Preparing to shine in a globalised world
It's not enough nowadays for students to simply have good academic results. We also need to prepare ourselves to enter a very competitive and globalised world.
This requires not only critical thinking but also broad horizons, and I think that learning a foreign language is essential for that.
When we take up a foreign language, we learn about a different culture, and that is a valuable asset. It provides more opportunities to study abroad, which in turn teaches us more about other cultures, both broadening our outlook and providing better job opportunities.
What's more, a recent survey found that learning a foreign language helps keep your brain in shape.
Yet another added bonus is that a foreign language can expand our social circles beyond Hong Kong into the wider world.
Remember, however, that learning a foreign language needs time and hard work. Continuous practice is the only road to perfection.
Forgive and forget
I think it is important to forgive others' faults.
It's easy to feel disappointed at times by the behaviour of our friends, particularly when they let us down, but I think we should do our best not to get upset and annoyed.
If we can forgive them, we will feel better, and perhaps they will think twice about whatever it is they've done and change their ways.
Without our parents we wouldn't exist
Every day we go to school and study, and bring our work home, and many of us tend to think we're working harder than our parents. This is not true.
Our parents have to work by day, and sometimes by night, and they also have to handle the pressure of looking after the family.
It horrifies me when I hear stories of teenagers shouting at their parents, threatening them and even hitting them. I really cannot understand these teenagers. Our parents brought us to this world. We should be grateful. I love my parents, and I wish every son and daughter will feel the same way.
Santok Gurung, California School
Find goals for a meaningful life
It seems today that many people give no thought to the meaning of their lives. They lead lives that lack aims and goals.
Too many teenagers' lives revolve around eating and playing computer games, putting as little effort as possible into their studies. What is happening? Is this a sign of a sick society?
It's not that we lack the resources to lead meaningful lives - the resources are all around us - but that too few of us are applying ourselves to utilising them.
I think, if you are just killing time, you are actually killing yourself. We need to establish goals for ourselves, and establish meaningful lives. This is the only way to success and true happiness.
Elessar Chan, Kowloon Technical School
Share the freedom of flying with family
Sometimes I want to fly and be completely free of pressures and responsibilities, and I think there are many people out there in the modern world like me.
But there are some responsibilities we cannot shirk completely, and the biggest is our family.
Life is so fast-paced today we often neglect communication with our family members and the family falls apart as a result.
Perhaps when that is happening, it's time to fly together.
An overseas holiday with family members is an opportunity to relax, forget the pressures of daily life, and communicate again, while broadening horizons with knowledge that cannot be found in a textbook.
If you can't actually afford to fly somewhere with your family, there are always Hong Kong's country parks. I want to say to everyone in my life, I hope one day we can fly together.
Jodie Chan, Leung Shek Chee College
Don't think you're a nobody
I think it is important to resist the feeling that you're a 'small potato', a nobody. It seems that nowadays in Hong Kong a lot of people think they're just cogs in a big, busy society.
My brother seems to feel this way. He doesn't have a senior position in his company, and isn't allowed to make any important decisions. He says he feels useless.
I don't agree with him, and I think that thinking of this sort is unhealthy because it might actually result in you really becoming useless. Everybody has their own unique talents. All you have to do is embrace what you're best at.
Never yield to feelings of being a nobody. Within you is the power to be of help to someone somewhere.
Get enough sleep for a healthy life
It's essential that we get enough sleep, if we want to succeed in our studies and in life.
To be sure, sleep is something of a mystery, but we do know that it is important for good health, and that good sleepers tend to lead long lives.
Even more importantly, recent research has shown that good sleep is very important for memory.
It appears that our brains are very active while we're sleeping, processing and filing all the information we've acquired in the course of the day.
Good health and strong powers of memory are essential for getting ahead in life.
Be sure to get enough sleep every night.
Anterdeep Kaur, California School