The children, caught between a thousand school and extracurricular activities, achieve fewer goals independently than their peers left free to spend time in less-structured activities and self-exploration, such as free play alone or with friends.
This is demonstrated by a study by Yuko Munakata of the University of Colorado at Boulder published in the journal Frontiers of Psychology. It is, the authors of the work argue, the first study that scientifically examines the question of how organized and fixed activities, such as volleyball or music or English lessons, can influence children’s neural development.
The debate on which philosophy is best to adapt to raise one’s children is increasingly heated, if that of the ” tiger mother ” that fills the week with courses and activities of all kinds, from sports to extra-curricular courses, or that of ” free-range mother ” with less anxiety and less ambition to frame and control the growth and intellectual development of their children.
US psychologists wanted to “measure” which parenting style is best for the child’s neural development. To do so they involved 70 6-year-olds asking parents to fill in a detailed diary of their children’s activities. Then they divided the children into two groups according to whether they were super-engaged in various courses and children instead of more free from extracurricular activities. They subjected the little ones to a series of cognitive tests to measure their executive autonomy in the pursuit of objectives and given that the children too pressed between courses and lessons are in the end those who “make less” in their ability to achieve goals in a way autonomous and self-managed.
Therefore, freedom of play and healthy boredom do more than many courses on the development of the child’s intelligence.