According to Cambridge University, formal education can be delayed until the age of seven to allow children to benefit from play-based experiences during early childhood. Children beginning formal education at the age of seven benefit both socially and educationally.
Early childhood play is an activity that benefits young children by encouraging growth in the prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain dedicated to the development of higher mental functions, a study by Cambridge University states. Children beginning their formal education at a later age maintain the ability to learn important skills, such as literacy, at the same rate as their peers. Children beginning their formal education later also maintain a more positive attitude toward learning and towards the educational experience, according to research by Cambridge University. Some states in the United States, including Missouri, do not require compulsory attendance, until the age of seven.