Does your school play before they eat lunch or afterwards?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Peachyness, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Aug 23, 2011

    Growing up and at every school I taught at, the kids always played after they ate lunch.

    One thing that has never changed was that kids would rush through their lunch so that they can go outside and play.

    My last school tried to fix this by keeping all kids in the cafeteria for 10 minutes before they were allowed to play. Problem was, a lot of the kids became very restless and there was just too many behavior issues so they gave this up.

    The kids would literally pick up their lunch. Take a few bites, and then throw the rest away.

    Something else my school tried to do was a garbology program to reduce garbage waste.

    Anyways, I just heard on the news about a school that is going to start having the kids play before they eat lunch. Does yours do this too?
     
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  3. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    We are split. Half the grades have recess first, half the grades have lunch first. They spend 20 minutes at one, and 20 minutes at the other.
     
  4. jteachette

    jteachette Comrade

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    The youngest(K4) plays after lunch, because they eat very early.
    The rest of the students play before lunch, and they eat a lot more than they used to.
     
  5. HeavenIsLoud

    HeavenIsLoud Rookie

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    I depends on the grade level and scheduling. It's about half and half. I've had it both ways and prefer for my first graders to have recess first. They are calmer in the cafeteria and eat more of their lunch.
     
  6. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    When I taught elementary, we got 20 minutes for lunch and no play time.
     
  7. soleil00

    soleil00 Comrade

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    We go out at staggered times, but it is always after lunch. Our kids aren't allowed out on their own, they are walked out as a class so it doesn't matter if they rush their lunch or not because they are going to sit there regardless until it is time to go out.
     
  8. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    When I was in school, we had lunch first and then recess. We got 20 minutes for lunch and 20 minutes for recess. No matter how quickly we finished our lunch we still had to wait the full 20 minutes. However, I don't remember anyone rushing through lunch or any behavior problems.
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    My district as well, but it's half an hour for each.
     
  10. Lynn K.

    Lynn K. Habitué

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    We switched last year. Now the kids play first and eat second. Everyone loves it! After an adjustment period last year, they just deal. They are eating more and wasting less, they come back to class already cooled off (the caf. has A/C) and they are ready to get back to work. We have also noticed that we get a lot less reports of "He touched me" and "She wouldn't let me play" complaints than before! Bonus!
     
  11. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Kindergfarten has always had morning recess at my school. The big kids started going before lunch a few years ago and it has really improved the cefeteria behavior. However, I really wonder why it made the news!
     
  12. jcar03

    jcar03 Companion

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    Growing up it was a set time so it didn't matter if you finish your lunch in 5 minutes, recess didn't start until lunch was completely over. I now sub at that school and recess is before lunch.
     
  13. mb_teacher

    mb_teacher Companion

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    We split the classes. Some have lunch before, some have recess before.
    I am currently having recess before and I LOVE it. The kids are cooled off and more relaxed when they come back into the classroom. That lunch period just seems to make all the difference.
     
  14. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Probably because recess first then lunch is not the norm here. I was surprised when I heard it on the news and thought, "wow, I bet that is a really good idea!" Growing up, I've EASILY attended 10 elementary schools (perhaps more, I stopped counting). I taught (as a regular teacher and a sub) at more than 10 schools too. All of these schools, plus the ones around my old home town and my new home town, everywhere, they all have lunch first and then recess. So, I guess it made news because it's just a different approach.

    Reading your guys' response made me realize that it's not as unusual as I thought. Interesting... not one response from CA. Perhaps it's just a CA thing? :rolleyes:
     
  15. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    The whole concept of recess attached to lunch is weird to me. I've never taught at a school that does it that way. We always had different recess times, or no recess time at all. I guess when I was in middle school if you ate fast you would have a few minutes to go hang out in the gym or something before your next class, but in elementary we went straight back to class. A few years we ate in the classroom.
     
  16. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    All of our students eat for the first 20 minutes of lunch hour (no cafeteria, the students bring their own lunches and eat in their classrooms), then everyone is outside for 40 minutes.
     
