Recess time in Europe vs America

By Ke'Tara Wells

On Tuesday, ATTN posted a video on their Facebook page regarding physical education in Europe compared to America. The video was meant to go viral in hopes to seek attention regarding the physical education in American schools, allowing children to experience life beyond the chalkboard.

The video mentions that in Europe, having students experience the outdoors is a big priority. However, it appears that might not be the case for schools in the U.S. Up to 40 percent of school districts have reduced or eliminated recess time for kids, compared with students in America, who spend seven minutes a day on outdoor activities.



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Unlike Americans, Europeans don't view recess as a waste of time. Like ATTN: on Facebook. For a full look at SBS's Dateline program referenced in our video, here is a link to "Kids Gone Wild," about Denmark's forest kindergartens:

Posted by ATTN: on Tuesday, March 8, 2016



“We got this crazy idea that somehow recess was a waste of time,” journalist and author of "Last Child in The Woods" Richard Louv said.

While some may view physical activity such as recess as fun, letting loose after an intense class period not only is it helping to refresh their brains, but health factors too.

According to Learn NC, studies have shown that physical education reduced the risk for cardiovascular disease, prevents obesity, lowers blood pressure, increase test scores such as state tests, increase self-esteem, and motivates children to practice good character traits in their daily lives.

“We believe that children need to learn to manage risks,” United Kingdom Forest School Association teacher Sara Knight said.

In Europe, the schools allow students to play outside all day. They’re seen climbing trees, sharpening sticks knifes, wandering into the freezing woods and working together on various activities.

“They’re learning. Every time they pick up a stone, they are learning about texture. They’re learning about gravity,” mother and psychologist Dr. Kristina Towell said.

Facebook users weighed in on the debate while some agree with the video, other users either felt as though the video generalized Americans causing users to speak out regarding tax policies, state and Government officials.

“I don’t believe Americans, in general, and think recess is a waste of time. I just don’t believe that American government values public schooling/education as a priority of tax policy,” Charley Deppner said.

Candice Lincoln says, “A comment that if it’s too cold they shouldn’t go out because they’d get sick! As soon as the bell rang, we grabbed our sleds or skates and headed for the hills or the ponds!” Candice Lincoln commented. "Imagination is lost to gadgets!"