Many will remember how recess became the highlight of a grade-schooler’s day.
At my own elementary school outdoor recess brought together classmates of all athletic abilities and creative talents. On the playground, the swing set filled up quickly with kids aiming to swing high and launch themselves into a pile of wood chips. Girls with gymnastic aspirations claimed the parallel bars to do flips or hang upside-down. Rambunctious boys clambered up the slide, flouting basic playground etiquette.
We scraped our knees and muddied our hands playing games which needed no special equipment and established no limits to the number who could play, Popular options in my grade included freeze tag, “IT” tag, and TV tag. We chased one another around the slides and across the field, under the monkey bars and over the wooden drawbridge. The teachers who monitored both the lunchroom and the playground were grateful to see us release some energy from the Lunchables, Dunkaroos, and Fruit-by-the-Foot that we had inhaled prior to heading outside.