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Recess: As important as math and reading, docs say

  • Blog Post by: Colleen Stoxen
  • December 31, 2012 - 2:01 PM

Playtime can be as important as class time for helping students perform their best.

Recess is most children’s favorite period, and parents and teachers should encourage that trend, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

Recess can be a critical time for development and social interaction, and in a new policy statement in the journal Pediatrics, pediatricians from the AAP support the importance of having a scheduled break in the school day.

The statement, published Monday, says recess is a "crucial and necessary component of a child's development."

“Children need to have down time between complex cognitive challenges,” says Dr. Robert Murray, a pediatrician and professor of human nutrition at the Ohio State University. “They tend to be less able to process information the longer they are held to a task. It’s not enough to just switch from math to English. You actually have to take a break.”

Read more from Time.

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