Walking laps at recess?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Amanda, Sep 7, 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2001
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    79

    Sep 7, 2015

    One of my facebook friends posted about this recently. Her child had to walk laps at recess so she asked if it was legal. It made me wonder how many schools still do it. I know when I was teaching, it was common to have them walk instead of just sit during their time out.
     
  2.  
  3. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,010
    Likes Received:
    289

    Sep 7, 2015

    It depends on your state. Some states, such as Virginia, have a law that students must get recess, and that it is a time for self-selected activities. (PE can't be counted as recess, and recess can't be counted as PE.)

    Obviously, many teachers ignore it (or aren't either aware of the law.) Other states have no such laws.
     
  4. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,010
    Likes Received:
    289

    Sep 7, 2015

    Here is the statute for Missouri:

    Missouri Revised Statutes

    Chapter 167
    Pupils and Special Services

    Section 167.720.1

    Physical education required--definitions.

    167.720. 1. As used in this section, the following terms shall mean:

    (1) "Moderate physical activity", low- to medium-impact physical exertion designed to increase an individual's heart rate to rise to at least seventy-five percent of his or her maximum heart rate. Activities in this category may include, but are not limited to, running, calisthenics, aerobic exercise, etc.;

    (2) "Physical education", instruction in healthy active living by a teacher certificated to teach physical education structured in such a way that it is a regularly scheduled class for students;

    (3) "Recess", a structured play environment outside of regular classroom instructional activities, where students are allowed to engage in supervised safe active free play.

    2. Beginning with the school year 2010-11:

    (1) School districts shall ensure that students in elementary schools participate in moderate physical activity for the entire school year, including students in alternative education programs. Students in the elementary schools shall participate in moderate physical activity for an average of one hundred fifty minutes per five-day school week, or an average of thirty minutes per day. Students with disabilities shall participate in moderate physical activity to the extent appropriate as determined by the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act;

    (2) Each year the commissioner of education shall select for recognition students, schools and school districts that are considered to have achieved improvement in fitness;

    (3) Students in middle schools may at the school's discretion participate in at least two hundred twenty-five minutes of physical activity per school week;

    (4) A minimum of one recess period of twenty minutes per day shall be provided for children in elementary schools, which may be incorporated into the lunch period. Any requirement of this section above the state minimum physical education requirement may be met by additional physical education instruction, or by other activities approved by the individual school district under the direction of any certificated teacher or administrator or other school employee under the supervision of a certificated teacher or administrator.

    (L. 2009 S.B. 291)
     
  5. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,010
    Likes Received:
    289

    Sep 7, 2015

  6. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2001
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    79

    Sep 7, 2015

    I don't have any doubts about the legality of it. She interpreted it as physical punishment though. Her child had never gotten in trouble before so she was surprised by it.

    I thought it was a fairly common consequence.
     
  7. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 7, 2015

    It's common at my school, but I think it's a stupid punishment (personal opinion). I think I'm the only one on my team who doesn't so it. So, yeah, common enough.
     
  8. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    5,277
    Likes Received:
    745

    Sep 7, 2015

    Our administrators require us to have students with detention during recess walk the whole time. Until we were told that, we had them sit in the shade.
     
  9. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 7, 2015

    I'm also amused at the idea running laps is physical punishment. What do we call the track team, then?
     
    2ndTimeAround likes this.
  10. MLB711

    MLB711 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    53

    Sep 7, 2015

    Whenever I have subbed for classes who get recess duty, I have had some students stay in the entire recess (usually for missed homework or to make up a test) or stand along the wall outside for the first 5 minutes. Students who stood along the wall could go play once the teacher on duty said so. At some schools, the teachers on duty were very strict - students had to face the wall, couldn't talk or move, stood with hands at their sides, etc.

    I feel like interpreting walking laps as "corporal punishment" is overkill. I agree with Backroads that it's a stupid punishment, but I have a hard time buying the corporal punishment excuse.
     
  11. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2001
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    79

    Sep 7, 2015

    What do you do instead?
     
