Parents learn more from children than children learn from parents.
While children open the eyes of their parents to many things, it is a specious claim to say that they are the greater teachers. Children learn more from parents than their parents could ever learn from them.
First of all, children’s brains are undeveloped sponges and more receptive to learning than their adult parents’. Physiologically, the adult brain is less able to learn new things and more set in its ways; you cannot teach an old dog new tricks. On the other hand, children can learn new languages, do better at chess and the Game of Go, because their brains are open to learning new concepts. They can think outside the box, because “the box” has not even been built yet.
Second of all, children who have educated parents speaking with wide vocabularies are more likely to be successful and to master their native tongue. A study showing that smart children help their parents be more successful would be preposterous. For example, infants and even older children cannot teach their parents’ vocabulary at the same rate as their parents can teach them, despite being able to pepper their speech with the like, totally awesome slang of the day.
At last, we must admit that experience counts for something. There is knowledge and then there is wisdom that comes from having seen and done things. Children do not have the years of accumulated experience that their parents inevitably have. These “life lessons” are the sort of thing parents want to pass on to their children. In contrast, children are not teaching their parents not to touch the hot pan or to look both ways before crossing the road—essential bits of knowledge that most of us learn from our parents.
The nascent brains of youth are more susceptible to learning from parents and we know that early childhood education has a lasting impact on children, just as we know that essential lessons are passed from parents to children not vice versa. In summation, parents are the superior teachers in this relationship.