meep (meep) wrote,

Chinese mothers are superior?

I am sure there will be a flurry of responses to this piece written by Amy Chua on why Chinese mothers are better than "Western" ones. In terms of requiring certain achievements from their children. But even more, how they push their kids.

The good part: yes, parents need to push kids. They need to be required to do academic work that they don't like, or whatever activity it is they don't like. They need to learn how to do a =job=, and school is a job when you're young. There's crap you have to put up with.

I made all As past 6th grade, but you better believe a lot of those subjects I got A in I hated. I loathed chemistry. I had to actually work at it, think at it. But you know what? B was not an option. Of course, it wasn't my parents who required these grades. But if I knew there was no excuse for not getting stuff that was just a matter of working at it [as opposed to PE stuff -- I worked at it, but I realized I had limits there.] I rarely had to work hard in math, and even when I did, I enjoyed it. But other subjects - just something I had to put up with.

That said -- no one gives a shit how well you did in school past a certain point. No, not even in academia.

At some point, real life throws "assignments" at you - but they are not as well-defined as school assignments or violin etudes. And just working hard at something does not guarantee success. Unlike school.

So part of the issue is what kind of attitude are you instilling in your children? Work hard, good. Keep at it, sure. Fix one's errors, very good [80% completion of the job I gave you? I will not be happy at all as a boss.]

But they also need to learn problem-solving outside the "back of the book" solutions. They need to learn to deal with people, and sorry, great grades in school ain't going to give you that. For that matter, though, institutional school where you're mixing only with people your own age will also not do that.

So Chinese mothers - like any parents, get a lot of things right. But there are certain achievements being missed that will definitely have an impact on your kids' success in their life beyond school. Perhaps they should throw in some Dale Carnegie in there along with the violin lessons.

Cross-posted to POWIP.

via Instapundit: Comment at Althouse:

Then again, as I said above, one wonders why Asians, if they've got things so figured out, need to emigrate to the land of the substandard "Westerner" in order to live prosperously and free.
Others in the thread note that the rich kids actually in China waste plenty of time on video games and other such useless activities.

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