hoops, jump ropes, chaulk,and trees. Depending on the teacher supervising, sometimes they'll play a game of baseball.

Even if kids stand around, I think it's good for them to be outside, "airing out"and soaking up some Vitamin D...an unstructured break in the middle of a very structured day.
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#21 of 24 Old 02-27-2009, 12:08 AM
 
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My ds is in public school in first grade. He gets two regular recesses and a lunch recess. I'm pretty sure they are 20 minutes. Funny enough he goes to one of the highest performing schools in our city. On top of that fridays are mostly a fun day. They do music, art, PE, and in the afternoon are given a choice between certain things as long as their homework has been completed and they have had no behavioral problems. One of the choices is to play outside.

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#22 of 24 Old 02-27-2009, 11:10 AM
 
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My kids also hate recess. They normally have 25 minutes of recess a day, but if they owe work they get kept in. My kids have confessed that they sometimes deliberately don't hand stuff in because they don't want to go out to recess.

It's not a matter of bullying or anything like that. They just find recess incredibly boring. There's a play structure, swings, etc., but the older child (11) think that's for little kids. The younger says she's tired of doing it every day. Neither one is big on jump roping. Both are very fit, athletic kids.

They don't let the kids play tag, kickball, etc. because they are afraid they will get hurt. I think that's part of why they are so jaded about recess. Honestly, if they both never had recess again, they'd be happier. I'm not advocating that, but it's the way they feel.
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#23 of 24 Old 02-27-2009, 11:52 AM
 
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My kids also hate recess. They normally have 25 minutes of recess a day, but if they owe work they get kept in. My kids have confessed that they sometimes deliberately don't hand stuff in because they don't want to go out to recess.
At my DDs school, they can opt for study hall rather than recess.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#24 of 24 Old 02-28-2009, 11:34 PM
 
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My K-8 school has recess before school starts and then a 60 minute lunch/recess. We have a play structure, swings, basketball hoops, foursquare, tetherball, a play house, a big field with soccer nets and a baseball diamond, and this time of year we also have sledding, snowshoeing, and huge snow piles to climb on and build with. And some kids STILL complain that they don't have anything fun to do. On the infrequent days that it is decided to stay in, kids can play in the gym or play board games in the library. Middle school kids can opt to stay in the classroom and do schoolwork if they want, but we don't force anyone to.

As a teacher, even though I know perfectly well that recess is as important as academics, I have had to keep kids in to finish work or as punishment. I hate doing it, but when the reality is that the kids and I are held accountable for grades and academic achievement, sometimes you can't figure out any other time to get things done. Staying after school is not an option for a lot of kids. And as far as punishment goes, that is a last resort, but I have found myself saying things like "since your behavior has taken away 5 minutes of your learning time, you can use 5 minutes of your play time to balance it out."

I loved the NYT article. I hope lots of teachers and school administrators read it and take it to heart.
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