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Recess refers to a break from work of some type. In the adult world, a break taken by courts and legislatures is called recess. School recess is a scheduled break in the structured work of the school day when children, supervised by teachers or playground supervisors, can play with their classmates and choose their own activities.

Recess is generally held outdoors; however, during inclement weather, recess can also be held indoors, either in the school gym, where children can play active games, or in the classroom, where children are allowed to choose from more quiet activities. Preschool children have time designated for outdoor play, but it is generally referred to as outdoor playtime rather than recess, perhaps because the rest of the day for the preschool ...

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