In the introduction to this Washington Post article, kids sitting still in school is mentioned and the implication is that recess will help them do that. YES, children need recess in order to be healthy, to learn, and to be happy. However, an even bigger question is, why do schools think children need to sit still to learn? Why is school set up that way? There are many schools that know better and their children are very successful–and happy. Research shows over and over again, that conversations, moving, and using our hands promote better learning. Most adults, when working or learning, move about and find it helpful to do so. We have coffee or water, talk to a colleague, learn things WITH other people, ask questions, collaborate, and then go back to our work or study. High schoolers are given more flexibility than very young children. Prisoners get to spend more time outside than most young children in schools. Lunch time is a tightly controlled dash with little opportunity for conversation and building relationships. Don’t even get me started on the terrible food children are served! Then there’s homework that cuts into their time for play after school. So we wring our hands about obesity and stress and suggest stress relieving exercises, pedal desks, and behavior charts. It is crazy and it borders on child abuse.
#recess #youngchildren #reallearning #schoollunch #sittingstill