Thursday, 9 February 2017

Voices: Pushing children to excel is fine, if done within limits

The key idea behind “The gentle touch” (Jan 31) is not new: Parents must support their children in their educational journey.

As much as parents need to be their children’s supporters, they must remember that they are valued partners too, which entails more than support.

As a partner, parents can build up their children and push them to their limits such that they can excel further, academically or otherwise. The writer added rightfully that parents should “offer guidance, instead of actually setting demands”.

Pushing is not a bad thing if it is within reason and the child’s limits. In this competitive world, gone are the days when grades were all that determined a good job or future.

The idea of “good” has also globalised and includes excellence in values, skill sets and mindsets. This is why schools enthusiastically engage pupils in holistic programmes and activities such as leadership roles, community service, arts appreciation, co-curricular participation, et cetera.

Through these programmes and activities, pupils can learn skills and values that, once they graduate, they can apply to the real world, where they learn to work with people, build on their confidence and be resilient in their life pursuits.

These are a few of the scenarios. Partners in education — schools, parents, community — must collectively be active and constructive so that holistic education comes to life.

Each partner has a valuable role in shaping the future of Singapore. Parents must continue to encourage children to excel in school, not forgetting values and skills beyond the classroom.

Amir Mirza Johari


Health tip: Get calcium from food rather than from supplements

It is best to get calcium from foods rather than from supplements.


Potatoes are poisonous, eat with care

Potatoes are daily diet to many families, especially in the West and America. But do you know that potatoes are poisonous when the skin turns green?

The green is due to a high concentration of the glycoalkaloid poison. Therefore, it is best to remove potato skin before eating.

There is also poison in the stems and leaves of potato plants. Remember not to drink potato leaf tea. It can kill you.

Even though potato poison is rare, it can still occur. Death normally comes after a period of weakness and confusion, followed by a coma.



What are mushrooms

All mushrooms are fungi, but not all fungi are mushrooms.  For those fungi that produce them, the mushroom plays a similar role to a flower or a fruit in plants.  Some part of each mature mushroom produces microscopic spores that are similar to pollen or seeds, sometimes numbering in the trillions. The rest of the fungal organism typically lives in the soil, wood, or some other material and is composed of thread-like strands known as mycelium.  The expanding growth of the mycelium often results in circles of mushrooms or “fairy rings.”

Read here on mushrooms commonly found in our supermarkets

Read here on other types of mushroom, including poisonous and medicinal mushrooms.

Benefits of Lingzhi mushrooms

Reishi Mushroom: Helps Fight Cancer, Boost Immunity & Improve Liver Detox

Mushroom medicine: 5 fungi capable of profound healing