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Saturday, November 21, 2015

How Starting School at Age 7 Can Improve Concentration at 11

From Schools Improvement

November 18, 2015

Postponing school was found to dramatically improve a child’s self-control, according to Stanford University scientists who studied extensive data on Danish children.

They found a year delay reduced inattention and hyperactivity in 11-year-olds – traits associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) – by 73 per cent.

The latest findings back up other studies which claim that being able to play for longer, rather than being taught formally, improves mental health.

Professor Thomas Dee, of Stanford University, said the delay "virtually eliminated the probability that an average child at that age would have an abnormal, or higher-than-normal rating for the inattentive-hyperactive behavioural measure."

In the UK and the US, children start school aged five while that increases to six in countries, such as France and Denmark.

But some countries including Finland, Serbia or Sweden, children don’t start school until they are seven.

Researchers compared data on thousands of Danish children from a nationwide mental-health survey. They found that those who started primary school later had better self-control as they aged.

They also had ‘significantly improved’ scores on inattention and hyperactivity ratings, Professor Dee said.

Previous studies have found children and teenagers who can stay focused, sit still and pay attention longer, and fared better at school.

The study, which was carried out with the Danish National Centre for Social Research, was published in the National Bureau of Economic Research, backed those findings.

More at: How starting school at 7 can improve concentration at 11: Holding children back a year is found to reduce inattention by 73%


See more about this directly from Stanford University at: Study finds improved self-regulation in kindergartners who wait a year to enroll, or read a version of the paper made available by the university:

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