Should there be a law for how much break time you get during the school day?


17th May 2019

SCHOOL break times have got shorter, and it’s damaging children.

Those are the findings of a study that looked at how school breaks and young people’s social lives have changed over 25 years. Data was studied from more than 1,000 primary and secondary schools.

The research showed that children aged five to seven have 45 minutes less play time each week than children of the same age in 1995, and pupils aged 11 to 16 have 65 minutes less.

Researchers also found that school kids are half as likely to meet up with friends outside school than in 2006.

Dr Ed Baines, from the UCL Institute of Education, who wrote the report, said: “Not only are break times an opportunity for children to get physical exercise – an issue of particular concern given the rise in obesity – but they provide valuable time to make friends and to develop important social skills.”

As well as having less time for breaks, the study also said nearly 60% of schools withhold breaks for poor behaviour or as time to complete work.


What do you think?

Should there be a law for how much break time you get during the school day?


Leave a Reply

mermaid14 · 2 years ago

Schools should learn to focus more on our health than academics, if it’s a law that we need to make that happen then that’s what we have to do.

nebbo13 · 2 years ago

I think that a law is a little extreme for something like breaktime, but maybe over 15min would be nice.

josh_h · 2 years ago

I say yes because children might do better in classes. If this does happen we should find better things (indoor activities) for children who don't have friends or if they don't like the game?

drduck · 2 years ago


spacegirlg · 2 years ago

Yes, school break time can wildly affect learning. One day in assessment week I only got about 5 minutes of break in one morning and made some silly mistakes in my work.

3dgar · 2 years ago

I think there should be a minimum amount of time for break times.

sloth2008 · 2 years ago

In my opinion, everyone should get the same amount of playtime at school as otherwise it is not fair.

lolteen23 · 2 years ago

Yes, because if there was a law to make breaks longer, obesity in children may decrease and children will be able to have more fun with their friends, play more games, develop their social skills and do better in lessons. If kids do not have enough time in fresh air then they will not focus properly in lessons and are likely to break more rules. It is terrible how much break time lengths have decreased.

ginnywise · 2 years ago

I only get 15 minutes of break time, and how is it that, years ago, they had 45 minutes more! So not fair! I mean, I only get 1/3 of what kids from the past got. And I thought it was evil in those days, with rulers slicing your hands, getting prodded by a long stick. But now look at them; we are writing, doing work, while they are having an extra 30 minutes.

ginnywise · 2 years ago

I don't think this is cool at all: how come they get more time to play? We're kids too, so we want to do the same.

sambrophy · 2 years ago

I say yes because breaktime is a very important priority because school can be difficult and you need time to let off steam.

natalija · 2 years ago

I think there should be a law as there are some schools that have more break time than others and it is not fair. Also, break times help children get a break from all the learning they do in lessons.

jesusrules · 2 years ago

Break time is time to relax, spend time with friends and let off a bit of steam. People work better in the classroom if they have done exercise or had time to chat to friends and relax.

123yay · 2 years ago

Yes I think there should be a law for how much breaktime you can have
As when you are kept in at break you can become restless

pandacool · 2 years ago

I think no, because I find that I have a suitable amount or break time a day, and it would interrupt lessons if there was any more.

hagrid · 2 years ago

I think there should be a law as at my primary school I got 15 minutes for break time 30 minutes to eat lunch, but I wasn't allowed to be with my friends, and 30 minutes for lunch break. Now I get 30 minutes break time but only 40 minutes at lunchtime to eat and play. We get 40 minutes to do everything you have to do at lunchtime and when you're buying food from the school canteen sometimes you can be queueing up for 10 minutes which leaves half an hour to eat and do anything else you want to do at lunchtime.

rubikspark · 2 years ago

I don't think so because the school usually decides how much break time you get.

rubikspark · 2 years ago

First to comment!!!!!!

iknow · 2 years ago

When you have break time, you get to play, exercise, make friends, get fresh air and more amazing things. If you shorten the time, you’re wasting valuable moments.

pmgk13 · 2 years ago

Children shouldn't have to miss breaktimes to catch up on work; that will just make their concentration even worse!

finbob207 · 2 years ago

No and my class would have broken it last week cos we had at least an hour and a half every day for SATS week! First to comment!

noooodles · 2 years ago

I think there should be a law about break times because with a good amount of activity and fresh air it is harder to concentrate.

my_life · 2 years ago

I find it shocking that children have 45-65 minutes less break-time than 1995. There should be a law for how much break time we get so it’s fair.

lotussk8er · 2 years ago

I think that children are getting more than enough breaktime. At most schools, they receive at least 1hr 20 minutes break, which is enough time to get work done and to play too.

oliver2008 · 2 years ago

There should be a law because children will get tired in lesson time and not want to get taught when they should be, children will also want to go to the toilet and there should be enough break time to go to the toilet as well as play and have a snack.

gabster12 · 2 years ago

In my opinion schools should Inforce a law that would make breaktimes LONGER. It is important that children stay happy and healthy and build their social skills.

lollipop33 · 2 years ago

Yes. What is wrong with meeting up with friends outside school?

( first to comment :) )

ajdp · 2 years ago

Yes because some kids get really stressed and maybe they wouldn't with more break. It also helps us perform our best in class so we don't still have energy left.

superboy42 · 2 years ago

I think we SHOULD have more playtime because it can give us time to enjoy ourselves and prepare for the next part of the school day ESPECIALLY as SATs have been going on lately.

jattsingh · 2 years ago

I hate school they ruined my birthday today

zsanaz3 · 2 years ago

There should be a law because playing helps you socialise and have fun and make up imaginative games andis just as vital as homework.

wis09 · 2 years ago

We should be aloud to have more of our own time

119c00kies · 2 years ago

I don't think that there should be a law because it is up to the school how much break we get. Some schools might have a timetable that can't have a certain length of break, so it would be easier for the school to decide according to their own timetable.

dog_lover2 · 2 years ago

I think yes because we get half an hour play and I love playing out doors and it is healthy for you so I think there should be a law.

peebi0412 · 2 years ago

Sorry, wrong poll!