  12. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2013
    Messages:
    2,985
    Likes Received:
    435

    Sep 7, 2015

    I'm wondering if the problem has nothing to do with walking, and more to do with the fact that her kid was held responsible for doing something "inappropriate".
     
    2ndTimeAround likes this.
  13. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,252
    Likes Received:
    791

    Sep 7, 2015

    I never have kiddos stand by the wall. I do have consequences which can include walking laps at recess, but it is never than 3-4 minutes out of recess.
     
  14. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 7, 2015

    Have them call their parents. If they're in enough trouble to miss recess, they're in enough trouble to inform their parents. I don't usually take away recess and I guess I see no reason for a recess consequence substitute for the same reason--I guess,in my mind it's all the same thing. They can sit in time-out during class.
     
  15. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    4,231
    Likes Received:
    1,172

    Sep 7, 2015

    Yep. This. :thumb:
     
  16. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    4,231
    Likes Received:
    1,172

    Sep 7, 2015

    We have recess detention and lunch detention.

    Recess detention involves reporting to a specific classroom (which is staffed by instructional aides) and completing work silently.

    Lunch detention consists of campus beautification (aka picking up trash).
     
  17. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    4,329
    Likes Received:
    564

    Sep 8, 2015

    Running/walking isn't the punishment. It is the restriction from being allowed to play with your friends that is the punishment. If the students were told to sit out they would have had their time "to run off excess energy" taken from them. Can't take recess away from kids in a lot states, so making it less fun is the best some schools can do.
     
  18. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 8, 2015

    I disagree. Running/walking is part of the punishment if they are being told what physical activity they must do for those minutes they are not allowed to play with their friends. What if they were told to do push-ups for those minutes? Sit-ups? Jumping jacks?

    If the punishment is not playing with friends, the student would be segregated from the friends and told they could do anything they wanted to do, but alone. They could exercise or sit. Since you can't force a child to "run off excess energy" at recess, when you determine they must exercise that does become part of the punishment.
     
  19. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 8, 2015

    A choice that is not forced on all.
     
  20. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2015
    Messages:
    1,323
    Likes Received:
    807

    Sep 8, 2015

    I taught at a school that did not allow walking during "time out" due to fear that a student who suddenly developed a physical difficulty would be afraid to pause in walking and the school would be sued.
     
  21. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 8, 2015

    I'm more referring to the parent getting upset over the laps (though I agree whole-heartedly she's probably upset her kid is subject to discipline for something he did). Running laps is hardly corporeal punishment if it's done for recreation in another setting.
     
  22. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 8, 2015

    So are push-ups, boxing, kick-boxing, and other contact sports. Do you advocate physical punishments because these sports exist?
     
  23. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    4,334
    Likes Received:
    976

    Sep 8, 2015

    I think walking is a great idea but there should be at least one other option like another physical activity such as playing kickball or whatever. It's better than having them just sitting around although during my recess time as a kid my friends and I would just bring books to read.
    ETA: I didn't realize the OP was talking about walking laps as a punishment. I thought it was just an optional activity and I didn't read the other posts.
     
  24. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 8, 2015


    Hardly. Like I said, I don't take away recess as punishment as a general rule. I don't do wall sits, push-ups, or any of that. I personally find them ridiculous punishments. It's a tad hard to advocate physical punishments when I simply don't do them. And just because I let kids use their recess to play doesn't mean I don't give consequences.

    I do, however, find it ironic that someone complains about running a few laps as some horrible corporeal punishment when it just... isn't. The vast majority of kids aren't going to suffer due to a couple of laps. It's exercise being used in an odd way and nothing more.

    I'm not exactly sure where you got the idea I advocate physical punishments.
     
  25. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Messages:
    3,642
    Likes Received:
    108

    Sep 8, 2015

    Ours have to sit on the patio. I'd rather have them walking, but I think it is better to have them have a choice: either sit silently or walk silently (and feel free to sit if you get tired).
     
  26. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,172

    Sep 8, 2015

    In most cases, it doesn't seem like it'd be a logical consequence. I'd prefer to have someone, say who is acting up in class by blurting non-stop, sit down and do a reflection with me during recess on how it is affecting it others and how they could make it right. I don't ask kids to miss recess for the most part, but when situations do come up, it's always so that a logical consequence can take place (made a mess - clean it up, hurt someone's feelings - make it right with that person, didn't do the work or homework - use their recess time to have the opportunity to finish their work).
     
