Posts Tagged Importance of Recess

Recess and Discipline

I recently read an article in The Atlantic about teaching in Finland. In the piece, an American teacher in Helsinki questioned the national practice of giving 15 minute breaks each hour—until he saw the difference it made in his classroom.

In Finland, teachers send kids outside—rain or shine—for a 15-minute break after every 45 minutes of teaching. And the children get to decide how they spend their break times. There are no teacher-led activities or expected things to do during recess. Usually, teachers take turns—two at a time—supervising the playground during these 15-minute stints.

To Americans, this approach sounds too soft—too lazy. But as this teacher in Helsinki noted, “My students in the States had always seemed to drag their … >>>