Organized Recess Reduces Bullying, Improves Student Behavior
|May 17, 2012||Posted by M. P. under Children and Family, Education, Program Model, Research||
A study sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and conducted by Mathematica Policy Research and Stanford University found that recess, specifically organized recreational time lead by experienced instructors, not only had a positive impact on student behavior, but prepared them better for classroom learning.
Schools in five cities across the country were randomly selected to implement the Playworks program, a program where coaches are placed in schools in low-income areas to facilitate organized play during recess time, compared to similar schools without the program.
- A significant positive impact of the Playworks program on teachers’ perceptions of student safety during recess
- Reduced bullying during recess as reported by teachers in treatment schools
- Improved behavior at recess, overall, by students at the treatment schools
- Less difficulties transitioning the students back to classroom or “learning” mode after recess and a higher level of attention in the classroom per teachers in treatment schools
These findings, as well as the research questions around the implementation of the Playworks program, are discussed the report, Findings from a Randomized Experiment of Playworks: Selected Results from Cohort 1 available on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation website. The paper lays out a persuasive case for investing in recess to reduce bullying and exclusionary behaviors among students as well as better prepare them for the remainder of the school day, rather than striking it from the schedule completely.