Published Online: May 21, 2013
Published in Print: May 22, 2013, as Recess

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"Does Better Recess Equal a Better School Day?"

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A new study suggests children may benefit from a little more organized activity at recess.

The study released last week focuses on the work of Playworks, an Oakland, Calif.-based nonprofit organization that provides recess coaches to low-income schools. Researchers from Mathematica Policy Institute and the John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities at Stanford University found that children whose recess time is directed by Playworks coaches are a little more active than those with comparatively unstructured recess.

To reach that conclusion, children were fitted with accelerometers, which measure physical activity. At Playworks schools, students spent, on average, 14 percent of their recess time being very active. Students at other schools were as active during recess 10 percent of the time.

Vol. 32, Issue 32, Page 5

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