How brain breaks are implemented at IHS


Suhas Konijeti

According to Student Stress Statistics, 75% of U.S. high school students expressed boredom, anger, sadness, fear, or stress while in school. The Society for Research in Child Development states these negative emotions can cause poor school performances.

Recognizing this, the Spanish Department at Independence High School (IHS) includes Brain Breaks during class time to stay energized and motivated. Brain breaks can be as simple as resting your head or exercising your body in order to wake up and get your blood flowing. 

“When I notice my students falling asleep or being disengaged I try to do something to wake them up to get them refocused and reenergized,” said Allison Donaldson, IHS Spanish I & II teacher.

Breaks are an important aspect of learning; both students and teachers benefit from unstructured breaks that further emphasize stress relief.

Brain breaks help us stay energized so we can keep on working,” freshman Aadath Gakanat said. “Especially towards the end of class, it gets hard to focus and brain breaks are great for that.” 

For Special Education students, breaks are incorporated into their schedule, as it is ideal that they have time to rest during a full day of learning. 

“After the kids do their stations they have a break where they can rest their heads, have a snack, or play a game,” said Maxi Aide, IHS special education teacher.

One Special Education teacher aide talks about the value of breaks for her students.

“Breaks give them time to refocus,” said Aide. “Sometimes, learning a hard task can be frustrating for them. They are able to take a minute to rest, and then when they’ve had some opportunities to relax they can have an easier time completing their work.” Some Brain breaks that you might find interesting are card tricks and drawing, these forms of brain breaks can also include playing quiet games and activities such as Simon Says, I Spy, or Would you Rather?