Tuesday, September 12, 2006


One of the stupidest developments in schools in America is the disappearance of recess. Kids are balls of energy, who need to move, burn up calories, clear the chalk dust out of their heads every couple of hours. Educators the world over have known this for centuries, but still, opportunities for energetic physical activity in schools a couple of times a day have dwindled almost to zero. Because of overcrowding, because of a lack of funds, because of this, because of that, because of the other lame excuse. And we wonder why there are so many behavioural problems! Hello! The kids just need to let off steam! Force some physical activity on them and you're half way to solving the problem.

Big item on the news tonight. A school principal in Tampa has come up with an "innovative" idea. Apparently the children used to be expected to eat their lunch and then sit quietly [right!] for the remainder of their half hour before returning to their classroom. But now, if they eat their lunch quickly and behave in a civilized fashion in the lunch room, they are being allowed, nay, encouraged, to go play on the monkey bars, swing on the swings, jump rope, play tag, in a word, move, expend energy, burn calories and--are you ready for this? It has been observed by the school administrators that after such activity the children return to the classroom in a much calmer frame of mind ! They concentrate better, are more receptive to learning and there are fewer behaviour problems . Duh! It must be true that there is actually nothing new in the world. Each generation has to rediscover everything for themselves and then it's "Eureka!" , "I've got it!", " Wow! What an earth shaking discovery!" Too bad some of the nuns, who tirelessly broke up our chatfests in remote corners of the playground, and insisted, instead, that we run and jump and get our blood circulating before going back inside to class, aren't alive to hear how cutting edge they were!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

funny how no one's got anything to say about this blog huh?