Panther Media GmbH/Alamy Stock Photo (kids playing tag); Dorothy Alexander/Alamy Stock Photo (playground); debate photos courtesy of families

Should Schools Ban Tag?

Tag—you’re it! For years, kids have been hearing those words on playgrounds across the U.S. But you won’t hear them at Socastee Elementary in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. That’s because the school has banned playing tag at recess. According to the school’s rules, students are forbidden from putting their hands on one another. So games like tag are not allowed.

Other schools have similar bans. Officials at these schools argue that banning tag helps prevent playground injuries. Kids playing the game sometimes fall while being chased, and a tag can become a push when kids are running at full speed.

But many people think there’s no reason to ban the popular game. They argue that playing tag is great exercise for students who spend hours a day inside a classroom. Plus, they point out, kids can get hurt doing a lot of things at recess, like playing on the swings or going down a slide.

Here’s what two of our readers think.

Tag is fun, but kids can get hurt playing it. Some injuries can be serious. My sister hit her head and got a concussion while playing tag. She had to go to the hospital and couldn’t play any sports for a week.

School is not the best place to play tag. The playground can be crowded at recess. It’s easy to crash into other students, even if they aren’t playing. There are plenty of other fun games students can play at recess that don’t involve so much pushing.  

Tag is a fun way to get exercise. That’s important because one out of every six kids and teens in the U.S. are severely overweight. But tag isn’t just about physical activity. Kids also use their brains to make quick decisions.

Tag is the perfect game for recess. You don’t need special equipment, and you can play it just about anywhere. There’s always time for a game, no matter how short recess is. Plus, there’s no limit to the number of players, so no one has to be left out of the fun.

What do you think?
Should schools ban tag?
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