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Too many activities may stunt kid's growth

UPI News Service, 10/29/2005 

Too many organized activities for young children when they are small, could be stunting their growth, a U.K. study finds.

Children who learn to speak a foreign language, play the violin or develop a backhand in tennis at the age of 2 or 3 are victims of middle-class angst, according to study by Stephen Ball and Carol Vincent of London University.

The study says that too many activities in music, art, sport, dance or drama may stunt children's creativity, independence and imagination, the Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

Time for unstructured play is vital says Jenny Aviss, the head teacher of Wetherby pre-prep in London, where Princes William and Harry began school.

"Those who are being organized to do activities all the time don't have time to live their little lives," she said. "Children who have free time to make mud pies or construct games with their friends react more freely with other children and seem to be more independent because they have been allowed to develop their skills."

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Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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