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First year of grade school sharpens kids’ attention skills

Medical X-Press – Yasmin Anwar

“The first year of elementary school markedly boosts a child’s attentiveness, according to new research from the University of California, Berkeley, and the Max Planck Institute in Germany. The study, led by the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, shows that children who transition earlier to a formal school environment learn to be more focused and less impulsive than their peers at play-based preschools. The findings are published today in the online issue of the journal Psychological Science. “These results demonstrate for the first time how environmental context shapes the development of brain mechanisms in 5-year-olds transitioning into school,” said study co-author Silvia Bunge, a UC Berkeley professor of psychology and neuroscience.”(more)

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