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Should playing tag in the playground be banned in Primary Schools?

A primary school headteacher has introduced a “gentle hands” playground policy where children are banned from playing tag.

Joanne Smith, head of Rudyard Kipling Primary School in Brighton, has also banned pupils from engaging in any “physical” games. Instead, they are being encouraged to hold hands or clap with each other while in the playground.

But the policy has sparked a backlash among parents who have called for it to be axed as they say their children are left feeling bored during break time.

Mrs Smith explained to parents: “To clarify, ‘Gentle Hands’ does not mean ‘no touching.’ The children are of course allowed to hold hands or play clapping games with a friend should they wish to. Gentle Hands simply means playing games outside that do not need to be physical.”

The mother of a ten-year-old pupil said that the policy is “completely backwards”, adding: “Sometimes, I don’t even know what planet Brighton is on.

“They’re banning children from playing tag – why on earth would anyone think tag is a bad thing? I’m going to teach my son about another game instead, that’ll really scare the snowflake headteacher – kiss-chase.”

It is the latest controversy that the school has found itself at the centre of. Earlier this year, parents launched a petition against plans to demolish the boys’ toilets convert the girls’ into “gender neutral” facilities.

The school said that there have been a few incidents in recent months involving “rough play” and “play fighting” that have made children upset.

The “gentle hands” policy simply means playing games that are not “overly physical and risk hurting or upsetting other children”, they said.

What are your views? Did you play tag at school? Should this policy be extended to other schools? Or is this overprotection of children? 

Should playing tag in the playground be banned?

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Catton
2 days ago
0
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people have gone mad !!!!!!
sparrer
25th Nov 2019
0
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After I'd laughed at the question I realised it was serious! All I can say, seriously, is when is this woman going to be hauled in front of the Ed Authority for at the least an admonishment, and training in the physical education of children?
Plummers
25th Nov 2019
0
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Kids need to run and play at break times. I believe that skipping ropes aren't allowed in lots of schools either. Fall over playing tag or trip over a rope while skipping...so what? Get back up and carry on. I wonder if they're banning Sports day too! That's the only time I saw anybody get really hurt: high jumping!
thetruth67
22nd Nov 2019
1
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The Head Teacher is imposing her PC snowflake principles on all the children, so no choice then.
The backlash from parents shows that they are not in agreement.
Perhaps the authorities can build safe space schools as a pilot scheme.
Alicia
22nd Nov 2019
1
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You could wrap the kids in cotton wool but one day they will have to face the big, bad world.
FionaR9
21st Nov 2019
0
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Despite receiving a broken ankle whilst playing tag at school, it was considered a part of growing up to get cuts, bumps and scrapes and considered normal. I suppose in today’s culture my parents would have promptly sued the school or the parents of the girl who pushed me over but litigation was virtually unheard of back in the 60’s however we learnt to take part in fun and games despite the odd injury.
Felix1
17th Nov 2019
3
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Big brother gone mad. We had great fun playing tag as kids, both at home unsupervised or as part of our games curriculum.
Yodama
16th Nov 2019
3
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Bring on the race of automatons, no laffin', no playin', no nuffin.' a good obedient race with no character.
GeraldineM46
15th Nov 2019
3
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Why spoil the children's fun, they learn better that way and get some exercise.
joan 47
14th Nov 2019
3
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we must let children play ,and be children.
johnboy68
14th Nov 2019
3
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is this country going mad please let children be children my granddaughter loves playing outside mixing with the other children she is 8 years old and get playing with others so please let them play games its stop kids beening bullied let them make friends
M4lcolm
14th Nov 2019
3
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Children need to learn (1) to cope in a life that is rough and tumble and (2) boundaries to their behaviour - so gentle admonishment if they get overexcited and too rough. I don't know anyone who has been left emotionally scarred by the games of tag they played when we were children!
Heather04
13th Nov 2019
3
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Part and parcel of growing up ,let children be children .
sueharbottle
13th Nov 2019
2
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This is ridiculous, children need to run around and let off steam. If the playground is properly supervised any behaviour that is deemed too rough can be picked up and dealt with. Every child should learn what is and what is not acceptable behaviour.
jeffsoo
13th Nov 2019
4
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Should playing tag in the playground be banned?

