Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

I love words. I love writing them, I love discovering them, I love reading them. I love words. I am a lifelong learner. Whether taking classes, reading books, or doing research, I believe that you should never stop learning. But, I now must admit that even with all of my continued education I am not Smarter than a 5th Grader.

For the past week or so, my 10 year old daughter has been using a word I had never heard or seen before. I tried to figure out if she was mispronouncing a word, so I searched my mental database. I used context clues to figure out what the word may mean. Admittedly, since I understood what she meant, I dismissed it. Meaning, I didn’t spend as much time on it as maybe I should have.

Last night, she used the word again. I asked her what it meant, and just like all the times before, she said I don’t know with a nervous tremble to her voice. I once again told her that I was not familiar with this word. This time, I happened to be working. I was researching for an article I was writing. So, I paused in my research and I looked it up.


amalgamation:(n.) the action, process, or result of combining or uniting


She had been using it while describing the various textures,colors, and patterns of her latest creations on Minecraft. She also used it to describe her new Minecraft skin. Then while playing Skyrim, Elder Scrolls last night, she used it while exploring out in the wilderness somewhere. She’s been using it correctly.

I’m not really certain where she picked this word up at. She says she can’t remember. What I do know is that I’m swelling with pride. What I can tell you is that I learned something new from the most unexpected of teachers.

My ten year old taught my something I didn’t know. She taught me a new word. And, perhaps she taught you a new word, too.




6 thoughts on “Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

  1. How cool that you and your daughter are really looking at words like that! It amazes me that words we think we know, actually started out as something a little different. I hear that ‘dope’ (originally thick, healing medicine) is now ‘cool’ or awesome. Fifth grade is just so dope!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Mmm…aloof? I highly doubt that. 🙂 The fact that you think it might be a possibility will probably spur you into doing everything in your power to avoid the “aloofness”. I think the whole point is simply struggling “together”. 🙂


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