Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?

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Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?
Created byMark Burnett
Original workAre You Smarter than a 5th Grader? (American game show)
OwnerMGM Television
Films and television
Television seriesAre You Smarter than a 5th Grader? (see international versions)
GenreGame show
First aired27 February 2007; 16 years ago (2007-02-27)

Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? was a game show franchise, that was co-created, and produced, by Mark Burnett, based on the game created by Howard Stern, for The Howard Stern Show. Adult contestants answer questions, as if they came from an elementary grade school quiz. The original U.S. version debuted on the Fox Broadcasting network on February 27, 2007, with host Jeff Foxworthy, airing on Fox until 2009, as a syndicated TV series, between 2009 and 2011, and then revived on Fox in 2015, and again on Nickelodeon in 2019, with new host, John Cena. The Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? format, has since been replicated in several other countries, some versions under the same title, and some under modified ones.

In 2013, the show appeared in TV Guide's list of the 60 greatest game shows ever.[1]


Each game is played by a single contestant, who earns money incrementally, based on a payout ladder, by answering simple trivia questions, with the game themed as a school quiz. The following description of the show, is based primarily on the U.S. version, of Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?, though the general format applies to all international versions.

The game relies on the premise, that an adult would not know the information, generally, taught in elementary grade school, because it is rarely used in adult life, by the type of person chosen to be a contestant.[2] Therefore, the show is essentially a test to see how much an adult has retained since graduating elementary school. The show also derives its humor by occasionally displaying the contestant's educational attainment, implying that in spite of that, they struggle to answer some questions.

The contestant is presented and chooses from a set of subjects and grade level question topics in any order they like, usually ten in most versions, with one or two subjects for each grade level. Each question is presented as either a multiple choice question of three answers, a true-or-false question, or a short-answered question, in which a contestant must answer it correctly in order to progress on to the next question. Throughout the game, the contestant can choose to "drop out of school" and leave with the current accumulated winnings won up to that point. If the contestant gets it incorrect, unless the student has the correct answer via a "Save" (see below), he or she "flunk out" and the contestant leaves the game either with nothing or the amount of money from the last threshold level they passed (in the Taiwanese version, the contestant's winnings are cut by half instead, as the version neither have a guaranteed sum not have an option to leave the game).

During the game, the contestant also chooses one of the five students from the classroom who will assist the contestant on two questions. The contestant is also presented with two "cheats" and a "save" that may only be used once throughout a game to help them on their way:

  • Peek: The contestant is shown their classmate's answer, and may use it or give a different one. When this cheat is used, the contestant may not "drop out" on the current question.
  • Copy: The contestant is locked into using their classmate's answer, without being able to see it first. The classmate must provide the correct answer in order for the contestant to advance to the next stage; otherwise, the contestant flunks out. When this cheat is used in the 2015 revival, the classmate is allowed to discuss his/her answer with the other fifth graders and change it if desired.
  • Save: If the contestant misses a question and the classmate has answered correctly, the contestant is credited with a correct answer and allowed to continue in the game. The contestant cannot choose to use the Save; it is automatically deployed on their first miss. If the classmate has also missed the question, the contestant flunks out. By using the Peek first, a contestant could have two possible answers to a question – their own, then the classmate's with the Save if needed.

Once all three forms of assistance are used or the tenth question is answered correctly, whichever comes first, the classmates must return to the tables and take no further active role in the game.

Each correct answer moves the contestant up a payout ladder (the question value determines the difficulty, regardless of grade level), and by completing the first set of ten questions the contestant is offered a final, bonus question worth the grand prize from the highest primary school grade level (for example, fifth-grade in the American version or sixth-grade in the 2015 revival). The subject is given to the contestant but not the question, then a decision must be made either by ending the game or risking their winnings and continue playing. Once the contestant decides to go on, the question is then presented and they must answer it. They can't "drop out" or receive any assistance from the classmates. A correct answer wins the contestant the grand prize that varies from country to country. At the end of the game, the contestant must confess to the camera whether they are "smarter than a 5th grader", based on whether they have won the grand prize.

Other formats[edit]

The American version also has two different variations of the game, each providing a different gameplay format from the original and offered a lower grand prize due to the variations' budgets.

