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School Recess Plays an Important Role in Optimal Development of Children

Recess is not only a time for play and having fun. Recess presents important social, physical and cognitive benefits for children. Recess is the time when children learn important life skills and develop abilities to play, interact and solve problems. Recess should not be overlooked nor should it be regarded as merely a playtime by our educational system. Recess is a vital component of every successful school system. Here we present the most important benefits of recess in school.

Benefits of School Recess for Children

Recess Improves Academic Performance

Recess is a necessary break that releases children from concentrated academic subjects and the restricted classroom environment. After sitting still and quiet for a long period of time, children need the freedom to go outside, get loud, play and be physically active. There are numerous studies showing that children learn better when they are provided intermittent break times over continuous teaching and study sessions. Recess is an opportunity for children to take control of their time for a short period and go back to classroom fresh and energized.

Recess Promotes Unstructured Play

Recess provides children an opportunity for unstructured play and creative thinking. Recess is the time for children to play and do what they like outside of the typical classroom norms and restrictions. During the recess, children are able to talk, run, explore and play with friends and classmates away from restricting rules of a normal classroom session. Free and unstructured play enhances cognitive development in children. Recess gives children an opportunity to express themselves, be creative and solve problems their own ways.

Recess and Physical Development

Recent studies indicate that recess promotes physical well-being and fitness in children. Although not all children participate in vigorous physical activities during the recess, the normal movement and motor activities that take place during the recess has substantial benefits for children. Children tend to be more active during the recess than when they are sitting still inside the classroom. Recess most likely engages children in play activities that in-turn result in motor movements like running, bending, stretching and throwing. These physical activities can reduce the risk of obesity and improve fitness in children.

Recess Encourages Social Interaction

Recess is when most of peer interaction takes place among children. Most kids like the recess because they find the opportunity to play with their friends or their classmates. Recess engages children in playing games and having talks, laughs and social conversations with peers. Far more schools now restrict talking during class and lunch breaks. After sitting quietly inside the classroom, recess gives children a change in pace when they can freely converse and socialize with other students.

Recess Increases Self-esteem

All the games and physical activities that take place during the recess help to improve self-esteem among children. In most schools, recess is the only free time children find to do things their own way. Children get to know their abilities, strengths and weaknesses as they play and interact with peers. When children see themselves capable of doing something, they grow confidence and self-esteem.



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