The Spoon-feeding Education | UNICEF HK GenAction|For the Generation Action (2023)

Do you like studying? Honestly if your answer is a "yes", I would probably think that you are lying, or else you are insane. 10 to 10, I believe you can hardly find a student telling you that they are enjoying their studies in Hong Kong.

Definition

We can see the literal meaning of the term, "spoon-feed", referring to someone is being fed with a spoon, that all their duty is to eat what has been given to him or her.

The Spoon-feeding Education | UNICEF HK GenAction|For the Generation Action (1)

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Similarly, when it is used to describe the education system of Hong Kong, it tells us that students are provided with so much help or information that they do not need to think for themselves.

But, here's the question, is this really do more good than bad to a student's personal growth and lives?

Obviously, there have been opposing voices constantly, though some do not think there is any problem. So, I'm going to dig deeper into this arising issue.

Things we do under this education system

Homework, school projects, tests, quizzes, exams, etc. that’s what on my mind if you ask me, or I should say that's my schedule. Maybe I can also add tutorial classes to the list.

I, as one of the students, studying in Hong Kong, totally agree with those who said "Hong Kong students do not need to learn, they have a package marked as 'the knowledge delivery'. Students nowadays are told what to do."

We arrive at school every day at 8 in the morning, take our books from the lockers, sit down and listen to what the teacher has to say for maybe 8 lessons, have all the notes jotted down, the bell rings and we take our stuff back home.

We are basically having a memory game at school. We submit the homework on time, and revise for every test and exams by memorising the notes we have. If you are hardworking enough, you probably would know all the questions in the exam.

Not only do we need to have all the homework done, this is not enough, we are required to attend at least certain amount of tutorial classes, so that we would not be left behind in school.

PROs

Providing social mobility

This could provide the social mobility to the children from grassroots family, who might not be very intelligent. Why do I say so? Just like I said, students are playing the advanced "Spelling Bee Contest".

As long as you have worked hard and studied with all your effort, it's not hard to have average results in the HKDSE, that you could have the chance of getting in one of the universities in Hong Kong.

Comparing to the education system in Hong Kong few decades ago, when students were required to pass the two public exams -HKCEE & HKALE- to study in the tertiary education, it is easier for the students in these days to get into universities.

Therefore, even children who are not very talented in academics, if they are willing to give up their playtime to study, they could get into university. In that case, they could later work in a relatively physically less-required-job with an average salary, that they could maintain their life without much burden.

CONs

Pressure lead to mental illnesses

Students studying under the spoon-feeding education, with all the tight schedule and burdened with much homework, they usually will face more pressure, and thus more likely to have mental illnesses, eg depression.


Suicides among Hong Kong children and adolescents accounted for a quarter of all unnatural deaths in 2012 and 2013. Sources also told that "One in three primary school students in Hong Kong at risk of suicide". One of the major causes is the academic pressure.

When students are mentally ill, it will not only affect their relationships with others, it is hard for them to find happiness in life, which is actually the most important thing.

Parenting

This education has developed the competitiveness in every Hong Kong students and parents.

Not wanting their children to lose at the starting line, children have many classes since early ages, which would make their childhood miserable.

Parents having high expectations on their kids would give them, the students, more pressure, that without suitable treatment, will as well develop as mental illness.

Study life balance?

I think you might have heard about “work life balance”, how about balancing between studying and enjoying your life then?

Students are often required to have a desirable results in exams, that only having lessons in their regular school is not enough for them anymore. Most of us will now go to extra classes in the tutorial institutions or having a private tutor at home.

Moreover, being a well-rounded person is what makes us at the top of our game. So we will have many extra-curricular-activities after school or at weekend.

When our schedule for our everyday life is already fully packed, we could not possibly squeeze out some time to spend with our family or friends, or even just simply doing our hobby, it could be jogging or reading.

Studying, of course is important, especially at our age, but I have to say that there is a lot more to discover outside the world when we grow up. We have to stay positive and appreciate things.

However, modern Hong Kong students, are so packed up, that they do not know how to achieve a “study life balance”, which is a pity.

Lose their chance of being a kid

Children lost their childhood when they do not have much time to play, do silly things as they have lessons to attend! How much fun could they get when they are all grown-ups, when they don't even have it when little?

