A large part of why parents choose to send their children to school is for the social education and skills they gain when they attend. Being around and interacting with other children of their age and learning to follow classroom rules are an important part of a child’s upbringing and education.
For those who are only children or whose siblings are much older or younger, this can be a completely new venture. Often, this begins at playtimes. There is a short fifteen-minute break in the morning and a longer break of around an hour for lunchtime where the children can play. For infants, there is an added afternoon break, as their attention span is shorter and they require more downtime than the junior children.
Playtime is important for several reasons: physical activity, stimulation, health, cognitive learning, happiness, and downtime from classroom learning. Playtime doesn’t necessarily mean children aren’t learning though. Engagement with other children and learning to play and share are all important roles in the development of their brains and their behavior.
Regular breaks are also integral to the processing of information. Focus time in children can be as short as 20 minutes, so breaks, playtime, and time to simply move around or have a snack are important so that information has a chance to stick in their minds. They can then recharge and enter the classroom again, ready for learning. Primary schools make sure that play areas, lunch areas, and learning areas are separate, so children can compartmentalize each part of the school.