Lunch play time can be a bit overwhelming for some children. If you can remember back to when you were at school, being accepted and being part of the group at play time was probably the most important part of your day. Students who do not feel happy at playtime almost 90 % of the time, do not feel happy at school.
While there are so many benefits to running around and exerting energy, some children can be overwhelmed by the experience. Finding the right buddies to play with can also be difficult.
Social Hangout offers students a choice, once in while, to play in a supervised social space in the school and to just hangout and chill. Social Hangout offers a number of games such as chess, twister, Uno, snakes and ladders and Chinese checkers. There are also some iPads, colouring and makerspace activities for students to choose from. The only rule for social hangout is “SOCIAL” and students are asked to choose a friend to play a game with. The hangout is supervised by the TIS counseling staff team who aim to assist students in developing social skills and friendships with other students.
There are many benefits. Students who attend find they are calmer and more regulated on the return to their classrooms. Friendships are often formed and students who initially came to hangout now feel confident with their new buddy to brave the outside playtime.
New students who are initially shy and intimidated find their way to social hangout and after a few weeks, they are prepared to join in the lunch play. Teachers commented that the hangout space has given some of their students key social strategies in playing with peers. Students learn to play a new game and learn to be part of a team.
Social Hangout is here to stay as a key social and emotional program that we can provide for all our elementary students at TIS. If you would like to find out more, please contact Student Services Head, Rovanna Bawden, TIS 2853 2300.