Date
24 July 2017
Children are not known to have high aptitudes for some basic skills but experts say grading them as part of school work creates unnecessary pressure. Photo: Baidu.com
Children are not known to have high aptitudes for some basic skills but experts say grading them as part of school work creates unnecessary pressure. Photo: Baidu.com

Experts worried about life skills assessment for schoolchildren

Experts are worried that an assessment-linked life skills training for primary one students is putting too much pressure on schoolchildren.

Some schools are teaching all kinds of practical lessons to Hong Kong children who are not known to have high aptitudes for some basic skills as tying shoe laces, cutting nails or opening a water bottle, Sky Post reports.

An online post by a parent said life skills assessment is included in general studies for primary one students.

It covers three tasks, each of which the students must complete in one minute — buttoning up their school uniform, folding their PE uniform and cleaning their desks and tidying up their school bag.

Doris Cheng, an associate professor in early childhood education in the Hong Kong Institute of Education, said learning life skills is important but assessments are not necessary.

Instead, parents should spend more time with their children to show them how to take care of themselves, she said.

Cheng said they can make the whole experience fun and the outcome successful.

Raymond Lai, chairman of the Primary School Heads Association, said such assessments are not a bad idea, although he would prefer to encourage children by appreciating their efforts, not merely giving them a certain score.

Lau King-yuk, founder of children’s training center Creative Power, said children should learn life skills from a young age and parents should let them do things on their own.

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