Do children learn more quickly than adults?


There is no doubt that children can learn a language more easily than an adult but do kids learn better than adults in every aspect of learning?

There are different arguments both ways, and in fact, there is no solid proof of children being able to learn better than adults or visa versa.

Yes: Children Learn More Quickly

Some people argue that children are better learners. It is thought that kids are less afraid to take risks having less responsibilities and less vulnerability for mistakes. A child’s environment is a big motivational factor in their learning. They are at school studying many different subjects all day, playing different sports, and taking part in different extra-curricular activities. This child environment contrasts with adults who are usually focused on one subject area and are less open to different learning opportunities in their lives.

Some people believe that children are more creative, spontaneous and energetic than adults, making them better learners. Adults may be less inclined to be corrected and feel like they have learnt what they need to know in comparison to a learning toddler.

No: Adults Learn More Quickly

Other people believe that adults are better learners as they can build on their prior knowledge and experiences of the world when learning.

Adults have also learned how to learn and know what they enjoy. Enjoyment and having fun helps learning and therefore adults know better what they like.
Whilst many of the facts and figures learnt at school either get squeezed into the back of our brains or completely forgotten we hope that the ability to learn remains. Children can’t possibly remember everything their teacher has told them. They should however, be able to ask questions, explore, investigate, question their thoughts, listen and think. These are the important skills that are learnt and will be vital skills used throughout life. Indeed, one of the main aims of Primary Education is to tutor children in 'how to learn'.

Whether you are a better learner as a child or adult may purely be an individual trait and depend on your environment, personality, motivation and life experience.


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