Preschool study: More school, less play

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Teacher And Pupils Using Wooden Shapes In Montessori School (Photo Credit: Getty/MonkeyBusinessImages)

A new study shows that preschools may be doing a disservice to students by focusing less on academics and more on play.

The study, in the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, found that children who attended one year of “academic-oriented preschool” did better than those who attended less academic preschools.

The “academic-oriented preschool” students were about two-and-a-half months ahead in reading and math, the research found.

The findings come amid expansion of taxpayer-funded preschool in cities like Washington, San Antonio, and New York, the New York Times reported. The study will likely be used as an argument to increase spending for such programs.

But, selling the idea to parents may not be so easy.

According to the New York Times, many parents worry that academic preschools will quash their children’s love of learning.

Teachers in academic preschools still give students time to play. But it’s often in smaller chunks between lessons.

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