Jan 26, 2014

Cooped up inside at recess? No problem!


GREENVILLE – So how are first graders handling being cooped up in the classroom during recess? According to their teacher at Greenville’s Woodland Heights, Mrs. Arnett, they’re handling it fine.

“They don’t seem to mind,” she said. “Actually they prefer being inside when all they can do is play on the blacktop.” The playground is gravel; when there’s snow on the ground the kids aren’t allowed out there for safety reasons.

“Now, the teachers? That’s another story,” said another teacher, grinning. Sometimes students need the release playground activity can give them to use up energy. If they don’t get it outside they try to get it in the classroom. The teacher has to divert them to more appropriate activities like games and art. When they come in from the playground, they’ve used up the excess energy and are ready to get back to work.

According to Lisa Maher, assistant principal, indoor recess has been a common occurrence since students returned to school in January.

“We have the 25 degree rule,” she said. “Temperature or wind chill under 25 means indoor recess.” They will also be inside if it’s raining or icy. She noted it can be an issue with the kids; more so than the teachers.

“They got to go outside once last week. The kids were cheering!”

Jan. 22 was another ‘inside recess’ day. Mrs. Arnett’s students seemed to have no problem with being cooped up inside once again. They played games, worked with interlocking blocks to make things or spent time on the few computers and a notepad in the room.

Leah was making a hotel. She had the base completed and was beginning to build the rooms.

“How many visitors will it hold?” “Tons,” she said.

Rebecca was making a snowflake, as was another student. Students know snowflakes come in all shapes and sizes… the two being worked on were in the shape of a hand and a diamond.

One young man was sitting quietly at his desk watching his classmates play. “I was thinking about drawing something,” he said. He was still thinking about it when recess was over.

“I’d rather be inside,” said another teacher when she dropped into the room to check on one of the students. “It’s cold out there!”

It seems the students agreed.

Woodland first graders don’t seem to mind recess indoors during cold weather. They have plenty to keep them busy, including games, art and just talking among friends. (Bob Robinson photo)
This birthday girl was hard at work creating a unique snowflake. They’ve been taught no two snowflakes are exactly alike, which allows for creativity with a pair of child-proof scissors. (Bob Robinson photos)


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