Kids around the country get a whole 15 minutes to rest right after lunch. Most parents and kids would agree that this is barely enough time to even get out the door and back. Parents have been increasingly asking themselves if their kids are getting enough time off, and it turns out they aren’t.
Both the American Association for the Child’s Right to Play and the National Association for Sport and Physical Association agree that more should be done to promote physical activities at school. Even the Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics agree to this too.
There are a ton of noticeable benefits of offering kids in school a longer recess. They get a chance to play, which is the only form of exercise for a lot of kids at this age. They also get to develop relationships. The social aspect of getting to play with kids your age is very beneficial and helps a child develop emotionally over the long-term.
Most parents have adequate breaks in their own workday. Working at a desk in an office is comparable to sitting in a classroom for long hours. But adults are more adapted to this environment than kids. Despite this, breaks at work are often longer than those offered at school.
We must turn to the scientific research in this field to figure out if there is an ideal amount of time kids must get to rest in between classes. It turns out there isn’t, but most experts agree that at least some time is necessary to keep kids engaged at elementary school.
Experiments have shown that kids that get longer recesses and enough time to play outside, often get more benefits than just the physical exercise. They are less likely to fidget in the class and generally behave much better after some time in the sun. Most kids observed in studies showed signs of losing focus in class if their recess was somehow postponed or cancelled.
Some of the largest studies have said that a minimum of 15 minutes is surely needed to help kids recharge their enthusiasm and get back to work in the classroom. Typically kids are likely to have attention spans of 30 minutes or less, which means the rest of the day needs to be structured around this too.
Most kids tend to chose running around and playing games during recess and a lot of them simply rest, both of which are equally beneficial, it seems. The sense of freedom, getting to choose what to do instead of being told by teachers what must be done, is surprisingly beneficial too.