  17. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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    Our K students have recess first, because it takes them longer to eat. The rest of our students have recess after. We dismiss at the same time; there is no reason for them to rush through their lunches because they know they will just be sitting there.
     
  18. bros

    bros Phenom

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    In elementary (k-6) we had recess first and then lunch.

    20 minutes for each
     
  19. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    We have a 20 minute recess, 5 minute transition/washing hands time, and a 20 minute lunch. The kids are more hungry, and less food is wasted.
     
  20. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Even though I don't work at that school anymore, I think I am going to pass on this information and your guys' experience on to my teacher friends. It just makes so much more sense to play first then eat.
     
  21. Em_Catz

    Em_Catz Devotee

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    This year and last, the second graders had recess first and lunch second and the first graders have lunch first, and recess second.

    I'm surprised that we don't get more kids vomitting because they run and play quite rough. But then when I was in school, I ALWAYS had recess second and never remember becoming ill.

    Sidebar: This is the first year my county has had teachers as recess monitors. I really miss that 15 minutes. So far we have duty free lunch...I hope it stays that way for the rest of my career.
     
  22. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Neither. :cool: LOL.

    We eat from 11:47-12:17, and recess (on Fridays) is from 3:10-3:35 (to get back in the room at 3:40 because my class is on the polar opposite end of the school from the playground and it literally takes five minutes to HIKE up the hill, no kidding).
     
  23. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Ours depends on the grade level. I know having recess first is researched-based, but my problem is that it leaves no "wiggle room" for kids that eat more slowly. Last year, everyone had lunch first. The kids only have 20 minutes to eat, and that includes waiting in line for food. Most of the younger ones especially needed more time than that to finish their lunch. When we just sent them outside when they were done, they could stay for a few minutes in the cafeteria before going to recess if they needed more time. Now, since they go directly back to class from the cafeteria, they can't eat anything past those 20 minutes. I think a lot of our k-1 kids are going to end up eating very little for lunch.
     
  24. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Our schools eat at really early times (10:35 for the early grades and the first period of high school) so they aren't hungry. Tons of food gets tossed. Then they go outside, not the high schoolers. There isn't even an attempted hand wash time. They line up, are handed a wipe and squirted with sanitizer. The show up in the lunch room with sticky hands caked with grime and dirt. Then go outside for 20 min.

    In my preschool we have outside time, transition/wash time and then eat. They eat a ton more than the elm school children I work near.
     
  25. AndreGreen

    AndreGreen Companion

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    It depends on the schedule and the Grade level.

    For my Grade Level, 3rd Grade went out after they ate Lunch.
     
  26. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Three pages long and still, no one from the west coast has responded. I am a bit curious if anyone on this side of the US has recess first. I mean, it's not a major thing or anything. :D Just curious... :)
     
  27. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    I'm in the west.
     
  28. newteech

    newteech Rookie

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    Oregon here.

    We have always been lunch first, then recess. However my principal is swapping these this year!. I'm excited to see the changes this makes.
     
  29. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    They eat first, then have recess. The boys especially rush through their lunch so they can go play soccer.
     
  30. sjnkate

    sjnkate Rookie

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    Our lunch time is completely seperate from recess time. Kids running off to play during lunch would be like students leaving music class to go play. They do not leave the table until lunch is over. Most classes have recess in the afternoon and usually it is not directly before or after lunch.
     
  31. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    We don't let kids out early if they say they're done eating to go to recess. If their lunch is from 11:20-11:40, they can't raise their hand to leave until 11:40. We don't want them shoving down food to go play and it would overwhelm the outside duty teachers. I guess they could technically raise their hand to leave at 11:40 when they're not really done because they want to go outside on time, but if we have recess first and then lunch, the kids have to get back to class at the scheduled time no matter what, so it wouldn't be any different- and kids that would stay a few extra minutes (which was almost all of our k and 1st graders last year) don't even get the option of taking some more time to eat if they need it.
     

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