This I Believe

Sherry - Rochester, Illinois
Entered on June 12, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50

LIONS ON THE PLAYGROUND

What are we doing to our elementary school children? I heard last week that many elementary school children are not allowed morning or afternoon recesses anymore because of academic pressures. (To meet state and federal annual yearly progress and ISAT test grade levels) Even adult workers are allowed (by law) 2 / 15 minute breaks (morning and afternoon) and at least 45 minutes for lunch. Many students get 20 minutes eating time and 20 minutes recess. What are we thinking? That is there only break. I am wondering what price we will pay for these practices. We already see a rise in emotional and behavioral disorders like random aggression, obsessive/compulsive disorder, hyperactivity, depression, and a variety of anxiety disorders. Not to mention their inability to negotiate, compromise, or work with peers. There are few opportunities to practice. Add to that time at home in front of the TV. Or computer. Many schools report a rise in anger among their students. It is said that children get angrier quicker. So many students are taking medication as early as first grade. Not that any correlation has been established, but I am wondering.

My generation is paying for poor choices our parents and grandparents have made, and future generations will pay for poor choices we are making. Let’s think this one through! I would like to know what the experts say.