  27. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 8, 2015

    Maybe advocate was too strong of a word. However, you were supporting the idea of running/walking laps not being punishment because of the existence of a track team. That argument follows to other methods used as punishment being acceptable because the sport exists.

    Having known several kids, one that ended up being taken to the hospital, due to an over zealous PE teacher deciding that whole class physical "consequences" of running/walking was the way to address the known culprits being behavior problems for the sub, I do see that running/walking laps is physical punishment regardless of whether or not a track team exists.

    Interesting justification, though. Since the majority of students won't suffer consequences and there is a track team, it should be ok for others to choose this method even if you do not.
     
  28. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 8, 2015

    What are your arguments against the punishment, a2z? I find it interesting you are battling me when plenty of others actually support the punishment.

    I'd also wager there was a big difference between what the overzealous teacher did and a couple of laps. I merely trust teachers to have good reasons, at least to them, for their consequences. Heaven knows I've been criticized for not doing laps or wall sits.
     
  29. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,813
    Likes Received:
    52

    Sep 8, 2015

    We started making students walk for punishment last year. It was a wonderful decision. I only require one to four laps...less than 5 to 10 minutes if they walk and don't pout. They have a walking ticket that they sign and so does the parents. Our thoughts as a group was that having the kids sit on a bench when they need to have activity was not working. We have not had a problem with parents, knock on wood! We even have students walk the hallway during inside recess if they have had a rough day.
     
  30. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,172

    Sep 8, 2015

    Out of curiosity, what is the punishment for?
     
  31. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,813
    Likes Received:
    52

    Sep 8, 2015

    For example, I have given it twice this year. One little girl would not line up each day at the end of recess. She was warned two days in a roll. The third day she was warned before recess. When it was time to line up, she continued to play. So I assigned her two laps after discussing with her why she had to come in and what would happen the next time. The day she walked two laps, she stayed on the swing after time to go into class. When I went to get her she blamed her friends for not "telling" her that it was time to go in. I gave her three laps as punishment. She was the second person in line today. She told me that she would rather play than walk,so she was going to obey the teacher.

    The other child was a young man that was in trouble several times for talking out and playing in the bathroom. He had several warnings and after the second time that he was returned to my room by another teacher because of his behavior in the classroom, I had him walk two laps. He has had no problems since.
     
  32. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Messages:
    5,860
    Likes Received:
    734

    Sep 8, 2015

    There has been talk of doing this at my school this year. In the past we've been told taking recess is illegal. Most teachers at my school don't agree with taking away recess anyway, because of the argument that the kids losing it are the kids that need to move the most. I'm in the minority at my school. I don't agree with taking recess for every single thing, but I think a lot of times it really is a logical consequence. I think it is so logical to say, "You can choose to do this assignment now or at recess" for kids that are goofing off or being disruptive during work time, and in the past when I have been able to say that it's been extremely effective. That transfers so well to the "real world" also. If I choose to spend my planning time chatting with other teachers instead of working, then I have to spend more free time after school working. I think it's an important lesson for kids to learn. I do think a lot of behavior issues at my school are due to the fact that we have very few, if any, real consequences for kids. A pp mentioned calling home- IMO, that only works in higher SES districts. By having the "consequence" be calling home, you're putting the entire responsibility of enforcing a real consequence on the parent. In my district, most parents either don't agree that the behavior is inappropriate or can't/won't enforce a consequence at home for poor behavior at school.

    I'm glad we're at least talking about allowing some type of consequence at school with walking laps at recess. I'd rather have some option then no option. This does take away the concern that kids aren't moving enough, but IMO it also takes away the "logical" part in most scenarios, since in order for the consequence to be logical you would need to have the kid finishing work or doing a reflection sheet or something related to the behavior.
     
  33. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 9, 2015

    Backroads, I was disagreeing with your poor argument not any position about what you do or agree with or what others do or agree with. Your justification for the acceptability of laps made little sense based on the existence of other physical sports.

