The Importance of Recess
When school is in session, parents and teachers often want children to accomplish as much they can. But research has shown that we should not forget the value of play and relaxation. That point of view was strongly supported by a policy statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics, published early in 2013.
The Benefits of Free, Unstructured Play Time
A 2009 study from a group of researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York showed that, compared to those who have minimal or no recess time, elementary school children who have free time during the day receive higher ratings from teachers on their classroom behavior. The study (like the policy statement mentioned) was published in the journal Pediatrics.
It makes sense for children to have a break in the school day that is given over to free, unstructured, active play — the definition of recess.