Study: Recess before lunch could benefit students

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MUNCIE, Ind. (WEHT) – A new study says recess before lunch could benefit students.

According to the study from Ball State, by allowing students to play on the playground before eating lunch, it could boost their appetites while cutting down on food waste and discipline problems.

This study is based on 527 surveys collected from elementary school principals.

The study found 82% of the principals would recommend having recess before lunch to other schools. Some principals say the most common barriers to making the change include: a clear need to revise the daily schedule (28%), issues related to academic hours (27%), staffing issues (19%), and inadequate space in the lunchroom and playground (15%).

And some say there are schools that are concerned about “breaking tradition”.

In schools that have recess before lunch, principals reported increased consumption of lunch (52%), improved student behavior in the cafeteria (45%), increased focus on consuming lunch (37%), students more attentive during class (28%), and decreased food waste (27%).

The majority of participants indicated they would consider scheduling recess before lunch (81%).

More than half of the principals indicated they were unaware of the research surrounding recess before lunch.

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(This story was originally published on October 17, 2019)

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