Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: May 18, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971935 | Print ISBN: 9781412966702 | Online ISBN: 9781412971935 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Dorothy Sluss & Olga S. Jarrett
Say the word recess and most people think of play. Although the term recess has been used to describe a break that occurs between structured meetings, such as those that occur in court or legal proceedings, recess typically refers to a break period during the school day, usually outdoors. When recess occurs, children stop whatever they are doing and go outdoors for a period of time, generally 15 to 30 minutes. During this time, they can decide what they play, who they play with, and where they play. They can even decide not to play, instead talking with friends, wandering, or sitting alone. It is their choice. When the teacher indicates that recess is over, children return to the classroom and the routine that they were following. For children who are involved in structured activities throughout the day, recess provides welcome freedom from mandated activities. The history of recess in ...