October Parenting Article on Recess

Parenting the home of Parenting and Baby Talk Magazines included an article entitled, "Why Kids Really Need Recess".

It is a nice article filled with stories of parents who advocated to bring back recess in their school. At the end of the article is a list of resources and suggestions on how to get back recess.

What you need to know to fight for your child's right to play midday.

1. Get informed. Arm yourself with plenty of research about the importance of play to kids' development. You'll find great resources at Peaceful Playgrounds, an advocacy group whose Right to Recess Campaign includes downloadable PowerPoint presentations and studies to support the argument. You can also connect with your state's "recess advocate," who can help gather information and resources, here.

2. Get galvanized. Teresa Evanko Bilello, a Muncie, IN, mom of two, rallied a core group of parents to speak at school-board meetings so they could see she wasn't the only mom riled up about the lack of recess at her children's schools. "Make yourselves a nuisance if necessary," says Bilello, whose efforts successfully brought playground time back to the schools' schedule.

3. Get to the higher-ups. Talking to your child's principal about reinstating or extending recess is a good start. But if you're really looking to change school policy, take your case to the local school board (or higher!), where system-wide reform can be made. And remember says Walton: "We're the ones who vote these people into their positions. If they don't give your school what it needs, you can replace them with leaders who will."