Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Making the Best of Recess Series #1

To see all posts in this series click here.
I'm a big fan of using every teachable moment as an opportunity.  Recess is no exception.  Recess provides students with many important things.  I don't want to innundate you with all of my thoughts and so I will break up the Recess posts into a series.
            Surprise!  Recess is not a time for you to take a break.  While the kids are getting a much-needed break from the day, you have to be more on your toes than ever. 

  • Why do we have Recess?
    • There are a few great reasons why we have recess.
      • Recess gives the kids a mental break from the day.
      • Social and character development are improved.        
        • Children have the opportunity to interact with others without supervision, which is important. They need be able to find their own voice and way to communicate with their peers.
      • Develops motor skills both fine and gross.
      • Exercise.
Recess can be spread far and wide, depending on the size of your playground, and it can involve lots of different groups of kids doing risk-taking activities.  There are a few ways that you can keep recess fun and safe for your students.

  • Keep moving       
    • Walk around to each activity in progress and talk to the kids.  Engage with kids who are just walking around talking, or spend a few minutes with someone who is wandering around alone.  Stand by the sidelines of a game happening and cheer them on or make a few positive comments before you move on.  Try to make it around to everyone or every group at least once.
    • If you aren’t staying in one place and they know you will come around to them, they also know that this isn’t a time when they can get away with things. 
      • Recess is often the time when bullying happens, if you regularly make the rounds you can decrease some of that behavior.
More on this topic next week.....


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