With the approval from our PEC, our school will be implementing a new schedule during our lunch break that will allow students to play first and then eat. The “Play First Lunch” schedule has been adopted by several schools in the lower mainland, across Canada and in the United States with many benefits including:
- Improved student behaviour on the playground and in the classroom
- Fewer accidents during the lunch break
- Students are more relaxed and focused on eating rather than thinking about getting outside to play
- Less litter on the school ground and inside the school
- More food eaten; increased fluid intake
- Students return to the classroom more quickly and are settled and ready to learn
When the 12:00 noon bell rings, the students will be dismissed to the playground followed by time for going to the washroom and washing their hands and then sitting down to eat lunch in the classroom.
The sample schedule that we will put into operation is as follows:
12:00 – Play time
12:30 – Bell to enter the school to use the washroom and wash hands
12:35 – Eat lunch (Music appreciation/Oral Reading)
12:50 – Afternoon classes begin
We anticipate that the “Play First Lunch” schedule will promote healthy eating and improve student achievement. Schools that have undertaken this schedule change have found that students are hungrier and thirstier at school. To prevent your child from becoming too hungry, encourage him/her to eat a healthy breakfast and be sure to send a recess snack.