Why Kids Need Their Recess Time At School

Posted on January 14, 2014

“Fitness can boost learning and memory of children and these fitness-associated performance benefits are largest in conditions in which initial learning is the most challenging,” wrote the researchers.

Ask a group of grade school students to name their favorite class and the overwhelming and immediate response is “recess!” Kids are not wired to sit still for hours focused on learning math equations or memorizing facts. They’re built to move and need the time in their day to unplug their brain and restart their legs.

However, school administrators and teachers are facing growing pressure to reduce this play time in favor of more instruction time to meet tougher academic standards. Two new research studies argue that would be counterproductive showing that exercise and aerobic fitness are key contributors to cognitive performance.

According to the Harvard University School of Public Health, 1 out of 3 U.S. children are overweight or obese, which is triple the rate of 1963. In Europe, about 25% of school-age kids were also at an above normal weight. Certainly, diet and nutrition play a role but a 2007 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation study reported that only 36% of kids get the recommended one hour of physical activity per day. Recess represented the best chance for students to fit exercise into their daily schedule, accounting for almost half of the “opportunity time” in a child’s day.

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Category(s):Child Development

Source material from Sports are 80 Percent Mental


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