The American Academy of Pediatrics has a new policy statement regarding the importance of unstructured play time during the school day. Eryn Brown explains:
Writing in the journal Pediatrics, lead authors Dr. Robert Murray and Catherine Ramstetter reported that recess, defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as “regularly scheduled periods within the elementary school day for unstructured physical activity and play,” provides “crucial” benefits that more structured physical education cannot.
First, they reported, kids learn best when they take breaks after periods of study — and recess, whether it involved physical activity or just hanging out, has been shown in studies to improve cognition, making students more attentive and productive. The unstructured nature of recess gives kids opportunities to flex their social muscles — learning how to communicate and share with their peers. Recess lets children let off steam and manage stress, they wrote. It can also help kids meet the recommended 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity recommended by the academy.
Read article at LATimes.com here.
Read AAP policy statement here.