Getting kids more active while at recess but also teaching crucial social skills like conflict resolution is the goal of the non-profit Playworks.
Stephen Foxley from Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah is a member of the Playworks advisory board and says it is remarkable what the program is doing for kids in our community. He says, "I think that a lot of people think that recess is just free time, but really that’s when kids are learning how to socialize and interact with their peers, and those are skills that will help them for the rest of their lives."
Regence BlueCross BlueShield wants people of all ages to lead their healthiest lives possible, and getting kids more active helps with their social and emotional development.
Chris Contrad, Executive Director for Playworks Utah says,"Playworks is an organization that’s committed to improving both access and quality of recess and play in our elementary schools."
Playworks has been in Utah since 2011, and is currently operating in 57 schools, serving 35 thousand Utah kids.
"We don’t structure their time or their activities," says Conrad. "We don’t tell any kids what they have to do. What we do is to make sure the recess environment is physically safe, emotionally safe, so that social connections can thrive."
Foxley says, "Even if your school doesn’t offer Playworks, there are ways for parents to utilize those resources to improve the way their kids are playing at home or with their friends outside of school."