！2012 ---- 2013 学年 第 二 学期，
学院！中心、所，， 外国语学院 专 业 名 称， 英语语言文学 课 程 名 称， 美国研究导论 论 文 题 目， Implications of American
Family Education 授课 教师！职称，， 闫玉华！副教授，
研 究 生 姓 名， 关佳佳 年 级， 2012级 学 号， 201221001002 成 绩， 评 阅 日 期，
年 月 日
Implications of American Family Education
Abstract: The family is the first school for children and parents are children's first teachers. For a long time, our society has attached great importance to improving the quality of teachers, while ignoring the specialized training for parents. Thus there are many weaknesses in Chinese family education. We should learn advantages and strengths from foreign family education actively and improve the level of Chinese family education continuously.
Keywords: American family education; Implications;
1Lu Xun has put forward the famous “takeism”, meaning “we learn
what we need from western culture through the process of selection and
1 The doctrine of " takeism” is a famous essay written by Lu Xun in June 4, 1934. Lu Xun
criticized the wrong attitudes towards the cultural heritage of some people in this paper.
innovation. The academic circle has given the family education different definitions which can be divided into the generalized and specialized
2 is the most concept. Of many concepts, Professor Zhao Zhongxin
representative and specialized family education concept is discussed in this paper. From the specialized concept of Professor Zhao, family education refers to the elder family members (mostly parents) apply one-way education and influence to the young members. With the rapid development of economy and society, family education has aroused great attention from all sectors of society. Nowdays, there are many misunderstandings in family education of china .The United States has been ahead in fields of economy, science technology and education since nineteenth century. One important reason is that they pay much attention to family education. This paper introduces the characteristics of American family education, trying to put forward some suggestions for improvement of family education in our country.
2 America Family Education of the United States
American family education can be summarized by a few words: independent personality, open and democratic relationship and economic consciousness. These will be illustrated form the following four aspects.
2.1 The Content of Family Education
American family education is rich in content. It pays attention to the harmonious development of children in physical, cognitive, language, social, emotional aspects and so on; so many people also call the American family education “quality-oriented” education. In sports, it
pays attention to children's outdoor activities; in cognitive development, it emphasizes the idea that intellectual education should not be put in the first place and it advocates children's exploration into nature, which is to recognize the real world through its contact with nature. In the aspect of social culture, it encourages children to do things on their own, to participate in some collective activities, and to learn how to get along with others. In contrast, Chinese family education is the extension of school education paying attention to reading. On the development and investment of intelligence, Chinese family education ignores the cultivation of the ability to live.
2.2 The Methods of Family Education
American family education pays attention to democracy and equality, that is, parents take hands-off rather than laissez-faire educational strategy.
3These are manifested in: Firstly, American will never allow children to
continue their shortcomings and mistakes, let alone shield their shortcomings and mistakes. Instead they try to teach children to correct their mistakes; Secondly, American parents make encouragement and
praise as the basis of education. Thus children are full of confidence in the process of growing up. In contrast, Chinese family education has
4 is spoiling many defects, mainly manifested as follows: The first type
children, mainly manifested as doing everything for children, meeting all requirements of children. The second is autocratic type: Some parents apply strict control and compulsory education for their children. The third is laissez-faire type: following children’s own inclination, some parents
for, adopt an indifferent attitude to their children's education
2.3 The Result of Family Education
Because the United States parents put more focus on the cultivation of comprehensive ability of children, young people of the United States are very self-reliant. Their independent personality enables them to live in harmony with others; they have the courage to overcome difficulties. They dare to think, dare to do; they have the innovation spirit and confidence. They depend on themselves from 18 years old, earning wage for own consumption need, so they are much easier to adapt to the market economy than cheeses children. On the contrary, Chinese students’
characters often exhibit more negative tendency, generally manifested as poor ability in daily life, weak awareness of self-reliance, lack of caring
5and sharing ability, lack of social responsibility and apathy.
