Ate knows best, and it’s backed up by science. Economists at the University of Edinburgh together with experts from the Analysis Group and from the Sydney University monitored 5,000 kids from pre-birth until they were 14 years old and found that firstborn children often scored higher in IQ tests than their younger siblings.

This was based on assessments done every two years, which included tests on reading comprehension, vocabulary, and math.

According to a World Economic Forum report, experts believe that this advantage was created by how parents’ behavior changed with the birth of each child. Firstborns often got most of the attention, and were more likely to have gone through more reading, playing, and study time, and had more disciplined rules and schedules than their younger siblings.

However, this is not to say that the panganay is often the favorite: the same study also mentioned that while behaviors of parents may change, the emotional support for each offspring remained the same.

“It doesn’t mean firstborns get more love – that stays the same. But they get more attention, especially in those important formative years,” said research leader Ana Nuevo-Chiquero. “As the household gets bigger time has to be split with younger children so they miss out on the advantage of being an ‘only child’ for a time.”

So Ate, don’t feel bad when your family’s bunso steals your limelight. At least you got the smarts.

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