Imagine a school day where morning and lunchtime play have been cut to a minimum to leave more time for the core curriculum – maths and literacy! This is the reality for many schools in the USA!
Some brave schools in Ohio are bucking the trend and giving more time for free unstructured play – that’s 15 minutes 4 times a day! And the kids think they are lucky!
New Zealand children take it for granted that they will have 1 hour 20 mins a day. What’s more, research shows that children allowed to play freely – role playing, swinging from the bars and playing sport, do better academically. Surprise, surprise!
“If you want a child to be attentive and stay on task, and also if you want them to encode the information you’re giving them in their memory, you’ve got to give them regular breaks,” says Ohio State University pediatrician Bob Murray.”
“Murray says brain imaging has shown that kids learn better after a break for physical activity and unstructured play.”
Have a read of this article – Turns Out Monkey Bars And Kickball Might Be Good For The Brain
Be thankful that we teach in New Zealand!