3 Implications of American Family Education on Chinese Family Education
China and the United States are two countries with great cultural differences. There are many differences both in idea and method of these two countries’ family education. From the introduction of American
family education above, some flashes can be found in the America family education which can bring our country’s family education some
3.1 Cultivate Children's Independence and Adaptability
In the process of raising children, American parents focus on the training of children’s ability to adapt to various environments and
independent ability. American parents pay great attention to training; they apply various ways to temper their children. In the United States, parents try to give the child an environment to make exercise. For example, let the babies stay alone without care; when child falls, parents will let him climb up on his own to cultivate children's independence; let young children do housework, such as washing bowl, sweeping the floor, washing clothes, even families of better economic conditions let children work to make money which not only cultivate children’s labor concept
but also cultivate children's ability to live independently. Chinese parents are different, and they are willing to do anything for the children. When
children think their parents pay too much for them and what they should do, they think they just need to study hard to be admitted to a university in the future will, while the American children will not consider studying hard as a way of rewarding their parents. Chinese parents often say to children: “just study hard, it’s none of your business”, “hasn’t pocket
money run out? Get money in the drawer of study room on your own." However the American parents will say: "we have to inform you that your pocket money is beyond the budget, if you sweep the garage and the
7 Chinese parents always swimming pool, we can give you some money."
have the spirit of sacrifice and selfless, giving children care; however, we should realize that there actually exist misunderstandings in this idea. Chinese family often hopes that their children can be admitted to a university, have a good job and live in peace.
Usually they only pay attention to learning knowledge of children, but ignore other ability of children. Under such a concept, Chinese children are taught the book knowledge and high scores are their learning goals. Therefore, Chinese children have sound knowledge; understand knowledge of textbook well, so in the competition, Chinese students tend to win gold medals. Their father and mother are proud of this. However, compared to this, in the United States, America students tend to think independently, and they are good at asking question. They learn more in
extra-curricular than in class, so they have imagination, creativity and very strong curiosity for knowledge. The United States children often boast about themselves: "Look! This new car is made by ourselves!" while Chinese children often say: "look! My grandfather bought me a new car! “Chinese parents often put wisdom in a more important position than virtue. Too much attention to children's learning performance, doing everything for children, spoiling children, and unrestrained gratification of children’s request causes the child's independence and poor
adaptability. Children of The United States tend to say to their parents: "I have enough money and I'm going to have a travel!” while Chinese kids
say to parents:"I'm going to have a travel. Please give me some money."
3.2 Establishment of a Democratic and Equal Relationship
American parents respect the child's idea, let the children decide, never force their children, give understanding and support to children and establish a democratic and equal relation between parents and children. When children make a mistake, parents always explain the reason to children patiently, most cases they speak to children with polite language. For example, when they need help from children, they will say, "would you please help me?”," thank you ". Children grow up in a democratic
atmosphere, feeling others’ respect for him and it is natural for him to
respect people. While many families in china adopt a paternalistic approach and parents tend to dominate children with their will. As
children grow older, parents should often talk with children equally. Parents should establish a democratic and equal friendship with children and respect children as an independent human dignity.
.3 Foster the Children's Self-confidence 3
In the United States, many children like skateboarding. In the street, on the square, children often rush here and there, go up and down, and passers-by cannot help worrying these children’s security. It is interesting
that among these skate boarding children, Chinese are rare, and then what is the reason? Playing skateboarding requires skills and Chinese are good at playing skillful game, but skateboarding need courage, because it dangerous. They also grew up in the United States, why Chinese children dare not play the adventure game? Trace its source, the reason is Chinese families’ traditionally. Many Chinese parents believe this game is too dangerous, easily broking limbs, and thus do not encourage children to play. Although the game is a chance to challenge and train children’s
courage, but Chinese parents think the risk to let children receive courage is not worth taking. In fact, this excessive protection for the body causing the timid character is more damaging than the less serious injury; and this damage in character is lifelong. Wound will soon heal while weakness in character cannot change a short duration of time. Of course, we don't encourage children adventure randomly. But encouraging children to have the spirit of adventure and have courage to overcome timidity is
very important. Many sports can cultivate children’s courage, confidence
and spirit of adventure. Encouraging children to participate in challenging sport actively will undoubtedly bring a lot of benefits on children’s future
development. Confidence is like the capacity catalyst which can all mobilize all potential of a person and promote functions of every part to the best. As a parent, you are the most powerful force in life for a child. You can give the children encouragement, affirm and enjoy every
8achievement they have made; For example, you might say to them, "you
are great. I’m really proud of you “in order to let the children build
self-confidence, work hard; you should let children believe you are their firm support along the way ahead. Once the kids think their ideas have value, then they will feel their own value.
3.4 Pay Attention to the Art of Punishment
Men are not saints, to err is human. Parents make mistakes, so do the growing children. When children make a mistake, whether to punish or not and how to punish become an unavoidable problem for parents. Punish or be punished, neither is a pleasant thing, but punishment is needed and punishment must be appropriate. Then if children make a n error, how to punish? Usually Chinese parents think strict requirements of children are needed, because children having made a mistake should be