PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 December, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 01 December, 2008, 12:00am

Beauty sets a world-class example

We should all make the most of the talent we have to make our lives worthwhile.

I recently read about Nazanin Afshin, the Iranian-Canadian human rights activist and former Miss World contestant who travels around the world telling people about human rights.

I think she is intelligent and beautiful. She uses her fame to improve other peoples' lives and sets a good example for young students. I think we can learn a lot from her attitude.

Students in Hong Kong are lucky. They have the opportunity to study and if they work hard they can get a well-paid job.

We should follow Nazanin's example and do our best to help people less fortunate than we are.

Crystal Wong, Leung Shek Chee College

Learning to live on a tight budget

The global financial crisis has made people in Hong Kong more aware of the need to use money wisely.

I think students should learn how to manage money when they are still at school.

Our parents say: 'We have to save money', but I think young people should also try to control their spending.

Most of the younger generation get too much pocket money and spend it on things they do not really need.

Parents think giving lots of pocket money means they are doing the right thing for their children.

I think it creates bad habits. Instead, schools should teach students about living on a budget.

Learning good financial management is vital to our future. We should start before we develop bad habits.

Siu Wing-yin, The Chinese Foundation Secondary School

Knowing the people next door

In the old days, everyone knew who their neighbours were. Today we all live in flats in tall buildings and we never speak to the people who live near us. Teenagers even feel embarrassed and uneasy when they meet their neighbours.

I think this has a lot to do with the way we live. In the past people lived in small houses in villages where there were not very many people. They saw their neighbours every day so they got to know them well.

Television is another reason why we don't know our neighbours anymore. We now have lots of distractions like television shows and computer games that discourage us from talking to the people around us.

Then there is the fast pace of life that we have in Hong Kong. People are so busy with their careers they don't feel they have the time to get to know the neighbours.

I think living in a community where people know and talk to each other is a good thing.

We should all make an effort to get to know our neighbours. They can be good fun and can teach us a lot.

Judy Chang, Leung Shek Chee College

Fight hard for the Hong Kong spirit

The turmoil in the world financial markets is very worrying for people in Hong Kong.

They think life will be more difficult in the future.

Some married couples have even decided not to have another baby because they cannot afford it right now.

This difficult situation makes me wonder how many children there should be in a family.

I read a report recently that said half of families with three children wished they only had two. I have one brother and one sister so I asked my mother if she felt the same way.

Her answer was 'Absolutely not, I have the responsibility of taking care of all of you. There is no time for regret'.

When Hong Kong's economy was bad in the past, some children could not go to school. That made students work harder and pay more attention. It made them value the chances that they were given.

I think fighting hard for things is part of the Hong Kong way of life. Competing with other people is what has made the city such a success.

The economic downturn will make life difficult for a while but it will be of benefit in the long term.

Young people in Hong Kong have been spoilt for a long time. A bit of competition will do them good.

Annie Au, Leung Shek Chee College

Seeing the world eye-to-eye

Be sure to look people in the eye when you talk to them.

Eye-to-eye contact is an important part of communication because it lets people know you are giving them your full attention.

Other types of body language, like your facial expression and the way you move, are also important if you want to get your message across, particularly if you are making a speech in public.

When you speak to an audience you can learn a lot from their physical reactions.

If you find your audience yawning, rubbing their eyes, looking bored and leaning over in their chairs, you know you have to make you speech more interesting to get their attention.

Penguin Wu

Bad language is a form of pollution

Teenagers use a lot of bad language nowadays.

According to a recent survey, students' conduct and moral standards and behaviour have worsened every year.

In the past, young people were scared of being scolded by their parents but now that does not worry them. They just ignore it when they get told off.

I think bad language is like pollution. It is as bad as smoking and should be banned in public places in just the same way.

Matthew Chan Ho-tin, La Salle College