Saturday, April 20, 2013


Who didn't love recess? Because my elementary school was K-8, I was able to have recess until I graduated from 8th grade. Many of my neighborhood friends got "cut off" in middle school. I felt sorry for them. Recess was the best part of the school day!

I stayed pretty consistent with my group of friends through elementary school. I don't remember much about recess when we were young, but I imagine it contained a lot of playground time. Except I never went on the swings. They made me sick. I was more of a slide kind of girl. Mostly we just kind of ran around, though. We played tag, hop skotch, and jumped rope. Recess was all about taking a much needed break from learning reading lessons and math problems.

One thing I do remember about my younger years are the "recess weddings".  Everyone had those, right? Two kids in the class would decide they wanted to get married, and we'd all participate. The bride would march across the field and there'd be the groom, anxiously waiting to put Ring Pop on her finger. Or there was that one time a kid stole his mom's ring and tried to use that for his bride-to-be. He totally got in big trouble for that.

Recess started to change when we were in 5th grade. It wasn't really that cool to "play" anymore. So instead we'd lean against the school and talk. The boys would play sports and we'd watch, although some of the braver girls would jump in and play with them.

Middle school took a turn. It was always drama filled. Someone was mad at someone else, someone had their heartbroken, so and so didn't answer the note so and so wrote them in English class. Drama, I tell ya. Looking out on the field you'd see boys running around playing some kind of sport and girls in groups of 5-10, sitting in circles, talking. My crew was always on the lawn when it was nice outside, in our uniforms, pulling grass and chit chatting about the day's events. Rumors flew during recess. Did you hear that Katie kissed Matt? Ew! We were so preoccupied with gossip. It was all we knew.

In 7th grade, I took on a new duty at recess- Kindergarten watch. This was set up so that the kindergarten teachers could eat lunch between the morning class and afternoon class. A group of 7th grade girls would greet the little ones as their parents dropped them off, help them get all their stuff in their cubby, and do an activity with them until the teachers came back. It took up our entire recess period, but was actually quite fun. There wasn't as much drama when you were reading a book to a 5 year old. I loved doing that, and remember being super freaked out in later years when I realized they were old now and going onto high school. Somehow I just thought they'd always stay little.

There came a time in 8th grade when suddenly, we had all these couples in our class. It was weird. It was like they just decided to pair off, out of nowhere. It was hard to keep up with who was "going out" with you. You'd see the couples holding hands walking around the football field, and the rest of us talked about how stupid it was, not wanting to admit that we wanted that too. Although, looking back, it IS pretty stupid.

I actually particularly enjoyed "indoor recess". It was especially fun in 8th grade. Most of my friends were in my homeroom. So indoor recess meant we marched from the cafeteria back up to our homeroom and pulled our desks together. Most of the time, we played cards, spoons being our favorite. Other times we'd write each other notes or do homework. But mostly, we played cards. And we had a blast doing it.

Overall, recess was fun. I wish we had a "recess" at work, although I suppose our lunch hour is our version of recess. We all eat together and try not to talk about work.

Did you have recess? What kinds of things did you do?


Deanna said... Add Reply

You really dredged up some memories for me with this one. Apparently recesses have stood the test of time. We did all of those same things, except the marriage thing. That made me smile. Great memory.

Anonymous said... Add Reply

Your post reminds me of my distant memories in school and it strikes me that boy and girls view recess differently. Strange how that works.

Mostly, your words made me think of my daughter who is grown now. You've given me a bit of insight as to what it might have been like for her as well.

Nicely written and fun topic.

Visiting from the A to Z Challenge.

Write on!!

Tracy Moore said... Add Reply

Nice post Megan! Recess was, memories. We did all the stuff you wrote about. One thing that you didn't mention that we did a lot of and I forgot about till I was reading this was hopscotch. Not sure if kids play that any more. Thanks for the smile this morning. :)

Unknown said... Add Reply

Recess for me is quality time with friends and books :)

-Fellow blogger from A to Z!

