Wednesday, April 14, 2010

One Day Some Parents will Employ a Pro to Teach Their Kids to Ride a Bike ...

I jokingly said the above two or three years ago in a meeting of a group of ISF parents.  Seems that it is happening.

My daughter's school is one of those schools in Hong Kong which sadly have become home to some of the more well-off who, feeling insecure 25 (twenty-five) hours a day, are very keen to make available what they think are "the best" to their children.  Here you can find parents who, believing that the sky will collapse if their 8-year-old son does not speak like Sir David Attenborough and their 6-year-old daughter does not sing in the most angelic voice, will pay over US$10,000 to enrol their kids in some "exclusive" Summer programme in the UK and get Teresa Carpio to teach their kids to sing, one-on-one.  This group of parents always tend to moan and complain a lot more than others.  Meeting them for more than a quarter of an hour you will wake up in a cold sweat at night with visions of a house full of the most desperate househusbands and housewives (sometimes, the former may look more desperate than the latter).  At ISF there exist another group of parents - they don't complain about this and that and are more ready to accept things as they are; they don't feed their kids with all the "required" private lessons and don't assess their kids on a daily basis.  And, you know what?  Their kids are happy and turn out just fine.  My daughter is one of the kids who do fairly well at school.  A few months ago I attended the PTA drink gathering at the Red Bar.  A lady parent approached me and asked, "Your girl does not have any extra private tuition and have only two outside school activities? How come she does so well at school?" "People get themselves mixed up with cause and effect," I said, "She does well because she is not burdened with private lessons or too many activities."  My honest answer wouldn't be well received, I knew...

Some parents are determined, very determined to make their own lives, their spouses', their kid's and everybody's lives miserable.  I am determined to stay away from them and stick to the happy ones.  Life is too short to stay close to the negative energy generators.  It's not that they are bad or foolish people.  No, not at all.  In fact, a lot of them are very good people and high achievers in their own fields.  Yet, it seems that they are convinced that they can plan everything and everything should proceed as planned.  They also religiously believe that all the good things are must-haves (or must be offered) and that if they plan well, follow the right method, get the right school, etc., their kids will turn out fine.  Is that so?   Did any of these successful men and women have any of the wonderful must-haves that their kids have?



5 comments:

gweipo said...

ha ha ha, I told my husband this weekend that he had only one task between now and summer and that was to help my son in the final steps of learning to ride a bicycle! He's nearly there and mum helping him absolutely is not nearly as meaningful and Dad doing so!

W said...

Exactly, leave it to the Dad.

Anonymous said...

All parents worry and those with the means to do so, will try to increase the odds of "success" for their children. If that equates to private school tuition, extra-curricular activities, summer camp in the UK or tutoring, it will be done. I think the worry is really a symptom of affluence and choice. Of course, in Asia, with the emphasis on education, it can be even worse.

gweipo said...

they went off yesterday morning and came home triumphant!

Aileen said...

Whoa you weren't kidding! Aiya you should just provide this link to your post from my blog comment section, it's great, very candid!

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