This is an important issue the 4th "R" of Education (Recess) is just as important and conducive to learning as the other 3 (Reading, wRiting & aRithmetic). Kids need a break during the day so that their brains can absorb and comprehend what was taught in the classroom. - MM
Petitioning Middletown Board of Education Members, Superintendent William George III,
We the members of the Middletown school community request that you reconsider the reduction of recess and lunch time periods in your effort to increase academic study within the class day.
The American Academy of pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that elementary students be provided with scheduled periods of unstructured physical activity and play every day and that this time not be reduced in effort to increase academic study (Murray & Ramstetter, 2013).
Numerous studies purport this claim indicating benefit of recess to support and enhance the social, physical, and emotional development of children. Reducing the time allotted for unstructured play either in lieu of increased academics or as punitive measures for misbehavior robs our children not only of these benefits but also of the opportunities for independent growth and decision-making.
We ask that you consider the holistic needs of our children and adhere to the supported research outlined, as well as parental input and reinstate the prior time frame and unstructured nature of recess. Thank you for your consideration.
Murray, R. & Ramstetter, C. (2013). From the American Academy of Pediatrics
Policy Statement: The Crucial Role of Recess in School. Pediatrics, 131 (1). p. 183 -188
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1997). Guidelines for school and community programs to promote lifelong physical activity among young people. MMWR Recomm Rep. 46(RR-6):1–36
National Association of Early Childhood Specialists in State Departments of Education. (2011). Recess and the Importance of Play: A Position Statement on Young Children and Recess. Washington, DC: National Association of Early Childhood Specialists in State Departments of Education; 2002. Retrieved from: www.naecs-sde.org/recessplay.pdf.
Sibley B, & Etnier J. (2003). The relationship between physical activity and cognition in children: a meta-analysis. Pediatr Exerc Sci.15. p. 243–256
Stellino M.B., & Sinclair C.D. (2008). Intrinsically motivated, free-time physical activity: considerations for recess. J Phys Educ, Recreat Dance,79(4). P.37–40
If you agree, as I do, sign this petition and send Superintendent William George and the members of Middletown's Board of Education the message that Recess is just as important to our children's learning as extra time in the classroom. - MM