Academic achievement without corresponding social development can contribute to the formation of emotional disorders. Children benefit from significant unstructured time and social mentoring. For healthy self-esteem and personality development, children need to play, fantasize and daydream.

More competitive and structured curriculum and extracurricular activities may underemphasize more complete development of empathy, cooperation, compassion, negotiation and overall social maturity. Parents can easily feel caught in the middle, knowing how hard children are being pushed, but fearing that children who don’t do it all will not be successful.

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Social interaction, development vital to child’s growth