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Should Students Have Nap Time?

Should Middle School Students Have Nap Time? The Answer is More Complicated Than You Think

Do you remember when you were younger, say pre-k or even kindergarten, you used to get nap time? Now it may seem silly, but now that we’re older and more burnt out, why did we stop? As an eighth grader, I had a realization. During PSSAs, as soon as I was done, I fell asleep so easily! And after, I felt more refreshed and ready to learn than any 10 hour sleep has prepared me for!

Kids need a rest, and a 25 minute lunch does not count. Although a 6 hour day doesn’t seem too overwhelming, it can be running on little sleep, lots of sports exercise and overwhelming work. Have you ever felt tired at work or school? Have you ever fallen asleep trying to read a book or wrap up your last tasks for the day? Has it ever been the most dreadful experience to have to wake up and get to where you need to be? Has it ever been a struggle to simply keep your eyes open? If it has, maybe this isn’t as foolish of a question as you might have thought.

Why do little kids get nap time?
To begin, why did we even get nap time when we were little? I remember fighting like my life was at stake just to not go to sleep! When you’re young, you need as much sleep as you can get for your growing bodies. Napping daily also helped boost your mood, physical health and energy level.

Why do we stop naps?
As we get older, naps actually can interfere with sleeping throughout the night. In an article by Pampers they explain, “If your child is no longer sleepy enough at bedtime because of an earlier afternoon nap, it’s a sign that the napping is negatively impacting her nighttime sleep.” Also, at a certain point, you no longer need an extra energy boost to get through the day. Eventually, children start having difficulties falling asleep. When that starts happening, kids don’t want to continue taking naps after a certain age and would rather be off doing more fun things.

If not naps, what?
Although nap time might not necessarily be the right thing for teenagers, there is definitely another way around it. Structured quiet time as a break in the middle of the day. This could be as simple as a free period where we can just relax with no devices.

Kids can choose what to do with this time, they could take a nap, they could just close their eyes or they could do some homework or studying. According to an 8th grade teacher, “I don’t think they should have a nap time, but I think they could benefit from a longer lunch. A half an hour lunch with no time for a passing period.”

Why do we need nap time, again?
As I said earlier, we all need a rest. No matter what’s on your plate there will always be stress. You could have school stress, work stress, financial stress, friends stress, family stress and so much more. So a time in the middle of the day where you don’t need to do anything seems appealing. Appropriately, in the middle of the day a break would be nice. Where you don’t have to eat, talk, study or try to solve problems. Only about 5% of the day is spent relaxing during school.

When asking a different group of 8th graders, 53% said they should have nap time, 1% said nothing at all and 46% said quiet time. The kids themselves are trying to express that they need a rest, but with everything they will have to do, some sort of rest time should be granted. When asked about a nap time for middle school students, 8th grader Madison Walters said, “I don’t believe students should have a nap period, but I believe that all students of every age shall have a ‘rest’ period, hence the amount of work we do in school, in order to balance them out. Yes!”

When asking a group of 20 teachers, 5% said they should have nap time, 10% said nothing at all and 85% said quiet time.

When asking a group of 10 parents, 20% said they should have nap time, 20% said nothing at all and 60% said quiet time. One parent of an eighth grader said, “My child always comes home tired at the end of the day, not surprisingly, and it would be nice if they could have some time to relax at school to do their work instead of coming home, doing their work and going to sleep.”

So maybe not a nap, but do you think lunch should be elongated or that a free period in the middle of the day should be added? Wouldn’t you want that? For yourself, a friend or your child? If you agree with me, comment down below and share this article with your friends! If you would like more content just like this, make sure to visit WVMSVOICE.org! If you would like to be registered for weekly emails about new articles, sign up through : https://nam10.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fforms.gle%2FjxAvR2bLbpw7SquP6&data=05%7C02%7Cs023100%40students.lmsd.org%7Cc5695e341ada498b422408dc701da958%7C9c8bb739f3a1494c917b74381f5130ec%7C0%7C0%7C638508519908381685%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C0%7C%7C%7C&sdata=5BIvRPrpJGLRfrBxKppZ2fHGSST7RhxFmKQwbJInQK0%3D&reserved=0


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