January 31, 2007
I have read that the brain can only absorb about twenty minutes of information at a time, so I have Brain Breaks in my classes every 20-25 minutes.
Depending on what I am teaching, the breaks last anywhere from two to ten minutes. The break may simply be to have students tell a neighbor something they did yesterday after school. Sometimes we go outside and run to a designated area on the playground or take a lap around our walking trail. We’ll do a short segment of an exercise video, or play one or two songs on a CD. I may read aloud from a novel for ten minutes or read one or two poems. I mix up the break activities and sometimes take suggestions from the kids or let them decide what we do. Then we get back to work.
The kids love the breaks and settle back down to work quickly. There are almost no fidgeting or off-task behaviors in my room any more, and my active kids really benefit.