Back to Betty’s original questions about choosing and supervising games. In first and second grades we usually let the students take turns choosing the games. We will often specify if it should be an indoor or outdoor game. However, I’ve noticed that the game repertoire has shrunk over the years. Second graders are picking games that they learned about in first grade and then the next year’s second graders pick from those games and the variety lessens. So we teachers will step in and introduce games we haven’t played yet. Do we play with the students? It depends on the game. They are always supervised and I like to play with them as much as possible. However, for some games such as Kick the Can it is easier to keep tabs on the game if I am not off hiding somewhere. And as much as possible I like students to set up their own game equipment.
In the older grades, softball is the chosen main recess game during warmer weather. Everyone takes for granted they will be playing softball if the field is playable. For other recess games I think the teachers often let students take turns choosing games. At times they’ve had students write a game selection on a slip of paper and collected them in a jar. The teacher may also include a few games if she is wishing for variety. (They may have had two jars, and indoor jar and an outdoor jar.) Then a slip of paper is pulled each day to designate the game that will be played. This has helped cut down on peer pressure towards or against certain games.