I recently received a response to a post stating, Why not just let children play at recess? Contrary to popular belief Peaceful Playgrounds strongly advocates for schools, "to allow children free time at recess to do what ever they choose or do nothing." I guess the misunderstanding comes from the appearance of a "structured playground." A better and more accurate way to think of a Peaceful Playground is as an "enriched play environment."
WE do not advocate structuring recess in any way. We believe that in enriching the play environment most children will choose a game or activity. We found that placing game markings were necessary because of the "out-of-sight-out-of mind principle. Most children would play a game for about 2 weeks and then forget it was an option. Painting the game marking or activity on the playground was a visual reminder of their many game choices.
SO, PLEASE, the next time someone suggests that Peaceful Playgrounds provides a "structured recess" set them straight by suggesting that we provided instead an "enriched play environment."
For more information on Peaceful Playgrounds Philosophy visit our Featured Articles Section:
Low-Cost High-Activity Playgrounds
School Recess before Lunch
Bullying Prevention: Life Lessons on Good and Evil
Head Start Body Start in Body Building?