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Many parents view school as the place to learn and the home as the place to play.

With parents pushing for their children to be more academically successful or ahead of the curve year-on-year, the environment provided to preschool children is more education-focused than ever before. Parents providing children with:

  • Enrichment classes
  • Additional lessons
  • Music Classes
  • Educational puzzles and tools
  • Language Tutoring

Education resources

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LARGE bundle (10 shapes, 10 colors, numbers 1-10, 1000 cards)

LARGE bundle (10 shapes, 10 colors, numbers 1-10, 1000 cards)

$35.00
Beginning Sounds - 57 Printable Worksheets - Phonics - Kindergarten

Beginning Sounds - 57 Printable Worksheets - Phonics - Kindergarten

$3.99
The Tempest Acts 1-5 Quizzes

The Tempest Acts 1-5 Quizzes

$4.00
Student Safety Plan, Emotional/ Behavioral Support, Teddy Bear Theme

Student Safety Plan, Emotional/ Behavioral Support, Teddy Bear Theme

$1.50
2 Patterns For Washable Picture Frames for 8x10 Photo Sewing Pattern And No Sew

2 Patterns For Washable Picture Frames for 8x10 Photo Sewing Pattern And No Sew

$4.00 $5.00
Reducing Fractions (Beginner) - Self-Scoring Google Forms Assessment / Homework

Reducing Fractions (Beginner) - Self-Scoring Google Forms Assessment / Homework

$0.85 $1.00
Madam Marie Curie - WebQuest & Word Search Puzzle

Madam Marie Curie - WebQuest & Word Search Puzzle

$3.00
Gustavo the Shy Ghost & Leila the Perfect Witch Bundle

Gustavo the Shy Ghost & Leila the Perfect Witch Bundle

$5.50
Biomes

Biomes

$1.49

Modern pre-schoolers play & effects

Modern pre-schoolers account for every waking hour; children have less time to be children than any previous generation by a long shot. As a society, we are pushing our children to be better, do more, and achieve greater things for every second of their day, with each minute scheduled with something educational and useful for their later life.

But with such a focus on achieving and succeeding, the actual needs of children are being put to one side to best prepare them for their future. Without the opportunity to play, develop and grow, those children who are learning math, writing, and reading at earlier and earlier ages aren’t getting the all-important life skills they need as part of their growth. Children suffer if no time in the schedule is set aside for play.

Something pediatric occupational therapist Angela Hanscom discovered with her daughter, who exceeded expectations in all academic areas but was far behind on other essential life skills, such as taking turns, sharing, and even controlling her emotions. Children who are made to focus on academic learning at too young can experience different issues due to how they are raised, including anxiety and sensory issues, as well as their independence and ability to communicate with other children.

As fewer children are given time to play, be creative, and have fun with other children, more and more cases of children struggling to cope in a preschool setting are being seen by professionals. Psychologists have suggested in the long term that focusing on academic skills over more useful life lessons can severely impact those children’s mental health. This difficulty in coping is reflected in the behavior of children now entering preschool whose whole lives have been dictated by academic success, with common effects including:

  • Inability to connect or play with other children or share with classmates
  • Difficulty in managing and controlling emotions when frustrated or upset
  • Struggling to sit or use finer motor skills effectively, including spatial awareness
  • Problems with entertaining themselves or playing alone or in groups without direct input and direction from an adult

Give children the freedom to grow

All of these behaviors and more are direct impacts of how young children are now raised. Instead of simply focusing on academic prowess, it’s important that parents also give children the freedom to grow and develop their independence. Even if that means cutting down their bus academic schedule to something more realistic, physical activity, movement, and play are all crucial ways in which children develop and learn to understand the world, and they shouldn’t be understated when it comes to turning happy toddlers into well-adjusted children.

Beyond those physical skills, though, soft skills are also ones that are vital for parents to provide to their children, beyond knowing their A-B-Cs and 1-2-3s. The ability to share, play quietly, and join in with other children is vital for success in a world where communication and socialization are necessary. Solely focusing on one element of a child’s upbringing fails to offer that balance and can have mental and physical effects later on in life.

What lessons can parents take away from the current issue with preschool development?

It’s all about striking a balance. Of course, children need to be as academically prepared as they can be, but this should be half or less of the time spent working on their development and helping your child to grow. Instead, divide your focus between the academic and softer skills, and your child is far more likely to achieve balance in their own life later on.

Especially when it comes to emotional capacity and ability to cope, offering to parents that are more than just academic is a must. For children to be well-rounded, sacrificing some extra lessons for a little more freedom isn’t optional. Do you think pre-schoolers are struggling more than ever, or do you disagree that over-education has severely impacted how children develop? Let us know in the comments below.