Syndicated version[edit]

The syndicated version featured a reduced grand prize of $250,000 with a revised game format; unlike the original game format, the contestant must attempt to correctly answer up to ten questions with correct answers earning a certain cash value proportional to the difficulty (first-grade questions are worth the lowest amount, and fifth-grade being the highest). A correct answer earns the contestant the amount it's worth, while an incorrect answer takes their winnings back to zero. The contestant may not "drop out" until they get to the final question, where they choose to leave the game or risk all their winnings to answer one final fifth-grade bonus question; a correct answer multiplies their current winnings by ten while a miss forfeits all of their winnings and they leave instead with nothing or a $2,500 prepaid credit card if they took at least $2,500 to the final question. The cheats are retained from the original version and can still be used until the tenth question. A contestant must answer all eleven questions to win the $250,000.

When the syndicated version was revived for a second season, three changes were made. The main fifth-grade questions are removed, and the only one from that grade was the bonus question. Contestants must start at the first grade and cannot skip a grade. At least one question from each grade must be answered or have used a cheat on, 1 to 3, before they can roam the board freely. The "Save" has been removed.

Nickelodeon version[edit]

The 2019 Nickelodeon version also featured a different game format and a prize of up to $100,000. The format was split into two rounds: in round one, contestants answered six questions from the first four grades (one question from the first two grades, and two from the next two grades), with a possible maximum of $10,000. In round two, the contestant was given 60 seconds to correctly answer as many as five fifth-grade questions; each correct answers increase the multiplier by one; answering all five questions correctly for the round multiplies the round one winnings by ten.

The contestants are still given two cheats to use during the first round; the "Save" is instead replaced with a final cheat (usable on the second round) where the contestant may discuss with the classmate for the answer without a time limit.

International versions[edit]

The show has spawned many versions around the world:

