Children love playtime; however, the school authorities might not agree with them. Therefore, schools are reducing recess time. David Elkind wrote an article, “Playtime Is Over” in The New York Times on March 26, 2010. He argues that schools are deputing recess coaches to monitor children, which is a good thing. The controlled recess is right in the opinion of the author due to bullying. The author seems to favor controlled recess instead of curtailing it for the sake of academic work. The curtailment of recess might negatively affect the academic performance of children as they feel bored. The recess curtailment is not a good option because it might lead to children’s boredom, deprive them of gaining social skills, and lead to less physical activities.
Recess provides time for the children to refresh themselves. Many children get bored due to continuous studies, and their learning abilities go down. Adequate recess time is an opportunity for learners to refresh their minds, which keeps their learning powers intact. According to research, “such breaks increase their productivity”(Ridgers et al. p. 589). They can better perform in the periods after recess, which means that break time is not a wastage, as some people argue(Ridgers et al, p. 587). Recess time is productive, being a productivity booster; therefore, it should not be curtailed.
Children learn social skills in recess. Break time provides opportunities for the children to make friends and play and interact with fellows. Many children do not have ample opportunities to socialize with fellows after school time. Therefore, recess time is a chance for children to learn interpersonal and social skills, which play an essential role in a successful life. According to experts, it promotes “social and emotional learning” (Murray, p. 185). They can better adjust to their social environment if they learn various social and emotional skills in recess. The opponents of the recess should consider the benefits of social skills. Many interpersonal skills cannot be taught in classrooms(Stewart, p. 34). Recess time is an important contributor to children’s social and emotional learning; therefore, it should not be shortened.
Another critical advantage of the recess is the provision of physical activities for children. Not all children have enough chances to go to playgrounds after school. Therefore, recess time is an opportunity for children to become physically active, which is imperative for their good health and wellbeing. Studies have proved that recess is beneficial for children by increasing their level of physical activity. They can engage in various physical activities, which include running and jumping. The opponents of recess ignore that a healthy body is necessary for a healthy mind, which might absorb new knowledge. Recess time is beneficial to children’s physical development; therefore, it should not be cut.
The counter-arguments presented by the opponents of recess are weak. The time devoted to studies through curtailment of recess might not be as productive as it should be because breaks refresh children’s minds(Burdette et al, p. 355). Experts suggest that recess should not be curtailed; however, it might be supervised when required (Elkind, para 4). Moreover, in sessions after the recess, students can quickly learn new knowledge and skills as they might concentrate better. Considering the weak counter-arguments of opponents of breaks, schools should not curtail recess.
Elkind has rightly suggested supervising the recess instead of its curtailment. Recess provides opportunities for refreshing minds and learning social skills. Children can be physically active in breaks, which improves their health. Considering the strong arguments of proponents of breaks, schools should not shorten recess.
- I would side with the experts who are not in favor of reduced recess.
- I want to write that recess provides opportunities for physical activities. Recess offers chances for learning social skills. Recess refreshes the minds of children. The opponents of recess might be wrong. Recess should not be curtailed, given its benefits.
Elkind, David. “Opinion – Playtime Is Over (Published 2010).” The New York Times, 27 Mar. 2010, www.nytimes.com/2010/03/27/opinion/27elkind.html. Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.
Murray, Robert. “The Crucial Role of Recess in School.” Pediatrics, vol. 131, no. 1, 31 Dec. 2012, pp. 183–188, 10.1542/peds.2012-2993.
Burdette, Hillary L., et al. “Parental Report of Outdoor Playtime as a Measure of Physical Activity in Preschool-Aged Children.” Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, vol. 158, no. 4, American Medical Association, 2004, pp. 353–57.
Ridgers, Nicola D., et al. “Examining Children’s Physical Activity and Play Behaviors during School Playtime over Time.” Health Education Research, vol. 26, no. 4, Oxford University Press, 2011, pp. 586–95.
Stewart, T. L. “For Kindergartners, Playtime Is over: Full-Day Schedules, Emphasis on Learning Create ‘New 1st Grade.’” Dallas Morning News, 2005, p. 6B.