We all want to help students succeed!

Have you ever thought about how important recess is for their future?

We believe that EVERY kid deserves a Rock Star Recess EVERY day.  

What does that mean?


Safe and healthy play teaches valuable life lessons that they use on the playground, in the classroom and beyond; like…



93% of school staff report an INCREASE in students' level of cooperation with others in the classroom after a year of safe healthy play during recess.*
* 2015 Playworks Annual Survey


Try Music Monday by having students create teams with the GUITAR/ DRUMS count off: Each player yells “GUITAR”, “DRUMS”, “GUITAR”, “DRUMS” until everyone is on a team.  Then have them play their air instruments while they find their band.  Everyone plays and feels like they are part of something fun!



By helping all kids to be active at recess, teachers recover on average 21 hours of classroom time transitioning from recess to learning.*
* Mathematica Policy Research 2013

  • Tell all of the students to imagine they are a famous band that has to get from their limo to the stage for their big opening night concert.
  • Have all the students walk in place while you describe the trip they are taking. Occasionally have the students run away from screaming fans or duck under scaffolding, high-five roadies. Maybe they're signing autographs as they walk down the halls.
  • Shout “one minute to show time” and ask everyone to speed up. Soon the class is jogging in place.
  • Suddenly someone yells "places" and everyone hits their favorite rock star pose.
  • Someone counts off (1,2,3,4), the curtain goes up and now it's time to rock. Encourage your students to sing/dance, play air drums or air guitar, whatever they feel like doing.
  • After the students are winded, slow them down again and tell them to take a big bow, towel off and give each other high fives and fist bumps for a great performance.


84% of school staff saw a DECREASE in conflicts which arose during recess, spilling into the classroom. They also observed a decrease in the amount of class time spent to resolve those conflicts, once kids learned good conflict resolution skills during safe and healthy recess..*
* 2015 Playworks Annual Survey

Activity: RO SHAM BO

Help your students to rock n’ roll by teaching all of them to use Ro Sham Bo when a conflict arises.  It is easy, simply teach students ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS – a fist is a ROCK, a flat hand is PAPER and the index and middle finger make the ends of SCISSORS.  

Each student says Ro Sham Bo and then, on Bo, picks one of the three things to show with their hand: ROCK beats Scissors.  PAPER covers Rock. SCISSORS cut Paper.   Whichever student succeeds at the game, wins the dispute and everyone gets back to playing quickly and peacefully. 



78% of school staff said that safe and healthy recess helps students develop necessary skills succeed in their classroom and their community.*
* 2015 Playworks Annual Survey

  • A Rock Star goes nowhere alone! Choose a volunteer to help you, and     demonstrate how to move and be a shadow, emphasizing the importance of awareness and avoiding physical contact with your     partner and others.
  • Tell the students that the Rock Star shadow is supposed to do everything the Rock Star does, without running into him/her.
  • Identify what type of movement is possible (walking, fast walking, running, skipping, hopping, leaping, crawling, air guitar, drums, singing, dancing etc). The funnier the movements the better.
  • Tell the students to ROCK ON to begin moving around the play area.
  • Then say STOP THE MUSIC to stop moving.
  • CHANGE KEYS, will signal students to switch roles after one minute so both sides have the chance to lead.


By including safe and healthy play every day, 80% of staff reported a positive impact on creating safe and effective learning environment.*
* 2015 Playworks Annual Survey

Activity: Recess rules are positive, simple and clear
  • Create 3-6 simple and positive rules; for example, instead of “Don’t push,” tell students what they can do – e.g., “Use light butterfly tags.”
  • Discuss with all students and staff so they are aware of and follow the same rules. A poster of the recess rules called The Set List is displayed where everyone can see it at recess.
  • Consequences are responsive, respectful and related. When rules are broken, recess staff discuss the bad behavior with the student and encourage him/her to think about what s/he did wrong and how to correct it.

It all starts on the playground. Make your recess a Rock Star Recess and you will see how safe and healthy play helps your students perform at their best.

Want all of these fun exercises to practice
at your school?

Download your free Rock Star Recess poster and teacher guide