    Your argument is that because a track team that student's join exists that running/walking laps is acceptable and not a big deal.

    I was just pointing out with other physical activities that are done as part of a team that people willingly participate to show how the argument doesn't hold water.

    On a side note, which has nothing to do with you or your comments...
    running/walking laps is actually a way to use the time for punishment while trying to not break the laws associated with recess time in may states. Since in many states the law requires students have recess that allows for them to have physical movement (and often choice) schools have decided that this is a way that they can use the recess time for punishment and keep to the activity part of the law.
     
  34. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 9, 2015

    I guess I'm just a bit surprised at the idea of a parent freaking out her child will get injured or too tired running a few laps and then turning right around and signing the kid up for track. You're right, the aims are different, the mentality is different. But, exercise for exercise, it's really the same thing. If you're worried about your kid getting hurt running twice around the playground, you probably don't want to sign him for track.
     
  35. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 9, 2015

    Could you show me where the OP, Amanda, said that the child is signed up for the track team? I didn't see that fact. Is running/walking laps used as a punishment for just those children involved in track or other sports?
     
  36. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 9, 2015

    Like I said, I generally don't take recess away. But... I also think that if missing one 15-minute session of recess is such a significant impact on a kid's physical/playtime of the day, there is a greater problem afoot.
     
  37. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,172

    Sep 9, 2015

    For the consequence to be logical, it doesn't necessarily have to take place immediately after the behavior. The bad choice could be made by the student, and then they could still be allowed to go play at recess, but only after the teacher reminds them that they will come back to that behavior at a later point (especially helpful if, as the teacher, you need some time to think about what would be the most logical consequence as opposed to acting in the moment). This could take place during a block of choice time in the classroom, it could be during some independent work time in a subject they succeed in...lots of opportunities. Honestly though, the following up with a logical consequence and that consequence using up a bit of the recess time would only happen occasionally, and if it didn't improve, then there's a sign that a different plan or set of strategies need to take place through the collaboration with various resources (i.e. perhaps OT, counselor, etc...) in the school. Even the students last year who struggled mightily with impulsiveness only missed parts of their recess maybe less than 5% of the time...and that's probably over exaggerating the amount, at that.

    This says what I was trying to say in the middle a bit better than I did.

    It's also akin a bit to our homework policy - students go to the library to finish their homework during the middle recess if not done, but if they are someone who is always showing up there, then we're expected to be working with the parents / other school resources and coming up with a different plan for that student (or attempting other strategies).
     
  38. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 9, 2015

    I can't and I never said she did. I've just seen far too many situations of the same. "My kid will die doing this under one circumstance, but will shine do the same thing under a different label". It's a silly difference.
     
  39. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,275
    Likes Received:
    1,632

    Sep 9, 2015

    Yeah. If missing recess isn't enough to keep up with homework most of the time, there kind of does need to be a different approach.

    I had one little boy I was starting to worry about, the kid could not get anything done. So.. I just had him finish during recess. It's incredible what he can get done in under 5 minutes that he couldn't do in 15. Yesterday and today he made it out to recess on time.

    However, if this went on for a week or so, every recess... I'd be doing some serious documentation. What's wrong? Really struggling with the concept? Perhaps trying to avoid recess for something?
     
  40. Amanda

    Amanda Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2001
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    79

    Sep 9, 2015

    I never knew this was such a controversial subject. ;)

    In this instance, the child got in trouble for talking. I'm guessing the classroom uses the green/yellow/red system (or something similar) where the child gets a consequence of 5 min off recess on the first offense.
     
  41. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,738
    Likes Received:
    1,653

    Sep 9, 2015

    So sorry. I thought you were talking about this post, not some situation you were making up or have experienced and lumped all such situations under that umbrella.

    I agree it is hypocritical of the parent if the complaint/argument is that the physical punishment is too much exertion and then sign the child up for the sport that contains the same physical exertion.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Backroads,
  2. waterfall,
  3. MrsC,
  4. TeacherNY
Total: 322 (members: 6, guests: 295, robots: 21)
test