#too tired ?

robin12red · 2 years ago

I think yes as play time actually helps with education by helping us to focus more and burn off some energy.?

soloseb · 2 years ago

I think there should be a law because some schools could get away with less break for children so if we had a law, we can be sure that every child gets enough break. As well as that, more break can help us learn better.

eggman · 2 years ago

45 bands in my chucu chuca hands

robin12red · 2 years ago

Also in my school we used to have a moring break, a lunch break and an afternoon break but now we only have a breack for lunch and morning. I agree totally with all the points made in other comments and I think there definaetly should be a law. I mean it is unfair that we have to sit inside and do work when in the past we would have been out side. Soz about the spelling mistake.

ppninja10 · 2 years ago

I think the law should be 15 minute break or over.

icyunicorn · 2 years ago

My answer is yes because we should be allowed to relax for more than 15 mins after working and be able to relieve lots of stress. Also, if you have too much break you could get lazy, it is important to keep active and work hard.

jamboi · 2 years ago

In order to help us in lessons we need extra break time but teachers make us go inside and learn but we would learn better if we could go outside for just a bit longer.

gamer07 · 2 years ago

Nobody wants to sit around in class all day, and not get any exercise

cookie999 · 2 years ago

I think we should have more break to relax after lessons then get your brain ready for the rest of the day.

heh · 2 years ago

I think that we should have a longer break if it will help kids focus in class better, but isn't it a bit extreme ??? if you actually turn it into a law?

bunnyboy10 · 2 years ago

Yes there should be a law because children need it and children should have a break to recover from the stress of school.

mancityfan · 2 years ago

We should actually get less breaks and lunches because we need more time to learn important life skills such as Maths and Literacy and PE
My vote was a no
We need to take more responsibility for our learning
It is serious for our later life

rosy · 2 years ago

No because the law could make playtimes shorter and no-one wants that!

avaturner · 2 years ago

I would love to have a
shorter break because my friends ask me " What shall we play ?" And I'm like I dunno ?
Also we can get on with learning quicker .

tech748 · 2 years ago

Every single child in the UK has the right to enjoy their day and be active!

scuba22 · 2 years ago

i want the longest break possible

darth_bob · 2 years ago

Yes because playtime can greatly affect children's physical and mental health and keeping them inside/not giving them enough break can affect their grades and can even cause depression.

sgadders · 2 years ago

No because if you had 30 minutes of break instead of 15 then then your lunchtime and the end of the school day will be later

pony · 2 years ago

No- different schools work in different ways!

oceangirl · 2 years ago

I have to say no because as long as you get the same academic time each day ( includes pe) then what does it matter

oceangirl · 2 years ago

But I think there should be a law that the minimum is 15 minutes of break and 45 minutes of lunch for primary and secondary schools.

chukwudi34 · 2 years ago

I agree because it says that you should be active during the day.

dripbaby07 · 2 years ago

we should get at least 20 minutes of break because we only get 15

izzylottie · 2 years ago

There should be a law of 1hour for lunch and 30min for break

mungus · 2 years ago

Yes ? because decreased time to play, have fun with your friends, physical activity is all bad for kids like us. My school only has 15 mins to play, and it's affected lots of kids. They concentrate less, and break more rules. It also brings more chances of being unhealthy, since he don't have much physical activity.

mungus · 2 years ago

It also will help kid's mental health

mungus · 2 years ago

It helps our mental health too

mungus · 2 years ago

Sorry I didn't mean to say that again

peebi0412 · 2 years ago

Personally, I think that the school should be able to decide the set amount of time for break. Yes, children deserve a break but if there’s something important going on in school, break time may have to be shortened (or lengthened depending on the situation)

stinky7 · 2 years ago

Kids should have longer breaks because I only have 10 mins

dechamp · 2 years ago


lfcrules · 2 years ago

No i think a law is a bit xtreme but over 15min would be nice

16ah02 · 1 year ago

Break times is a break from education to have a breather because its difficult for us to process without a break
In my school we have 1 hour or 2 hours of learning 15mins for break then we have 1 hour or 2 hours of learning then lunch then 1 hour or 2 hours of learning

rights123 · 1 year ago

Yes because you cant have to much break time or you will have no learning time. #lawonbreaktime

vvvv · 1 year ago

"As well as having less time for breaks, the study also said nearly 60% of schools withhold breaks for poor behaviour or as time to complete work." Happens with my school a lot- forget to bring reading recorder, homework, not enough work done, bad behaviour- are there really schools where this doesn't happen? Happens in my old school too.

lottielove · 1 year ago

Yes, I think at least 1:30 every day. My school gets 1:25.

trudie · 1 year ago

We have half an hour at our school for lunch break and fifteen mins for last break and first break lucky

news54321 · 1 year ago

All children should be entitled to break time

wireskid · 12 months ago

It is apparently damaging kids so no! Also teachers are always nagging about fresh air but don't give us enough of it!🤔

wireskid · 12 months ago

Give us more time outside!
P.S. To agree with me please put on a comment #morebreaktime

wireskid · 12 months ago


nevada · 11 months ago


nevada · 11 months ago

PLAY IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF LIFE same goes for you adults (: