Community Voices Posts

運動的21個驚人好處

運動的21個驚人好處

[原文出自 English Source: 21 amazing benefits of exercise]

不像許多你聽到的為了健康而該避免的活動,運動的的確確是對你有好處而且許多研究都已經證實這些益處。美國疾病控制和預防中心建議每星期至少2.5小時適度的有氧活動或1.25小時劇烈的有氧活動,再加上兩天的伸展運動。

學什麼才藝最有用?

(本文發表於世界周刊 No. 1651, Nov. 8-14, 2015)

我剛成為空巢族,有個朋友是空巢族與退休族,孩子早入社會了。最近我問她:「你孩子大學畢業這麼久,工作也做得不錯,現在回首前塵往事,你覺得以前帶他進進出出,學這個學那個,有用嗎?」

「有什麼用?不就是學了嘛!」朋友說。

「沒用?」我很驚訝,說:「你忘了吧?當年你帶孩子來學鋼琴,繳納我的私房錢的時候說:『老師,我跟你講,學鋼琴沒用的,要學其他樂器才有用,才可以考郡樂隊或州樂團,才能寫在大學申請表上』,你記得嗎?」

「這是我說的嗎?不是別人說的?」朋友問我。「就是你說的!你曾經是虎媽,別不承認。」我說。

「舉一反三」包袱

孩子上中文學校多年,我也擔任鋼琴老師多年,認識了這麼多的學生及家長,發現有為數不少的父母都有一個「舉一反三」的慣性反應。請注意我說的是:「反應」。

舉個例子來說,如果有某位家長稱讚另一位家長的孩子:「你的兒子好乖喔!〈舉一〉」這位被稱讚的家長也許會有這種反應:「唉呦〈聲音馬上提高八度〉…..你不知道啦,他在家是一條龍,出外就變成一條蟲了〈反一〉,平常還懶的要命〈反二〉,而且叫他往東他就往西〈反三〉。」接下來,稱讚孩子的大人很可能就會說:「不會啦,我看他很乖啦!」這個腔是接得夠奇怪了,應該說是接不下去勉強湊合的,因為根本就是雞同鴨講,結果明明是一個正面友善的開場白,卻換來一個被稱讚的孩子在一旁不爽,猛翻白眼。

鋼琴「葉克膜」

幾年前在「向殘酷的仁慈說再見」一書中, 第一次接觸到「葉克膜」這個名詞。根據「維基百科」的解釋:「體外膜氧合 (Extra-Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation,縮寫ECMO,音譯俗稱『葉克膜』) 是一種醫療急救設備,用以暫時協助重度心肺衰竭患者進行體外的呼吸與循環。它能暫代患者的心肺功能,為醫療人員爭取救治時間。」

書中提到使用「葉克膜」的費用極高,而醫院濫用「葉克膜」的案例也不少。顧名思義,這本書是在提醒大家重視「善終」的意義。病人若該走了就該放手,不擇手段用科技來維持一口氣,讓病人求生不得求死不能,無論對病人或是家屬,都是一種折磨。

The Learning Myth: Why I Will Never Tell My Son He’s Smart

Do you sometimes praise your children for their intelligence or talent?

Do you tell them they are ‘smart’?

Salman Khan, founder of Khan Academy, explains why he would never tell his five year old son that he (the boy) is smart.

Read the article here.

 

5 x 3 與 3 x 5

「一枝鉛筆五元,如果買三枝,請問一共多少錢?」這是一題學習乘法時幾乎每個人都曾碰到過的數學題,無論中英文,反正題目讀完乘一乘答案就出來了,不是嗎?沒想到我的朋友陪孩子寫這麼簡單的數學功課,還寫出了問題。

一天她打電話給我,問我說:「你記不記得我們小學的時候,老師有特別交代過,如果一枝筆五元,這個 『五』 就應該放在前面,所以當要寫出算式的時候,得寫 5 x 3,如果寫 3 x 5 就是錯的?」我說:「嗯…好像有這麼一回事。你幹嘛問?你已經老到要寫回憶錄了嗎?」

Tai chi: A gentle way to fight stress

Tai chi: A gentle way to fight stress

[Source: Mayo Clinic]

If you’re looking for a way to reduce stress, consider tai chi (TIE-CHEE). Originally developed for self-defense, tai chi has evolved into a graceful form of exercise that’s now used for stress reduction and a variety of other health conditions. Often described as meditation in motion, tai chi promotes serenity through gentle, flowing movements.

What is tai chi?

別人的小孩有前途

兒子升上十一年級時,中文學校的同班同學全都上中文課超過十年了,正常美國學校的功課愈來愈忙不說,學生也都沒有興趣再繼續上中文課,於是紛紛成為學校的助教,星期日有空就來幫忙做點事,同時高中也要求學生拿一些校外義工的時數,算是一舉兩得吧。

一天碰到一位老師聊了聊,她跟我說:「我現在班上的助教是王大中,你認識嗎?」

我說:「認識啊,王大中跟我兒子同班,他的父母是講廣東話的,我還曾是他弟弟的啟蒙班老師。」

老師一聽,馬上開始對我稱讚這位助教:「這個孩子以後一定有前途,一定有前途!」

Advice to High-School Graduates: ‘You Are Not Special’ (source: The Atlantic)

Advice to High-School Graduates: ‘You Are Not Special’ (source: The Atlantic)

….. [article excerpt] …… Today’s adults grew up with asphalt playgrounds, playing outside unsupervised until dinner. But today’s kids are strapped in car seats from birth, and McCollough sees his students slowly losing autonomy. “The kids now seem so directed and scheduled—they’re tutored and coached and the degree to which parents are involved in their lives is … well, one notices,” he said. “They’re getting very little experience conducting their own lives and living with the consequences of their decisions. When they stumble, their parents step in, denying them very important formative experiences.”

Advice to High-School Graduates: ‘You Are Not Special’ (source: The Atlantic)

….. [article excerpt] …… Today’s adults grew up with asphalt playgrounds, playing outside unsupervised until dinner. But today’s kids are strapped in car seats from birth, and McCollough sees his students slowly losing autonomy. “The kids now seem so directed and scheduled—they’re tutored and coached and the degree to which parents are involved in their lives is … well, one notices,” he said. “They’re getting very little experience conducting their own lives and living with the consequences of their decisions. When they stumble, their parents step in, denying them very important formative experiences.”

公平

我有一個小表弟,他出生的時候,我已經上學了,他是所有的表弟表妹裡面年紀最小的。當初因為舅媽連生了四個男孩,又看到媽媽整天把姐姐打扮的漂漂亮亮,於是很想要一個女兒,她在高齡之下,鼓起勇氣的懷了第五胎。結果小表弟一落地,舅媽在那個重男輕女的年代,長嘆了一口氣說:「怎麼又是男生?」

於是偃旗息鼓,就此收山。

Getting Into the Ivies (Source: The Upshot – NYTimes)

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Ask just about any high school senior or junior — or their parents — and they’ll tell you that getting into a selective college is harder than it used to be. They’re right about that. But the reasons for the newfound difficulty are not well understood.

Sharing Is Caring … from Diane

  • Soothe a mild burn with an onion. After applying cold water or a cold compress, apply a slice of raw onion to the burn. Leave it on for 15 min, off for 5, and then put a fresh piece on for another 15 min. (Source: The Bottom Line 2/15/13)
  • Use bread clip ties to label wires for more organized electronics. (Source: Dr. Oz 1/17/14)
  • To make a bag of chips attractive, open it up and roll down the opening a couple of times. Then, take the points on the bottom and push them up into the bag. This will force the air out of the bag, expose the chips and the bag should be able to stand upright. (Source: Dr. Oz 9/25/13)

借我黑白相間的琴劍

電鈴響,學生來了,進門還沒脫鞋,第一句話就是:「老師,對不起!」

「你沒遲到啊,對不起什麼?」我說。
「因為我這個星期很忙,有兩個 project 要 due,學校還有活動,我沒有太多的時間練琴,所以對不起。」學生答。
「喔…是因為這個啊,以後請不要再說 『對不起』 了,因為你媽媽有繳學費啊!你沒有對不起我。」我說。

這個學生很有禮貌,第一因為他年紀比較大比較懂事了,第二則是因為他的母親很喜歡「借刀殺人」。十有八九的家長都如此,喜歡「借老師當刀來殺人」,而「借刀」之後的第一招經典招式,就是:「你沒練好,你是在浪費老師的時間,你對不起老師!」

Remember How We Started Out as Learners?

Happy Easter! Hope you enjoy this video.

讀「給予的樹」之後 (“The Giving Tree”)

讀「給予的樹」之後 (“The Giving Tree”)

剛來美國的時候,在學校認識一位對兒童文學很有興趣的學姐,她送了我一本英文童書「The Giving Tree」。這本書對我來說很特別,第一這是我來美國後收到的第一份禮物,第二書的插圖是黑白的,第三字很少而且英文淺顯易懂 (童書嘛),所以我非常喜歡,一直留到現在。

My Taiwan AID Summer Program Experience

p0-620x302In the 2013 summer, I joined the Taiwan AID Summer program at Ba Li Elementary school in Taiwan. As someone interested in a career in teaching, it gave me a wonderful opportunity to view the other side of the student-teacher relationship. The experience has given me the ability to understand the abilities of students and marvel at their abilities. As someone who enrolled in CSL classes for 6 years in BCS, I felt like I could really understand the perspective of children enrolled in ESL classes.

自然成長的必要

每個人成長的速度不一樣。有的孩子早熟,小小年紀就懂得察言觀色,說出來的話是腦子裡過濾幾遍才出口的;有的孩子則是手腳都已經抽長到大人尺寸,卻一天到晚像個二愣子,除了吃喝玩樂,沒有其他煩惱。

不管是我們的上一輩、上上一輩、我們自己、我們的下一輩…,都有一條萬年不變的定律,那就是一個人的生長,有自己的成熟速度,不是任何教育方法,和人為、自然環境可以改變的。

有一位醫生夫婦朋友,他們的女兒從小遺傳了爸媽聰穎的頭腦。這對夫婦可說是砸下重金來培養這個唯一的獨生女:從小上私立女子學校,請名師來家裡教法文,鋼琴、小提琴更是毫不手軟的栽培。而這個孩子也實在是塊料,當我們帶著十三歲的女兒去聽音樂會,這對夫婦的孩子在相同年紀,已經在幾百人面前的音樂大廳裏,氣定神閒地拉出高難度的曲子。

Don’t Help Your Kids With Their Homework

Don’t Help Your Kids With Their Homework

One of the central tenets of raising kids in America is that parents should be actively involved in their children’s education: meeting with teachers, volunteering at school, helping with homework, and doing a hundred other things that few working parents have time for. These obligations are so baked into American values that few parents stop to ask whether they’re worth the effort.

「替人著想」補習班

掐指算來,我居住在美國的時間已經超過在台灣的時間,可算是老華僑了,生活上的一切幾乎都已經適應美國,唯有一項不能,就是「不能拿著杯子,打開水龍頭喝自來水」,所以我家一直是煮水喝。

我家廚房中,有一個不鏽鋼的燒水壺,還有兩個裝涼水的塑膠壺。水先在大壺中燒開,待涼後再倒入塑膠壺中。兩個孩子小的時候是我們幫忙倒水,長大後就是他們自己倒,但是燒水的工作原則上還是我們做,所以當大壺沒水的時候,我要求他們一定要告訴我,我才能煮一壺新的開水,否則就沒水喝了。喝水這件事,怎麼會與補習班扯上關係呢?且看我寫來。兒子進了高中後,遇到不少韓國同學。韓國人的補習風氣很盛,更何況進了高中後,就表示與SAT 考試及申請大學愈來愈接近,家長也開始緊張起來了。有一天一個同學的媽媽打電話給我,聊著聊著她就問我有沒有讓兒子去補習,我告訴她沒有,因為叫孩子去補習,就是告訴他說「你爛,你得補」,我一點興趣都沒有。這位媽媽說,她知道學校裏的幾個中國同學,張三沒補李四也沒補,看來老中去補習的人好像不是很多。