Who on Earth thought of this one, does it ever surprise you how the human race has survived so long.
copper beeches
12th Nov 2019
5
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Oh, for goodness sake! The word "playground "
means exactly that, a ground or place to play.
After the routine of the classroom it is necessary for children to relax or let off steam at break time.
Of course you will get upsets and minor falls etc.
This is all a part of growing up. Is the head teacher not aware that children have to be exposed to all kinds of situations, (but not terribly dangerous things) in order to survive in this world.
If they are wrapped in cotton wool they will grow up thinking that the world is a wonderful place and as adults will be exposed to all kinds of things that they should have been made aware of
both at school and at home in their formative years. Don't play in the dirt, you will catch germs,
Don't play tag, one of you may get upset or even
hurt. Don't play conkers, one may fly off the string and blind you. Don't play with tinsel it may strangle you. Don't ride that bike, you may fall off.
Don't cross the road you may be run over. Just explain to them what could happen and, within reason, let them decide for themselves.
They will then grow up being aware of dangers, but not afraid of them. Please, please let our children be children.
BarbaraS468
11th Nov 2019
2
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Children today need to be taught more playground games. We never had things provided for us in the playground, we made our own entertainment. We had different times of the year for different things e.g. Springtime was always 'skipping time' and marbles. Summer was more gentle games like the Alley Alley Oh and 'What's the time Mr Fox'. Autumn was 'conkers' and in the winter we made slides in the snow and ice in the playground.

We never worries about falling over and hurting ourselves. We just got on with playing.
Margret
11th Nov 2019
2
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Of course not please for goodness sake let our children have some good honest fun in there lives.
NandiH
11th Nov 2019
1
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Oh dear what next ,such a stupid idea, they are breeding a lot of softies with no get and go, bring back all the old play ground games we used to play skipping ball games hop scotch I could go on, we learnt to share and win and loose these young people will never learn that life is full of win some loose some and sometimes you get hurt in the process but you get up and carry ontrying harder next time.
Joan14
11th Nov 2019
2
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I think our world is going completely mad!!!!
AlisonP24
11th Nov 2019
3
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Ridiculous, what is wrong with running around,I thought kids needed more physical activity these days not less. So agree with your comments LornaT13.
LornaT13
11th Nov 2019
7
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Words fail me!! I just dread the thought of what type of people these children will grow up to become - will our armed forced die out as a result of soldiers not being allowed to fight in case they get hurt?? What about professional sports such as rugby and football? These would surely disappear as well because nobody will be allowed to make physical contact - bit of a problem in contact sports, particularly rugby! But then this school is in Brighton so be can only guess at what the head teacher actually "identifies" as hence the snowflake mentality. Such teachers should not be allowed to teach let alone run a school - what they are doing is called "indoctrination" and we all know how dangerous that is in today's modern diverse society... just let kids be kids and they might have a chance of growing into half decent adults.
Wipeout
11th Nov 2019
3
Thanks for voting!
What is going on with the the school authorities now a days?... Yeah Tag, Kiss Chase, British Bulldog , all of these should be encouraged not banned. We may as well send our children to school in bubble wrap or equivalent ( bubble wrap is plastic... not PC ) I despair for my grandchildren who will not be aloud to play at all at this rate.
Yagala
11th Nov 2019
5
Thanks for voting!
Why this silly 2question is put onto the public, I really do not know.
I played tag when I was a little boy and my father was pleased because I got rid that way of a lot of extra stamina, which I am now missing at 80.
I rather see the youngsters run around instead of buying their noses into some silly game on the computer.
Bigfan
11th Nov 2019
5
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Things are getting tok politically correct, the kids need to play rough and tumble games ,life's not always easy!!
Retiredyorkie
11th Nov 2019
5
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Anything else they would like to ban.

The powers that be moan that children do not get enough exercise and some snowflake in education is now banning tag in the playground.

Come on start being realistic.
Yodama
11th Nov 2019
5
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It is probably the fear of lawsuits for every little thing that happens in the playground that is driving this.
It is the culture of suing that has brought about all these ridiculous PC rules and regulations . Schools are protecting themselves.

teachers feeling paralysed. They are trying to teach while walking on eggshells..
The victims of the greedy parents who want to make a quick few bucks, are their very own children.
Even children are threatening to sue their teachers.
I really love children, couldn't eat a whole one though!

Someone should get a grip on these frivolous lawsuits.

On the other hand, it may be another small step in the implementation of a controlled society.
LanceFogg
11th Nov 2019
4
Thanks for voting!
I think it's all been said although there is a 5% who think it's OK to stop these kids playing tag. What planet are they on???
This headmistress is just another example of these pathetic individuals who haven't a clue how the real world works.
It's about time these "snowflakes" melted away and let us get on with life instead of indoctrinating us, particularly our children, with absurd notions that physical activity is potential harmful.
I look back at my life and probably some of the most enjoyable times were when I played in the playground, went messing about in streams, ditches, hedgerows and woods at weekends, learnt and then spent several years playing rugby and later on colliding with walls and opponents playing squash.
I'm still intact and respect everyone I meet so it doesn't look as if I or any of my friends came to any harm.
Grandma38
11th Nov 2019
3
Thanks for voting!
The worlds gone mad. We played tag, hopscotch skipping all good exercise after doing lessons. The children have to let their hair down sometime, plus the fact that the media is full of articles that children do not get enough exercise well this in my book is getting that exercise.
PaulineA81
11th Nov 2019
3
Thanks for voting!
Playtime is for the children to let off steam i.e. to run around and use up extra energy before going back into class.

In a time when children are being encouraged to excercise more instead of playing on computer games this head teacher should be encouraging them instead of banning them from running around.

We played tag all the time in playtime at school. It did us no harm and we thoroughly enjoyed it.

It's time to stopped mollycoddling children and let them act like children. They are being made to grow up too soon these days.
Margaret Hart
11th Nov 2019
4
Thanks for voting!
When will teachers and others realise that children are not made of cotton wool? They may even be better behaved if they get the chance to burn off some energy in the playground.
As for the gender neutral toilets I am appalled they will have to learn all about the new ways of living soon enough so for the moment just let them be normal children.
Billythequiche
11th Nov 2019
7
Thanks for voting!
Please, please, someone shout ENOUGH! We happily subject kids to political indoctrination and gender uncertainties; we tell them that it is OK. to take time off school to demonstrate but apply penalties if the parents financial circumstances force time off for a holiday; we tell them it is OK to fail and being competitive is wrong; but the slightest hint of minor physical harm has people swooning. Or is it the fear of litigation? What Next? Contactless rugby, football with no tackling, cricket with a foam ball?
Yes, I know it was different for us baby boomers, physical risk was small potatoes agains a recent war but common sense please.
At primary school we had a version called "trench tag" Around he main playground was a walkway several feet deep. To escape a near tag you could leap into the trench but had to stay for ten seconds before rejoining. Cuts, scrapes, bruises, bloody noses and dislocated fingers were born with pride. It must be a shock when school leavers enter the world of reality. What will the next generation of armed forces be like. Still, they WILL have vegan boots.
Mary Lincoln
11th Nov 2019
5
Thanks for voting!
We are becoming a nanny state. Let our children learn from each other be it rough and tough that's how life is.Does this head teacher think that all problems will be solved by holding hands and clapping? We need our children to grew up strong and independent, it's a hard life out there, don't turn them into sissy's.
MichaelB14
11th Nov 2019
0
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Primary school is where children begin to learn 'boundaries' of what is acceptable behaviour, and there are consequences to behaving badly it may sort out those with bullying tendencies, early.
ElisabethR
11th Nov 2019
6
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For goodness sake! What is this teacher thinking of? No wonder parents are up in arms?
Ps....hasn't she heard? Oxford student union have banned clapping because it may cause anxiety!!! Lol
Difficult to take this seriously.
bob scott
11th Nov 2019
4
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No! What is I when the skills of contact with another is ban, what with conkers ban, what next skipping ropes could be very dangerous, but sense prevails as a natural clear space automatically made. Children are no ment to lay in space suits for protection, I was always taught to stand on one's own two feet. Bob.
AnneS233
11th Nov 2019
5
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When a baby learns to walk you make areas safe ie no obstacles in their way. But you can’t rearrange everything as they have to learn to live with them. So it is with children’s games. Let them have their childhood for goodness sake. It’s the only way they learn.
Wilf
11th Nov 2019
7
Thanks for voting!
This is all getting a bit silly. We used to love tag and British Bulldog at school. Hours of fun in the playground and playing fields back in the 60s. We didn't know it then but it was also good health exercise in all weathers and good "sport". Life it self is dangerous-just getting up in the morning and driving a car. Lets get real and let the kids exercise and enjoy themselves.
Gardenmad
11th Nov 2019
5
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Surely the point is that 'tag' or 'it' as we used to call it gets rid of kids' excessive energy and gives them much needed exercise. The teachers will have problems with hyper-active kids in the classroom, and we will be seeing more overweight kids if this type of nonsense is introduced.
Ian123
11th Nov 2019
5
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The views of the few effecting the lives of the many.
Absolutely pathetic.
It appears that all physical inter reaction between children will be banned.
Going back many years we used to play British Bulldog, ( No doubt I will be classed as a racist by those with vested interests for using such a term, )
This involved making your way across the playground without being tagged.
Those tagged would chase those I tagged until finally you would have a group of excited children chasing the final child who hadn’t been tagged.
Did us no harm.
This headteacher May be a secret football coach.
Watching the Premier League on TV I am regularly nonplussed by the sight of these examples of masculinity throwing themselves to the ground, screaming and their faces contorted in imagined agony and doing a few roll overs when they have nearly come into physical contact with an opponent.
Perhaps children should be mildly sedated before school to ensure that physical injury is kept to a minimum.
Let’s not forget that Political Correctness is a booming industry.
MaryP84
11th Nov 2019
4
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It's getting out of hand now with this PC brigade trying to stop children enjoying themselves.
skippysdad
11th Nov 2019
1
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perhaps need bigger play grounds, in any group of children some are going to be a lot bigger than others which will leave smaller children unprotected. could easily be knocked over in a rush.
perhaps such games need to be supervised better,
SusanneJ5
11th Nov 2019
8
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I dread to think of how the next generation will turn out, will they manage to surive in difficult conditions? Kids have always had scrapes, it is what makes them stronger to cope with lifes ups and downs. We should not keep wrapping them in cotton wool. Ridiculous.
Suefor
11th Nov 2019
8
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Fighting In the playground should be stopped but playing tag! No wonder there are children with weight problems, for some of them running and playing in the playground is the only exercise they get. It helps them learn team work, working together and how to lose with grace. If they do not like the ‘rougher’ type of games they can go to another part of the playground with other children who do not want to join in and play quieter games. What they should be teaching them is that everyone does not want to do the same things and that, that is ok. Don’t bully them into taking part but all get together for a quieter activity at another time. Teach them that we are not/do not want to do the same things together all the time. Head teachers like this should receive re-education on learning how to get on with each other.
Ratz
11th Nov 2019
5
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My biggest worry here is that this person is a head teacher, did she have a bad school experience or is she one of these sad snowflake/ pc brigade that want to remove any form of enjoyment for children? Sorry but you madam are so wrong on this subject , how can the education authorities agree to this? Someone said kids play kiss & catch, how about doctors /nurses and patient? Bet that would go down a storm? Sad times we live in nowadays
MarianG
11th Nov 2019
6
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Children have played tag (we called it 'tig') for years. I have never heard of bairns being harmed by it.
Nannypink
11th Nov 2019
5
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Yet another silly decision !
PatriciaC28
11th Nov 2019
4
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I have never heard such rubbish !!!! This is the problem that we face today where children are restricted in their play activities, Bring back all the old fashioned tried and tested fun and games that never caused any harm,
MrsPat
11th Nov 2019
-3
Thanks for voting!
Not all kids want to run about and some could get hurt so it may be a good idea at least in school hours. My brother had both knees badly scared when he fell over on a tarmac playground in primary school.
Marley444
11th Nov 2019
11
Thanks for voting!
I think the world has gone bonkers! Playing 'it' as we called it is all part of growing up and having fun! Children have run around in the playground at school for as long as I can remember, We are in danger of encouraging 'snowflake' children who will melt and fade at the slightest touch. Children need to exercise and run around at break time. This sort of play should be encouraged - not discouraged!

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