Ecotourism in HK
Many Hong Kong people prefer shopping in malls to exploring the beauty of nature, but globally ecotourism is becoming more popular.
Since Hong Kong has a wide variety of natural and agricultural areas, such as Mai Po, why don't we promote ecotourism as a way of preserving our valuable wildlife? It might allow us to find a balance between development and the environment.
Your inner worth
Nowadays people compare themselves to each other on the basis of the property they own, their occupation and their wealth. Those less fortunate may be looked down upon by the wealthy.
I feel that people do not look at the richness of others' personalities, and there will be less warmth and friendliness in society if this phenomenon continues.
For example, if two best friends have similar backgrounds and wealth they can maintain their friendship. But if one of them fails, the other one may ignore the loser.
My mum loves to compare my academic results with her friends and neighbours. If she has nothing to show off about, she will feel sad and will blame me, but I really hate to compare myself to others.
My peers, who like to buy brand-name products to show off their wealth and social status, once insulted me for wearing old-fashioned sports shoes. I dislike people who look down on me just because I'm not up-to-date, but am I unrealistic? Should I follow their values so I can be part of the group?
Well-being for all
The dictionary defines well-being as a state of happiness. In our daily lives it's quite common for us to hear someone say that he or she is happy, but what actually makes a person happy?
Some people believe wealth can bring happiness, allowing them to buy brand name products, and the like. This, however, leads to a materialistic life.
Money cannot buy everything. Our relationships with our family and friends are priceless. Although money can sometimes bring happiness, it is not guaranteed to give us a sense of well-being. That only comes from our precious relationships and maybe from helping the needy. Spiritual satisfaction cannot just be ignored.
The have-nots, as well as the rich, can enjoy their own sense of well-being.
Derek Yip, Hang Seng School of Commerce
The rewards of a Pre-SBA session
Together with five classmates, I attended my Pre-SBA preparatory session last month.
Despite being very familiar with our audience, in other words our classmates, I couldn't help feeling nervous.
Fortunately, our group could interact reasonably well and the discussion was carried on without boring moments. As time passed, our confidence gradually increased.
During our 15 minutes, we discussed which of the characters from the film About a Boy we would talk about. Different ideas emerged, showing that everyone had different points of view. Sometimes a consensus would be reached but at other times our opinions differed a lot.
By the end of our discussion my heart was still beating fast.
Watching others debate made me feel that it was not very hard to give your opinions but when it was our group's turn it seemed that all my ideas were confused and I had difficulty being spontaneous. Another difficult thing was when a classmate expressed a view that no one else had an opinion about.
I liked the Pre-SBA session as it taught me what it felt like to talk in front of others, and showed me the main difficulties in doing this.
I hope that we all can overcome our nervousness and act in a natural way in our real SBA.
Wong Fabiola, The Chinese Foundation Secondary School
The cycle of friendship
'There is no such thing as a stranger, only a friend you haven't met' is a well known saying.
When we are born we know no one but our family. Later many strangers walk through our lives but only a selected few manage to leave footprints. These strangers become acquaintances and then friends.
One day you are as close as close can be, then a few days pass by without speaking to each other. Soon a few weeks or months fly by, and before you know it the friendship is no longer what it used to be. As long as the sun will rise and set, so will friendships.
When I look back at all the friends I have made and friends that have become strangers, I want to break this cycle. I have always chosen my friends carefully and conservatively. Anyone who was, is or will be my friend is definitely someone worth keeping in touch with.
So I have decided on a resolution that I plan to keep for the rest of my life: to keep in touch with all my friends, old and new.
It only takes a simple text message, a 'hello' phone call or a postcard to rekindle an old friendship. Hopefully this is not too difficult or unrealistic a goal, even in our breathlessly busy lives.
Maureen Cheung, Hang Seng School of Commerce
You're never too old
Learning new skills is fun and it's good for us.
Nowadays more and more elderly people join voluntary courses and learn different skills. Some of them even use these skills with great success. They do not think learning is hard, but find it interesting.
Just like the old people, we should all remember that we're 'never too old to learn'.
Rainy Tang, Shun Lee Catholic Secondary School