Thursday, September 20, 2012

Recess - Won't you weigh in?

How much recess do your kids get?
How is it built into your schedule?
Do you take it away as a consequence?
What are your thoughts?
Please weigh in...

The Importance of Recess
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  1. My 4th graders have 15 minutes in the morning around 10am, and our lunch is 40 minutes long (starts at 12:10) - half of that is eating, and the other half is play time. I take away morning recess if a student doesn't do his homework - he's still outside to enjoy the outdoors, but he has to finish up his work before he can play. It's a great motivator to get them to always turn in their homework. The kids also have 30 minutes of PE in the mornings where they play organized games (9:15am).

  2. At my school, first through fifth grade gets recess 10-10:20 (it is a madhouse in a school of nearly 900) and 40 minutes of lunch (20 eating, 20 playing). I never take away more than 10 minutes of morning recess (the kids I'd be keeping in need the exercise the most, in my opinion) and never lunch (I need the break). I can't imagine teaching without those breaks. Even on my yard duty days, it's a mental break. I certainly can't imagine teaching kids who haven't had time to run around, socialize, and have some less cognitively challenging time. Although I certainly see the discipline problems!

    A Place to Thrive

  3. They NEED recess!!! I think of myself, sitting in day-long classes, workshops, in-service meetings, etc. I want to get up and move around at least every 2-3 hours. And I'm OLD! ;) The physical and mental break is needed to continue on with the whatever tasks need to be finished for the day. We're talking about KIDS who need to be active. (and I want a common lunch time with my 4th grade cohorts!)

  4. My second graders have recess three times a day for 15 min. each. If I have a child who needs to miss a recess for missing homework, behavior, or other needs, I only keep them for 10 min. at the most and then give them 5 min. of fresh air so I get a small break, too. Our intermediate grades have 15 min. after lunch & a longer recess (~25 min.) in the afternoons.
    Stories by Storie

  5. We have one recess (30 mins.) each day. We don't have the staff for more than one recess. Our teacher contract states that we work only on recess duty per week. Sometimes the recess time is our plan time. (Ha!) We send kids out with work to do, or they owe mins.-walking outside.
    My grade has the last recess 2:50 in the afternoon, which really does them no good, since we only have 30 minutes of school left before they go home. In the earlier time slots recess can be beneficial.


  6. Would it be okay if I linked up with your blog and posted that recess poster? This is a very interesting topic to me, as we cut back this year to only 1 recess (lunch) in first grade!

  7. We get 15 minutes 3 days of the week and 30 minutes 2 days of the week. It depends on whether or not they have PE that day. On Fridays, fourth grade gets extra recess if they completed their homework. We are NOT allowed to take away recess as a punishment.

    I can see the effectiveness in taking away recess, but when I student taught, my kiddos had like 45 minutes of recess and their teacher would take it away from the repeat offenders daily. The repeat offenders never had recess... and they were the kids that needed it the most!!!

    Fourth Grade Lemonade

  8. At my school we have no set time for recess. K-2 has one playground and 3-5 have another. This year 2nd grade is going put before lunch which is 30 min. We usually try to give 25 minutes or so. Kids who have behavior/homework issues do miss out part of the time. This is really our only choice as a consequence.

  9. We have "lunch/recess" daily but they only get 10 minutes. On Wednesdays we have an extra recess of 20 minutes. BUT, our kids have 3-4 days of PE for 45 minutes, so they are getting time to play. I still don't think it is nearly enough, but with everything we have to teach, there isn't enough time! With the limited recess, I never use it as a consequence.

  10. My sixth graders get a twenty minute recess in the morning. I only take time away from them if they have taken time away from me teaching them. I figured they took away time from both my teaching and their learning (through misuse of time, or excessive chit-chat) so I just make up that lost time via their recess. Remarkably, they never seem to "waste" more than a minute or two. Walking around with a stopwatch around your neck is pretty effective for me. :)


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