The origins of youth violence
Youth violence is a major public concern in all modern societies. To prevent this violence we need to understand how innocent young children grow into violent adolescents. Longitudinal studies of large samples of children from infancy to adulthood indicate that the peak age for physical aggression is the third year after birth. Fortunately, because of their size, physical aggression from two-year-olds does not constitute a major threat to the public. It is also providential that most children learn to control these socially disruptive behaviours before they enter school. This natural course of development suggests that the preschool years are the best window of opportunity to prevent the development of cases of chronic physical aggression. Safe streets could thus start with quality early education.
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