  Currently airing   No longer airing

Country Name Host Channel Air Date
 Albania Të gjithë për një Eno Popi Top Channel October 2016
 Argentina ¿Sabés más que un chico de 5to grado? Andrea Frigerio and Pablo Granados América (Channel 2) July 9, 2007
 Australia Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?[3] Rove McManus Network Ten September 26, 2007 – October 30, 2009
 Austria Dreizehn Christian Clerici ORF1 September 27, 2007
 Belgium Slimmer Dan Een Kind Van 10? Goedele Liekens VT4 September 6, 2007
Êtes-vous plus malin qu'un enfant de primaire ? Alain Simons RTL-TVI September 6, 2007
 Brazil Você é Mais Esperto Que um Aluno da Quinta Série?[4] Silvio Santos SBT September 23, 2007
 Bulgaria Това го знае всяко хлапе!
Tova go znae vsiako hlape![5]
Ivan & Andrei (2007–2008)
Dimitar & Deo (2008–2009)
bTV September 15, 2007 – February 20, 2009
 Canada (in English) Are You Smarter than a Canadian 5th Grader?[6] Colin Mochrie Global October 25, 2007 – November 22, 2007
( Quebec)
La classe de 5e[7] Charles Lafortune TVA February 5, 2009[8]
 Cambodia តើអ្នកឆ្លាតជាងក្មេងថ្នាក់ទី៥ឬទេ? Doung Sokhea CTN September 14, 2012
 Chile[9] ¿Sabes más que un niño de 5º básico? José Miguel Viñuela MEGA April 2, 2008
 China 五年级救助队
Wŭ nián jí jiù zhù duì[10]
Wang Han HNETV May 1, 2007
幸运52 幸运课堂
Xìng yùn 52 xìng yùn kè táng
Li Yong CCTV-2 June 1, 2007
Shéi bĭ shéi cōng ming[11]
Liu Ming-ming SZTV June 1, 2007[12]
Nĭ néng bì yè ma?[13]
Duan Lei
Jia Ning
TJTV June 2, 2007
Bù kǎo bù zhī dào[14]
Xu Rui SXTVS June 30, 2007[15]
Wǔ nián jí chā bān shēng
He Hao-peng Guangdong TV August 10, 2007[16]
 Colombia ¿Sabes más que un niño de primaria? Jose Gabriel Ortiz Caracol TV February 20, 2008
 Czech Republic Jsi chytřejší než páťák? Michal Suchánek and Richard Genzer TV Nova June 23, 2007
 Denmark Er Du Klogere End En 10-Årig? Jan Gintberg TV3 September 22, 2007
 Estonia Targem kui 5B Indrek Tarand TV3 September 13, 2008
 Finland Fiksumpi kuin koululainen Nicke Lignell MTV3 November 6, 2008
 France Êtes-vous plus fort qu’un élève de 10 ans ? Roland Magdane M6 September 3, 2007 – November 30, 2007
 Germany Das weiß doch jedes Kind![17] Cordula Stratmann Sat.1 July 6, 2007 – August 22, 2008
 Greece Είσαι πιο έξυπνος από ένα δεκάχρονο
Eísai pio éxypnos apó éna dekáchrono[18]
Sophia Aliberti ANT1 January 19, 2008 – June 2009
 Hong Kong 係咪小兒科
Hai Mai Siu Yi Fo[19][20][21]
Leo Ku TVB October 25, 2008 – November 16, 2009
 Hungary Okosabb vagy mint egy 5-es? Attila Till TV2 August 24, 2007
 Iceland Ertu skarpari en skólakrakki? Gunnar Hansson Skjár 1 October 21, 2007
 India Kya Aap Paanchvi Pass Se Tez Hain?[22] Shahrukh Khan STAR Plus April 25, 2008 – July 27, 2008
 India (Malayalam) Anchinodu Inchodinchu Suresh Gopi Surya TV August 23, 2021 – present
 Indonesia Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? Indonesia Tantowi Yahya
Nico Siahaan
Indy Barends
Global TV April 4, 2009 – 2010
 Israel ?'האם אתה חכם יותר מתלמיד כיתה ו
Ha'im ata hakham metalmid kitah vav?
Eyal Kitzis Channel 2 July 2007
 Italy Sei più bravo di un ragazzino di 5ª? Massimiliano Ossini (2008–2010)
Riccardo Rossi (2010–2011)
Sky Uno
October 6, 2008 – 2011
 Japan クイズ あなたは小学5年生より賢いの?
Kuizu anata wa shogaku 5-nensei yori kashikoi no?[23]
Takashi Suzuki NTV April 24, 2011
Gekidan Hitori November 11, 2018
May 3, 2019
August 8, 2019
Hitori Gekidan and Ryuta Sato October 18, 2019 – present
 Latvia Vai tu esi gudrāks par 5 klasnieku? Māris Olte TV3 September 8, 2007
 Lithuania Penktokų iššūkis Andrius Rožickas TV3 September 2, 2007
 Malaysia Are You Smarter than a 4th Grader? TV3 October 1, 2007 – September 30, 2008
 Mexico Todo el mundo cree que sabe Marco Antonio Regil Televisa June 13, 2009
 Mongolia Ta 5-p aнгийн хүүхдээс ухаантай юу? Edutainment TV January 5, 2013
 Myanmar ၅တန်းနဲ့ပြိုင် ဘယ်သူနိုင် Channel 7 2013
 Netherlands Ben je slimmer dan een kind? Erik van der Hoff Net 5 September 2, 2007
 New Zealand Are You Smarter than a 10 Year Old?[24] Dominic Bowden TV2 September 9, 2007 – November 25, 2007
 Norway Er du smartere enn en 5. klassing? Sturla Berg-Johansen TV2 March 9, 2012
 Peru ¿Sabes más que un niño de primaria? Bruno Pinasco América Televisión April 27, 2014
 Philippines Kakasa Ka Ba Sa Grade 5? Janno Gibbs GMA Network October 27, 2007 – May 9, 2009
 Poland Czy jesteś mądrzejszy od 5-klasisty? Robert Korólczyk (2007–2008)
Marzena Rogalska (2008–2009)
TV Puls October 29, 2007 – June 2009
 Portugal Sabe Mais Do Que Um Miúdo De 10 Anos? Jorge Gabriel RTP1 September 17, 2007 – June 30, 2008
 Romania Te crezi deștept decât un copil de clasa a 5-a? Virgil Ianţu Prima TV 2007–2008
Ești mai deștept decât un copil de clasa a V-a? Andrei Aradits Antena 1 October 27, 2023 – present
 Russia Кто умнее пятиклассника?
Kto umneye pyatiklassnika?
Alexandr Pushnoy STS December 9, 2007 – July 20, 2008
 Serbia Da li ste pametniji od đaka petaka? Voja Nedeljković Fox September 2007
 Slovakia Ste chytrejší ako piatak? Peter Marcin TV Markiza 2007
 South Africa Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?[25] Soli Philander M-Net January 27, 2008
 Spain ¿Sabes más que un niño de primaria? Ramón García Antena 3 June 28, 2007 – August 18, 2008
 Sri Lanka Punchi Pahe Man Vijaya Nandasiri Sirasa TV 2008
 Sweden Smartare än en femteklassare Lasse Kronér (2011–2017)
Josefin Johansson (2018–2020)
SVT1 March 19, 2011 – May 16, 2020
Marko Lehtosalo Kanal 5 September 7, 2023 – present
 Taiwan 百萬小學堂
Bǎi wàn xiǎo xuétáng
Chang Hsiao-yen (張小燕) (1st edition)
Bowie Tsang (曾寶儀) and Xiaoxia (小蝦) (2nd edition)
TTV October 3, 2008 – May 3, 2013
 Thailand ถ้าคุณแน่? อย่าแพ้ ป.4!
Kanit Sarasin Channel 3 October 1, 2007 – October 10, 2008
ถ้าคุณแน่? อย่าแพ้ เด็ก (ประถม)!
October 13, 2008 – April 29, 2010
 Turkey 5'e Gidenden Akıllı Mısın? Tolga Gariboğlu Star TV June 2007
 Ukraine Чи розумніший ти за п’ятикласника?
Chy rozumnishiy ty za p'yatyklasnyka?
Serhiy Prytula Novyi Kanal January 6, 2008 – July 13, 2008
 United Kingdom Are You Smarter than a 10 Year Old?[28] Noel Edmonds (primetime)
Dick and Dom, Damian Williams (daytime)
Sky One October 7, 2007 – April 24, 2010
 United States Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? Jeff Foxworthy Fox May 26, 2015 – September 8, 2015
February 27, 2007 – September 18, 2009
Syndicated by 20th Television September 21, 2009 – March 24, 2011
John Cena Nickelodeon June 10, 2019 – November 3, 2019
 Vietnam Ai thông minh hơn học sinh lớp 5? Tạ Minh Tâm (2009–2010) HTV2 (now Vie Channel) June 21, 2009 – June 20, 2010
Thanh Bạch (June 27, 2010 – January 10, 2013)
Trấn Thành (January 17, 2013 – January 9, 2014)
VTV3 January 19, 2012 – January 9, 2014
Bình Minh (February 16, 2014 – April 13, 2016) VTV6 February 16, 2014 – April 5, 2015
HTV7 April 22, 2015 – April 13, 2016

