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Should Recess be taken away from a child as a form of discipline?

I ran across this situation here on cafemom. A mom was upset that her child has not had recess in over a week because of his behavior problems. Is recess an earned privilege or is it a right? Honestly I think it would depend on the situation. I don't agree with no recess today because of your behavior yesterday type thing but I have subbed in a lot of class rooms where the only leverage I had was taking away recess. What is your opinion on this?


Asked by JeremysMom at 1:31 AM on Dec. 16, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 35 (75,344 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (57)
  • If the child's behavior problems stem from ADD/ADHD, then taking away the recess will only make the issue worse. It doesn't say here if the child has hyperactive tendencies, but letting the brain off the hook for a few moments and letting the body go from the "restraint" of having to sit (this is how these children feel) can actually help them focus better and behave better. Recess for them is an absolute requirement. Instead of taking away something that helps them, punish them with a nose in the circle on the chalkboard or time standing facing the corner. Have them do pushups - which would be like having a recess - but don't take away the chance to get out the extra energy. They need it too much.

    Answer by GrowingMama at 2:43 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • Recess is fun and games. If one doesn't do the work and follow the rules they don't get the fun and games. Simple as that.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:38 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • IMO it depends on if the kids have PE class in their school. When I was in school PE class was still in elementary school, so recess was a privilege. but now with some schools eliminating PE, recess is the only time some kids get any exercise. If it's the only exercise, then no it should not be taken away.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:48 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • I think it depends on what they did and other factors like PE, if they try other motivators and or punishments first etc. , I have had them try to take snack away from my daughter because of something really stupid. She was 5 at the time and has autism and I became furious. She is the pickiest eater ever and to take her snack away (while other children in the room are sitting at the table eating snack) is just un called for. Now for a bribe or do this and u can have this or if you dont u cant etc, 1 on 1 is different but this was a class snack time with everyone else eating.

    Answer by Crystal42683 at 1:56 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • they do this at DD's school, too. I was just thinking today that I thought it harsh. When we misbehaved, we got sent out of the classroom or put in the corner. Now this is considered CRUEL and whatever. We never missed recess, though. I believe that is a time for kids to unwind. They need it. It seems counterproductive to ban a child from recess due to behavior problems when exercise could help solve the issue.

    Answer by MammaMia72 at 2:19 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • Recess should never be taken away. Kids need to expend that energy. There are plenty other forms of discipline that are more effective anyway.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:51 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • I think if the kids are misbehaving you have to take something away, in my day they could paddle you & come to think of it there were no school shootings or beatings of teachers, you were pretty much scared of them lol but unfortunately "they" have took a lot of things out of our schools & now "they" & us are paying the consequences ~ go figure


    Answer by tntornado45 at 8:16 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • I think it is fine to take away recess time for bad behavior....what other things can the teachers take away????
    In the boys school if you get your card flipped once you loose the 5 of the 20 minutes of recess, flip it twice then you loose 10 minutes of the 20, and so that way they still get recess, just less time.

    Answer by Mimomof3boys at 8:20 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • No never but yet again and again it is, it was when i was little to they should have a little something to look foward to in the day?All work an no play make jack a dull boy.

    Answer by kim168 at 8:36 AM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • That is done in my son's school.

    Answer by jareda69 at 8:39 AM on Dec. 16, 2008