Volunteer in School at Recess and Lunch

We always need volunteers for lunch and recess monitors for each grade.  There is no need to sign up in advance.

You will help the school tremendously by volunteering to be a helper/monitor at lunch and recess. It would be terrific if you can come in regularly once a week, though any shifts are welcome. You also can simply drop in if you happen to have time - just plan to arrive 5-10 minutes before the time slot in order to check in with the office to sign in and get your volunteer badge/sticker (see details below, On the Day of Your Volunteering).  This is a great way to see how your children are doing in a social environment.  Consider coming when your child is not scheduled to be at lunch or recess, if that might work better for you and your child(ren).

Lunch & Recess Times, by Grade:  2018-19

These are the tentative lunch times for all grades.

Kindergarten 11:00-11:30
Grade 1 11:40– 12:10
Grade 2 11:40– 12:10
Grade 3 11:40– 12:10
Grade 4 12:50-1:20
Grade 5 12:25-12:55

Kindergarten 11:30-11:50 AND
Kindergarten 1:20-1:40
Grade 1 12:10-12:50
Grade 2 12:10-12:50
Grade 3 12:10-12:50
Grade 4 10:50-11:30
Grade 5 12:55-1:35

See below for full details about what to do, when and learn to DEBUG!

Please sign in at the front office with your driver's license and indicate that you are here as a lunch/recess volunteer.  The secretary will print out a name tag that you will wear while in the building.  When you leave, you check out and leave your name badge on the wall behind the door for next time. Make sure you fill out a raffle ticket for each slot you volunteered (1 recess = 1 ticket; 1 lunch = 1 ticket).

After checking in, proceed to the All Purpose Room (APR) and introduce yourself to a recess aid or Mrs. T-C, the Assistant Principal, so that he/she know you are there to help. If you are starting off with recess first, then go where the class is that you are assigned to (either the upper playground or the lower playground - or in the classrooms if it's inclement weather). If you have any questions about the school's policies, please contact Mrs. Tulchinsky-Cohen ([email protected]).  General questions can be emailed to us at [email protected].

Lunch volunteers:

  • Children raise their hand when they need assistance (opening those tiny ketchup bags or poking a hole in their drink containers), or need to leave their seat to get something in the cafeteria (i.e. napkin, milk, ketchup, etc) or go to the bathroom.
  • The lunchroom teachers are responsible for giving permission for the bathroom. If a child needs to use the bathroom, refer the child to the lunchroom staff. The staff tries to control how many children use the bathroom at once - too many children in the bathroom can make the hallways noisy and cause distractions for students still in class.
  • Students should not yell/scream or be so loud that overhead announcements cannot be heard.
  • Students should not run in the lunchroom.
  • If you are concerned about the behavior of a student, please alert the lunchroom staff.
  • Some older students spend a lot of time talking to friends during lunch. I sometimes give students a "5 minute warning" before lunch will end to encourage them to complete their lunch.
  • Please offer to assist all children in the cafeteria, not just those children in your child's class.
  • The students are to clean up after their own mess and dispose of the trash in the appropriate bins (garbage, recycling bin, etc.)
  • Each classroom is assigned to a lunch table. Each classroom has their own lunch bag bin where the bags will be placed at the end of lunch.
  • The students are to line up when their teacher comes in to lead them back to their classroom.

Recess volunteers:

  • Each grade has a separate playground. Please ask the staff what areas each grade is allowed to play in.
  • Some areas of the playground are "off limits" because adults are unable to easily watch children playing there.
  • If a playground ball rolls down off the school grounds, an adult needs to retrieve it.
  • If the children are arguing, do your best to help them come to consensus. 
  • Do not be afraid to start a game!
  • If a child needs to see the nurse, seek a recess aid, immediately.
  • All adults on the playground need to be identified with either staff or PTA ID.  Please send any visitors to the front office to sign-in and get a visitor sticker. Do not walk around the back of the school without checking in at the front office.
  • Students should not form "clubs" that exclude others. They need to play nicely with everyone.

Indoor recess:

During poor weather, students may not be able to have recess outside and may have to have recess inside. Your assistance will still be needed during indoor recess.


At school, the students are taught DEBUG which includes:

  1. Ignore. If that doesn't work…
  2. Move away.   If that doesn't work…
  3. Talk friendly.   If that doesn't work…
  4. Talk firmly.  If that doesn't work…
  5. Get an adult

Thus, children are responsible for the first 4 steps on their own. When a child mentions a conflict with another student, the adult should ask/say the following:

  1. Have you tried DeBug?
  2. What step are you on?
  3. Come back if you get to step 5.

 When a child has reached step 5 and needs adult help, the adult should:

  1. Send for the other child involved.
  2. Speak with the children in an encouraging manner so as to not judge anyone about his or her behavior. 
  3. Express confidence that the students can work it out.
  4. Have them discuss the following:
  • What do you want to happen?
  • How can you make that happen?


Thank you to Fallsmead PTA for the instructions and to Sligo Creek Counseling for the steps for debugging listed above. We hope that they don't mind that we copied them : )

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published this page in Volunteer 2011-08-03 22:43:20 -0400