‘Growing up is a trap’, might well be one of the millennium’s overused phrases.
But if you’re an adult in 2018, you’ll understand that adulting is tedious, that it’d take this constant reminder to the universe to convey how challenging growing up gets.
Once, in secondary school, I remember an adult talking to me and saying something about how lucky I was being young because I could study better. Of course, I was not convinced. I was focused on growing up and becoming an adult and the unflattering words of a mere adult weren’t going to faze me.
But little did I know, I was walking into what is yet, the most demanding, tasking and complicated level of my life.
Growing up, I was a smart kid. I knew this, but not every other person. I hadn’t put in so much effort into studying in junior secondary school. My mother didn’t give up on me though. She knew I was brilliant and kept encouraging me. She’d recommend Ben Carson’s Think Big (which happens to be my favourite Carson book) and Gifted Hands.
In the few months before starting senior secondary school, I’d decide to try harder after reading my mother’s copies of the two Carson’s books.
By my first term in senior class, I’d surprise everyone and top my class. While some might think it took a lot of classical work. It really didn’t. I just read some more and paid more attention during class.
It was a lot easier studying then. These days studying is more challenging than I remember. And this has nothing to do with laziness, I’ve discovered there’s a science to learning connecting to age.
According to BBC Health, in an article titled, ‘Why the young learn more easily’, explain a 2006 research on the basis of learning.
In explaining the science of learning after a series of experiments, lead researcher, Dr Nigel Emptage, will say,
“It might be the case that this is the reason infants are so able to store new information, such as language.
“But later in life, remembering things proves harder. That might be because the way we have to store information is fundamentally different, using parts of the system that have been used already.”
In explaining, it is evident that the brain of an adult and infant work differently. While according to Spanish Workshop for Children attributes the easy learning of bilingual languages by kids to their brain structure, it is in fact true.
A child’s brain is structured to absorb information. This is why kids are termed ‘fast learners’ because they pick up habits, words, and gestures very quickly without filters. The difference between adult learning and that of a child is therefore consciousness.
Kids learn unconsciously while adults do so consciously. This means that for a kid learning new things comes almost naturally and therefore is easier. Adults, however, know they are going through learning and this results in missing out elements during the learning process.
Quora user, Chelle Gordon, explains this concept as saying,
”According to an academic paper by University of Washington, “Neuroplasticity has a clear age-dependent determinant.” That means that yes, kids really learn easier. Their brains are developing, and so they are building billions of connections…”
Very unlike an adult brain.
I miss having nothing to worry over other than why I haven’t washed my school uniform or updated my Government notebook.
May I reinstate that growing up is a trap but also an interesting process. I might never be the bright student I used to be six years ago but learning real-life experiences is something that adult life comprises of.
So no, I do envy childhood, I am content with my growing process. Education will come and go, learning will remain continuous and as we get older, assimilating during the learning process might get more challenging but life happens.
While I would not trade growing up with my childhood, however, some days I remember how easy it was to learn and I sigh. I really do mourn the student I once was.
Poultry Podcast anchors, question the level of Nigerian females in the midst of the global shake by women fighting gender pay-gaps, sexual misconduct against them and equality:
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Image Credits: Nigerian girls, Millenium Magazine