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Secrets from a Teacher: Kids Need Recess!

It was a beautiful weekend here in Iowa.  And my kids got plenty of time to play outdoors; at a birthday party in a park, at a family gathering with their cousins, walking the dog, and working outside with their dad.

But not every weekend is the same.  Sometimes, the weather is crummy or the kids get zoned out in front of the tv and don’t go outside.

Truth be told, those days affect them.  They are grouchier, restless, and more obstinate.  But a change of scenery and a chance to use their large motor skills can help.


Both exercise and time outdoors have been shown to improve mood and brain function.  So make an effort, even when the weather’s not great, to get your kids outside.  When weather really makes it impossible (Iowa in February, for example) try some large motor games inside.  My boys love trying to keep a balloon from hitting the ground, throwing ball-pit balls at a “spider web” of painter’s tape across a doorway, and doing Wii Just Dance.  Kids gyms and indoor playgrounds are great options, too.

Don’t underestimate the power of active play!

(This post is part of a Secrets from a Teacher to Make You a Better Parent, a part of the write31days.com challenge.  The best way to keep up with this series is to subscribe via email here.)

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  1. Great advice. I look forward to hearing all your teacher secrets. We live in a tiny apartment so I couldn't agree more. We HAVE to be intentional about getting exercise after school everyday. I get tired of having to be out all the time, but the days I don't take them to a park (or today it was the McDonald's play land) I regret it.

  2. Also, thanks for stopping by my blog. I am glad to find another lover of Gone With the Wind...also I love Laura Ingalls Wilder with a true and faithful and enduring love :)