Disappearing Recess Implications – Ben Hirshberg

Increase in Math and Reading

  • This increase in math and reading classroom instruction time is significant in time as well as prevalent among schools. Elementary schools in more than six out of ten school districts in the United States have added at least an hour and fifteen minutes per week of math and reading curriculum in the five year years after NCLB passed. Often times, schools have added more than two and a half hours of math and reading classroom instruction time. However, because their school day did not increase, the added time had to be cut out from other subjects. Recess has clearly been one of the biggest cuts, as now only seventy nine percent of schools have a daily recess period. Additionally, a recent study showed that thirty percent of third graders had less than fifteen minutes of recess per day. These statistics are worrying, because there is no precedent for increased subject specific classroom instruction time leading to increased learning.
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