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When it comes to school recess, a quality playground experience matters

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Recess periods can offer physical, cognitive, social and emotional benefits to elementary school children, but those benefits are tied closely to the quality of the playground experience. Playground safety, access to play equipment, peer conflict resolution and quality engagement between adults and students are among the factors that contribute to a quality recess experience, new research from Oregon State University shows.” (more)

The Benefits Of Recess Are Proven By Science — So Why Are Teachers Taking It Away?

The Huffington Post – Annamarya Scaccia

“When it comes to classroom discipline, each school has its own set of rules—but a universally popular response to misbehavior is to prohibit kids from participating in recess. The problem is that a large body of research has shown recess benefits kids’ mental and physical health. So when that time to play and enjoy fresh air is stripped away as a disciplinary tactic, the consequences may be worse than intended.” (more)

How Kids Learn Better By Taking Frequent Breaks Throughout The Day

KQED News Mind/Shift – Timothy D. Walker

“Although I favor the Finnish model, I realize that unleashing fifth graders on the playground every hour would be a huge shift for most schools. According to Pellegrini, breaks don’t have to be held outdoors to be beneficial. In one of his experiments at a public elementary school, the children had their recess times inside the school, and the results matched those of other experiments where they took their breaks outside: after their breaks, the students were more focused in class (Pellegrini, 2005).”(more)

Lawmaker: Make recess mandatory for schools

WSB TV – Richard Elliot

“A state lawmaker wants to make recess mandatory for school children from kindergarten to 5th grade. State Rep. Demetrius Douglas, a Stockbridge Democrat, introduced a bill that would require school districts to allow children recess time. The bill would also prevent schools from keeping students out of recess as a punishment.”(more)

Designing School Recess To Helps Kids Learn, Play And Eat Healthy Foods

KQED News Mind/Shift – Sophia Boyd

“What’s the best time for students to have recess? Before lunch, or after? What happens if it rains? If students are misbehaving, is it a good idea to punish them by making them sit out recess? Those are just a few of the issues in new guidelines designed to help schools have good recess. The recommendations come from a group called SHAPE (Society of Health and Physical Educators) America and from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Recess might seem simple — just open the doors and let the kids run free. But only eight states have policies that require it, according to last year’s Shape of the Nation report. And when researchers started looking, they found very little consistency or guidances about what makes recess effective.”(more)

Health Experts Release New Guidances for Improving Recess in U.S. Schools

Education World – Nicole Gorman

“Health experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE America) have partnered to release a series of guidances intended to help both elementary and secondary school leaders improve recess for the benefit of U.S. students. The first guidance, Strategies for Recess in Schools, provides 19 evidence-based recommendations designed for leaders interested in “making leadership decisions, communicating behavioral and safety expectations, creating a supportive environment, engaging the school community and gathering information,” said the American Academy of Pediatrics.”(more)