What Are The Main Differences Between Teaching Children And Teaching Adults?


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Will Martin Profile
Will Martin answered
Even with children there are important differences between age groups, of course; you wouldn't use the same materials or approach with eight- and thirteen-year-olds either. But if we take "children" to mean pre-adolescent and "adult" to mean over 16, the differences are very clear. The first difference, of course, is in the materials; you only have to look at a child's textbook on any subject to see that younger learners need much smaller nuggets of information, and it should be colourfully packaged to gain their attention. Children, after all, have seldom chosen to be in the classroom; yes, you can force them to study, but they won't retain much of the lesson unless they enjoy it. Adults are usually learning from choice, and are prepared to discipline themselves to some extent and accept that not all learning is fun. However, adults also benefit from a lively and varied approach, and above a very young age children can benefit from rote learning and other "dry" tasks, so the difference isn't always so great.
Gillian Smith Profile
Gillian Smith answered
The difference between teaching adults and children can be enormous for many reasons.
The world view of children and adults tends to be different because of the difference in experiences between age groups.
Adults do tend to seek further and higher education because they are motivated and not under the pressures they had as children. There is a big range of courses available for adults returning to education and not all of these are vocational.
Children can be under a lot of peer pressure, especially boys and this can hinder their progress if their friends aren't motivated.
Children have to attend school and naturally that environment isn't what everychild wants.A bad experience at school can put a child off learning and destry their faith in the education system. Some of these children may return years later to try and pick up on their education.
Adults do have a lot to offer in the way of experience and may have a lot to contribute in a learing environment.
Children not having seen so much of the world can however give a refershing  view on life as they see it!
Young adults who choose to go into sixth form tend to be motivated, especially towards continuing their education at a higher level.

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