Advocate for Recess in Massachusetts Schools

  1. Updates

Recess is unpredictable. Some days you have outdoor recess, some days you might be stuck indoors. Some days children have twenty minutes to play, other days only ten minutes after conflicts occur in the lunchroom. Some days every student plays at recess, but other days the majority stand on the sidelines.

Playworks’ mission is to improve the health and well-being of children by increasing opportunities for physical activity and safe, healthy play. We have proven that recess is an untapped opportunity to accomplish this goal. The more recess the better!

And now, Massachusetts has an opportunity to make recess more predictableat least the amount of recess time during the school day. Bill H.235 “An Act to Mandate Recess for Elementary School Children” is a state law requiring that all K-5 students receive at least twenty consecutive minutes of supervised, safe, and unstructured free-play recess daily.

According to a 2016 report released by SHAPE America (The Society of Health and Physical Educators), only eight states have policies requiring daily recess in schools.

Playworks is serious about play. We help schools across the country create recess environments where kids feel included, stay active, and build valuable social and emotional skills. We have proven that safe, healthy play at recess can increase vigorous physical activity, decrease bullying, and recover valuable instructional time.

We are not in the business of advocacy; however, we do love that this bill raises awareness about the importance of recess. It’s time we reimagine recess as a crucial part of the school day.

If you’re a fan of recess, and feel inclined, please consider calling your state representative and tell them why you love recess.

Follow these steps:

  1. Find out who your state representative is here.
  2. Call their office.
  3. Speak with an aid or leave a message in which you:
    • State your name and address
    • Mention that you are calling about Bill H.235 (the recess bill)
    • Explain why you love recess
    • Ask them to speak up on behalf of the bill

One phone call. It’s that simple.

We look forward to increasing awareness around the importance of recess and ensuring children in Massachusetts have the opportunity to play every day.

 

More Updates


August 1, 2022

2021-22 Year End Report ›

After two years of isolation and adapted schooling, our students and staff spent a full year together in school buildings. We continued innovating to meet the needs of students, schools, and partners. Our return to in-person events was filled with joy, and throughout it all, bringing the healing power of play to students across New…

three people with Playworks shirts
three people with Playworks shirts

July 28, 2022

A year of social and emotional learning ›

“You can’t do SEL, trauma, or equity work without each other,” Jennette Claassen, Head of Evaluation, Playworks. As Playworks continued to progress on our equity journey, we explored a critical question: what are the intersections between play, social and emotional learning, physical activity, and trauma? A working group focused on this question decided, among other…

parent playing with kids outside
parent playing with kids outside

July 21, 2022

Games to play at home this summer ›

Are you looking for games to play at home using only things found around your house? Look no further! In case you haven’t heard – school’s out for summer! With long stretches of hot days still to come, you might be looking forward to playing some new games with your family or people in your…