Senior National Trainer, Deb Sugerman, was recently at a school completing a post-training Recess Observation and observed the majority of students in the 3rd grade engaged in activities. As a result of their training, the Recess Staff had added the Core Recess games of Switch, Foursquare, and Knockout Basketball and had an area for Game of the Week where the students were playing Elbow Tag. Students were active, laughing, and having fun.
Deb noticed one student standing by the fence, not engaged in any activities. She walked over to the young girl and started a conversation. When asked, the student said she did not like recess because she didn’t like any of the games being played. Deb asked her what she would like to play and she answered “floor hockey.” They approached the Recess Staff Head and asked her about the possibility of playing floor hockey during recess. The Staff member enthusiastically answered that there were sticks and balls available for recess and that it could be added as a Game of the Week for the following week. She asked if the student would be willing to help her get it organized.
When Deb checked in with the Recess Staff a few months later, she asked about the specific student and was told that floor hockey was a big success and that the student was now also playing other games at recess.
- Ask reluctant students what they would like to do at recess.
- Being ehtusiastic about students' ideas and trying to make their ideas happen increases their self confidence and their engagement with recess.
What better way of achieving our goal of having students playing games on their own than to empower our students to implement their own ideas!