Have your say
Work on your family relationships
I would like to express my views on the relationship between parents and children.
Teenagers often don't have a good relationship with their parents.
When their parents ask them about what they are doing or about their school work, they get annoyed and snap at their mum or dad.
This often leads to an argument.
Teenagers understand that their parents are concerned about them. But this puts more pressure on them because they don't want to fall short of their parents' expectations.
Parents who don't understand what their children are thinking might think they are disobedient and scold them.
To improve their relationship, parents should spend more time trying to understand their children's way of thinking.
It's not hard to do, once you decide to change.
Parents and children just need to communicate more.
Hang Seng School of Commerce
Don't be afraid to try
If we want to be successful, we need to try.
When we are babies, we try to walk and speak. When we are studying, we try new things, such as reading and writing. When we start working, we still need to try - try to make friends, work hard and get a promotion.
But many people are afraid of trying. They don't like people judging them when they don't succeed.
But unless you try, you will never be successful.
It doesn't matter if you have to try something many times, you will eventually find a way to solve your problems.
Remember, the beginning of something is the most difficult part. If you keep trying, it will get easier.
Tsuen Wan Public Ho Chuen Yiu Memorial College
Most schools have a rule banning students from bringing inappropriate items, including MP3s and mobile phones.
But many students still bring mobile phones to school. I believe teachers should be allowed to search students' bags.
Some might think this is an invasion of privacy but I disagree.
Once students enter a school, they are being supervised by teachers. There are guidelines on what they should wear and how they should behave.
For example, they are not allowed to eat or talk in class.
Students should be protected from evil, such as pornography and violent comics.
If they don't bring valuable items, such as mobile phones, to school, thefts will be reduced.
Searching students' bags is the only way to enforce this rule.
TWGHs Mrs Wu York Yu Memorial College
Enjoy the music
Music can help people relax and sharpen their mind.
I'm learning to play the electric piano. The majority of the students in my school play a musical instrument.
Taking part in sports is not enough. Students should learn to play a musical instrument, too.
I take part in sports, but I don't neglect my music lessons.
Focus on the power of thinking
A recent survey found that secondary school students spend more time memorising than using critical thinking.
The survey, conducted by the Chinese University of Hong Kong, revealed that students who used critical thinking achieved better results in mathematics, reading and science.
Some professors have urged schools to promote critical thinking instead of rote learning.
I believe both memorisation and critical thinking are important.
Students who take subjects such as Chinese history have to memorise special events and information.
Otherwise, they cannot get good results.
Critical thinking is also essential these days.
Students are advised to read newspapers and listen to the radio or watch television to improve their language skills.
I prefer critical thinking to memorisation. The former can help broaden our horizons so that we can solve our problems quickly.
The more you learn, the better your results will be.
Amy Lau Yuk-ching
Leung Shek Chee College
Birthday gift for best friend
It's hard to define a happy holiday.
Some people think it would be great to live in a five-star hotel or on a remote island with no people.
My 10th birthday was the happiest holiday I ever had.
Every detail is still clear in my mind.
The was a party in my house, where I played games and ate snacks.
We all had fun except Amy, my best friend.
Her parents were divorced a month earlier.
Although she wasn't happy, she was still smiling because she didn't want to upset me.
I tried my best to cheer her up.
I told her that her mum and dad still love her. I knew that she would get over her sadness one day.
I supported her, and after a few weeks, she was feeling much better.
I think that was my happiest holiday.
It's not because of the party, but because real friends should care about each other and try to lift their spirits when they are down.
I'm lucky to have a true friend who I'll never forget.
Troubled teens should seek help
The massacre at Virginia Tech University in the United States shocked students around the world.
Gunman Cho Seung-hui killed 27 fellow students, five faculty members and himself.
The tragedy could have been avoided if Cho had a more positive outlook about life and made more friends.
Cho was a loner, but the people around him could have helped him cope with his problems.
They should not have made fun of him.
This is a good lesson for all teenagers. They should seek help when they face difficulties.
Their emotions are like a time bomb. If the bomb explodes, the consequences could be deadly.
Becky Chan Lai-man
Shun Lee Catholic Secondary School
Skills upgrade vital
More and more Hong Kong workers are losing their jobs to mainlanders in the Pearl River Delta and the trend is continuing, a survey by the University of Hong Kong has revealed.
The ratio of Hong Kong staff to mainland employees in companies interviewed for the survey had dropped from 1:120 in 2003 to 1:170 last year.
This shows that more and more mainlanders are replacing Hong Kong staff.
This is not because of the lower salaries offered to mainlanders. They now have a better education and their skills have improved.
Hongkongers will have a tough time finding jobs across the border in future. We should upgrade our skills if we are to compete with mainlanders.
Our Lady of the Rosary College