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Play It Forward: State Laws Now Require Recess

Edutopia – Brooke MacKenzie

“Against a backdrop of teacher strikes aimed at systems that feel unresponsive to teachers and students, an effort to pass laws mandating recess for elementary-age children has picked up steam. Kids like Riley aren’t the only ones who think it’s a good idea: Study after study has shown that unstructured play time is crucial to development, not only benefiting physical health but also improving cognitive faculties not normally associated with play, including focus and recall.” (more)

The grassroots revolution making it normal for children to ‘play out’ again

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“In the 1970s and 80s it was normal for children to ‘play out’ on the street in British towns and cities. However nowadays young people are far more likely to spend their time indoors, inactive and isolated. As a result, children’s physical activity levels are at an all-time low, with only one in five children getting the minimum recommended 1 hour a day of moderate to vigorous physical exercise.” (more)

Playground study shows how recess can include all children

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Recess, for most children, is synonymous with freedom. A break from class that has nothing to do with learning and everything to do with play. For children with autism, the playground can be an isolating experience. The spontaneous soccer games, roving packs of friends and virtual buffet of activities can be chaotic, frustrating and confusing. Recess is not a time to join, but to retreat.” (more)

The play’s the thing for elementary ed

District Administration – Lori Koerner

“We must offer students ample time for recess and brain breaks to help them to develop social competencies and to optimize attention to learning. As a result, students will be better able to perform their academic tasks. Play is not a luxury; it is a necessity. In many districts across the United States, recess in elementary school is being questioned, reduced and even eliminated to increase instructional time.” (more)

Key Aspects of Play in Early Education

Edutopia – Amanda Armstrong

“With the publication of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ recent report The Power of Play, early childhood educators may be more eager to include play in young children’s experiences due to its cognitive and social and emotional benefits. While the report targets pediatricians, it provides research about how play benefits children’s learning, peer engagement, physical growth, and health, and offers insight into how play can be integrated into early childhood programs.” (more)

How playing on swings can help children understand physics

The Conversation – Francis Mavhunga

“What they may not realise is that they’re learning while playing. The swing allows children to physically experience a wide range of physics concepts: velocity, gravitational potential energy – the sort of energy that allows a large swinging mass to be used to break down buildings – weightlessness, period of swing and the rush of wind resistance.” (more)