You are here

Who's the smartest - parents or children?

  • UK parents and their children are more likely to recognise Simon Cowell than the Queen or Prime Minister
  • Six out of ten parents admit they are confused by their children’s homework
  • Parents’ general knowledge is just ahead of an average 11 year old

Parents like to think they are cleverer than their children, but research from Dorling Kindersley – publishers of the award-winning Eyewitness Guides educational books – suggests that in some subjects the youngsters could teach their elders a thing or two.


More than 1,500 parents and children (aged eight-12 years) from across the UK were separately tested on the same set of general knowledge questions, based on national curriculum subjects. The results revealed that in some subjects children outsmarted their parents, although in others they had exactly the same level of general knowledge.


Dorling Kindersley survey results