Dee @ A Deecoded Life said... Add Reply

This was a really fun read! I do miss recess days! I remember how I used to be able to climb up on the jungle gym, hook my legs against the bars, and hang upside down. When I went back to that playground when I was older, I couldn't muster the courage to do it again. How did little me ever manage that???

And by the way thanks for dropping by my blog and reading my story. Means a lot to me.


Susan Gourley/Kelley said... Add Reply

I was one of the girls playing sports with the boys so I never got into the drama. My best friends were a couple of boys I walked to school with and another sporty girl. We stayed friends well past graducation.

Udita Banerjee said... Add Reply

Such a great post! So many memories revisited. So funny that you could almost write a very very general post of incidents and experiences and pretty much everyone would identify with one or another :)

Unknown said... Add Reply

Oh the joys of recess. We'd play hide and seek and sardines. Swings were the cool thing too.
I wish we'd have had ring pop weddings. Pure brilliance there. :)

Samantha May said... Add Reply

This was almost word for word like the recesses I had! I went to a private, Catholic school so I had recess K-8. Boy I miss those days :D

Happy Saturday!

dayebydaye said... Add Reply

Recess ended with elementary school, but it was always one of my favorite times! I loved playing with the boys, so drama didn't start until later for me too.
Fun to reminisce with you, Megan!

Grace Grits and Gardening said... Add Reply

Wow I'm impressed you remember so many of your recess memories by grade:) I loved recess and remember when it rained we stayed in the classroom and played jacks. I loved that. Great post Megan!

Bethe77 said... Add Reply

I think we all need a recess break daily. Love how you are sharing your life with us through the A to Z challenge. You write so beautifully.You are so talented.

Deb Betz said... Add Reply

In elementary school I remember playing jacks and tetherball. In middle school I have similar memories. Now working I rather read a book or magazine, or check out my emails on my phone! But my favorite thing to do on my "recess" is checking out Pinterest!!

orneryswife said... Add Reply

I don't really remember what we did at recess. I suppose we had them, but not past fourth or fifth grade. Great story about yours, though!

Unknown said... Add Reply

This brought back so many memories of shared lunches and games on the playground!

Hope you’ve enjoyed the challenge so far.
Damyanti @Daily(w)rite Co-host, A to Z Challenge 2013

Twitter: @AprilA2Z
AZ blogs on Social Media

Kinley Dane said... Add Reply

Oh man, recess was so great! I experienced all the same things as you. The playing, the weddings, the chatting. It was just so nice to get out of class. I remember tons of drama, too! It was almost a relief sometimes to go back into class :)

Hannah said... Add Reply

Oh we are so boring in England! It was just call 'playtime' haha How sad considering it was primary as well. Or simply just 'break' as we got older. We did maarbles, chess and had the weddings too! Kiss chase featured heavily on our breaks!! x

Shari said... Add Reply

I had recess through sixth grade. Playing four-square was always my favorite! :)

Grover said... Add Reply

Sounds pretty similar to my experience of recess, or as we called it 'play time'. How come recess stops once you get to a certain age though? We had play time/break all the way through school - admittedly we didn't really 'play' much as teenagers, but we still got a break from lessons. Is that different in the US?

Unknown said... Add Reply

You sure brought back a lot of memories. My daughter is in 6th grade and she is one of the girls playing 4 square with the boys because she gets sick of all the drama that happens when she hangs with the girls. LOL Awesome post!


Lady's Knight said... Add Reply

recess was the best part of school. We had hills and creeks to explore (off campus)

always up for recess in life

happy a to zing


Kieron said... Add Reply

Ahh recess. I wish I still had one sometimes.

We used to play soccer in early elementary. We'd pair off in teams that had way too many people and nobody understood what the positions were. So we'd be fighting against the other team and our own teammates for the ball.

I think my favorite used to be "Boys Chase the Girls". But now I have a daughter in kindergarten and that game doesn't sound so good anymore. Hopefully she avoids it like the plague.

Stratoz said... Add Reply

I often treat my prep period as a resource and go for a stroll and have a chat along the way.

Stratoz said... Add Reply

Hmmm, think I meant recess not resource. ;')