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A study from the University of Montreal suggests that children who get off to a good start in kindergarten are more likely to become successful later in life.
Previous research has shown that attending preschool helps boost children’s academic advantages when they enter kindergarten. In the new study, researchers looked at how developing a child’s cognitive, social, and motor skills before kindergarten can affect their long-term success.
The researchers gathered data from 2,000 children born in 1997 or 1998. They evaluated the children’s vocabulary and math skills during kindergarten. They also assessed reports from teachers describing the children’s social and emotional state in class. Then, the researchers followed up on the participants’ mental and emotional state, academic performance, and physical health in their last year in high school.
Findings showed that children who showed excellent math skills at age five were less likely to commit substance abuse or drop out of high school. They were also more successful academically.
Additionally, children who were more socially engaged during kindergarten were physically healthier toward the end of high school. The study found that they were more likely to be physically active by age 17, which reduced their chance of being overweight.
The researchers hope that through this study, people will see the significance of preparing children for kindergarten. They advised governments to implement policies that enhance children’s early skills, like providing quality childcare and promoting a safe environment at home.