Video game[edit]

On October 20, 2008, developer THQ released the first video game, titled Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?: Make the Grade, for the PC, PS2, Nintendo DS, Wii, and Xbox Live Arcade. The Xbox Live Arcade version as of mid-2010 was delisted from the Xbox Live Game Marketplace.

A sequel Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? Game Time was released on October 26, 2009, for Nintendo DS, Wii and Xbox 360.

In 2010, Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader: Back to School was released

Capcom Mobile released a game based on the game show for iOS devices called "Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader 2010" in 2009.

In 2012, Ludia released a free game based on the game show called "Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? & Friends" for iOS devices.

In 2015, GameMill Entertainment released a game based on the 2015 FOX Primetime revival for the Nintendo 3DS.

A version for PC, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/Xbox One, developed and published by THQ Nordic subsidiaries Massive Miniteam and HandyGames, was listed on Steam and Amazon in 2022.

DVD game[edit]

Parker Brothers released a DVD game based on the show. Unlike the show, the player can only pick one classmate for the whole game and has a choice of 21 games. A 2-player mode is also available.

Video Slot Machine[edit]

In 2014, AGS (American Gaming Systems)[29][30] released a slot machine game based on the show (along with Family Feud and Ripley's Believe It or Not!) as part of their "It Pays to Know" series of games. The base of the game is a five-reel scatter pay video slot on a four-by-five, yielding 1,024 possible winning combinations on every spin. packed with bonus event like: "Free Spin Events", "Picking Bonuses" & "Mystery Awards". In the game, players are prompted to choose one of the four "Helpers" fall-backs like eliminating one of the four possible multiple-choice answers or its stats on how the audience would answer the question. The layer is then given a first-grade question and then tries to answer it correctly. The earlier the correct answer is picked, the higher the award. Answering a question correctly within three times advance the grade level and the game goes on. Completing the "Gold Star Bonus" in which the player picks from a field of five stars to reveal an advance award. In addition to the "Helper" picked at the beginning, the player can earn any of the three "cheats" by landing symbols on the primary game:

  • Peek – Just like the TV show, this help lets you look at the answers of a "classmate". You can then choose to "copy" the answer for the game while the other cheat is "Save" for which it automatically corrects your wrong answer if the classmate has the correct one.
  • Field Trip – In this bonus events, the picks are made to reveal multipliers for a free-spin bonus and two primary game events called "Mystery Jackpot" and "Mega Block Spins" where it expands the real field for up to 10 rows of symbols with three wild reels for one super spin.
  • Additional Note – In the "Peek" bonus event, the classmate will not always have the right answer.


See also[edit]

  • Gatekeepers (game show) – A 2010 Singaporean game show with gameplay format borrowed from Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?, but was not part of the Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? franchise


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External links[edit]