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Asian Parents

These folks go a bit nuts when it comes to their kids. And we're not only talking school. They schedule their entire week around their kid; school, tutoring, and activities. I've seen this first hand now with my friend Ye. She quite literally has every day planned for her boy Charlie. Like, down to the hour. I know it sounds like a stereotype. It is. The image above plays into that, but it's certainly true for a higher percentage of parents here than I've ever experienced back in the states.

Before coming to China I made sure to watch a couple of suggested movies. Joy Luck Club and Crazy Rich Asians were the two that stood out. There was a theme in each about Asian parents going overboard on raising their children. They would sacrifice everything to make sure their kids future was assured.

I'm getting a first hand slap in the face with this concept. We had our second dose of Chess CCA today after school. Tried to plan it out better, but we walked away still feeling like it was a train wreck. We'll learn and adjust for next week. I learned today that kids don't sign up for the CCA activities. Their parents signed them up. The reason we have so many 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders is because they view chess as a path to future academic success. They are way way way too young to be learning chess in a room with 25 other kids of the same age. Add in the concept that many would rather be outside running around I circles... train wreck. Making it worse we know we have some that would like to learn the game and improve at chess, but we're too busy herding cats. Frustrating; but we need to plan better for next week and get some more support.

Ours is not to reason why, but to make the best of a bad situation. We got this. We're going to scrap the idea of teaching the game and keep our focus on crowd control and management. Roll out the boards and let them play. If we have moments where we can teach some chess tactics or basics great, but that can't be our focus. Again, herding cats.

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Do you get the sense that this is connected to family honor or something like that? Your kid's success being a reflection of you? That would make the most sense in explaining the obsession, like you're bringing shame to your ancestors if you don't succeed.

Mike Durkee
Mike Durkee
Oct 22, 2022
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I'm continually flabbergasted at the notion that we (in the states) say we care about our youth and our elderly... uhhh, show me the evidence. You may point towards the money we spend on schooling, but how about early child care (for those less economically fortunate)? I will not go on a diatribe about how we don't protect our children from predators... and our elderly? well, anyone that has had a parent go into a "home" and was attentive about what kind of care our parents got... well, I did say I would not go on a diatribe so I will stfu (whew!).

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