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LiiNK, which stands for Let's Inspire Innovation 'N Kids, is a project designed by Dr. Debbie Rhea of Texas Christian University. It models the Finnish school system, one of the most successful school systems in the world, where students receive four recesses and they build it into the student's daily learning schedule. Little Elm ISD is the only district in the country to have implemented LiiNK at all elementary campuses.
Studies show that frequent breaks of unstructured play time is good for the brain. Students perform better, have higher test scores, they are healthier, and teachers have seen behavior problems decrease from 60% to 28% in the classroom.
LiiNK was piloted for students in grades K-1 at Chavez, Oak Point, and Hackberry for the 2016-2017 school year. This school year, second grade was included. Brent, Lakeview, and Prestwick were rolled in with K-1. Eventually, the plan is to have it fully implemented through fifth grades at all elementary campuses.
LiiNK's success is not only attributed to the four 15-minute breaks. A Positive Action curriculum is taught first thing in the morning that compliments the project. It's a prescription to positively affect students' behaviors and academics, but offer positive character lessons each week.
Students are able to learn how to communicate with one another, become problem-solvers, productive, healthy, create positive social interactions, learn friendships, and how to be resilient.