Furthermore, this education system does not provide children their own thinking space that they could not explore their our talents and creativity. They are told to study, answers are told when they do not know how to do the question. Their minds are fixed in a long run.

They became robots and do not have to enjoy the rights they should have, like playing, having a happy childhood, but always facing their desk.

Eastern VS Western Schools

While most Eastern countries are having the spoon-feeding education, Western schools, on the other hand, focus more on student participation in discussions, fostering curiosity and encouraging students to challenge ideas.

Students see their role as contributors, not just recipients of whatever is spewed out by the instructor in the classroom. Effort is emphasized upon, but not too much on standardized testing.

In contrast to Eastern schools faulting students and their families for academic failure, disappointing returns from Western students are often made the fault of institutions who have failed to support their learning.

The spoon-fed education emphasises the academic studies, that talents produced in this education system usually tends to work in few industries. For example, in Hong Kong, the development of financial industry is boosting, while the arts industry has been hindered as not much people are in the area.

On the contrary, in Western countries, almost all industries are well-developed, as students could find their own talent and being creative in something that they are good at, and are encouraged to further explore their ability.

Thoughts

Personally, I would appreciate more if we have the Western education system in Hong Kong.

I can see that many talents in Hong Kong are nurtured under the spoon-fed education, but I think that Hong Kong could be an even better city when people are diversified into different industries.

Hongkongers can then do their work and still be doing something that they love. I believe when someone is interested in doing a thing, they will be more willing to put more effort on it.

Also, we could be able to have a "study life balance" & "work life balance", when there is more time for us to just do something we enjoy, but not always academics. That we could have a happier life

How to achieve this goal?

As a young envoy, more of that, a children and a student, I am provided different platforms to help promote us being happy and having a "study life balance".

Social Medias

Entering to the technological era, the first thing that come to mind to promote this message, of course, is the social media!

Nearly all of us now have our own electronic gadgets, communicating with others, doing our school projects, playing games etc. and that I’m sure we check our social medias accounts at least twice a day.

With the use of social media, messages to be widespread are always packed as some more interesting and catchy advertisements, like a poster or a video, that people who saw could easily get the message and remember it.

A simple post on my social media accounts, could already stir up others feeling, reminds people that having a "study life balance" or 'work life balance" is actually an amazing thing, and would try to do some changes to enjoy some fresh air.

Positivity could easily spread from one to another, but solely me working on this will not be enough. So, I am here to call upon you, to use your limited but more-than-enough power, to promote the optimism to your nearest and closest!

FAQs

What is spoon-feeding in education? ›

Spoon-feeding in education can be defined as the process of teachers directly telling students everything they need to know about the requirements of a specific task, thus requiring little independent thought on their part (Smith, 2008).

How does spoon-feeding script into education? ›

Tends to create 'learned helplessness', a condition resulting in students becoming reliant on the spoon-feeding. Results in 'lazy' students who take little responsibility for their own learning - students who lose handouts on a regular basis, who appear engaged ONLY when gaining the teacher's undivided attention.

Is spoon-feeding good? ›

Spoon-feeding is basically treating your student like a baby; a blank mind that needs to filled with the teacher's knowledge. The most important question every teacher must ask is: Is there more to learn? The answer is always yes. Therefore, spoon-feeding is never justified in any form.

What is spoon feed? ›

to give someone so much help or information that that person does not need to try himself or herself: By giving out printed sheets of facts and theories, the teachers spoon-fed us with what we needed for the exam.

How does spoon feeding harm the youth's future study prospects? ›

The students who are used to spoon-feeding are also less responsible for their learning process. They can often misplace their workbooks, answer sheets, forget their homework, get easily distracted, etc. Being used to spoon-feeding can also cause damage to the students when they reach higher education levels.

How can we stop spoon feeding in education? ›

Three ways to stop spoon-feeding and stretch students
  1. Create a portal of resources. Your school is likely to have a shared area that teachers and students can access. ...
  2. Try extension grids. Extension task grids are a great resource for students and can be uploaded to your portal or resource bank. ...
  3. Embrace examiner reports.
20 Dec 2020

Does spoon feeding impede independent learning? ›

Students eventually lack initiative and problem-solving skills because they have not been trained to search for data by themselves (Samah, 2009). Continuing to spoon-feed students in higher education perpetuates the issue of stifling their creative thinking and independent learning.

What are the main important ideas behind learner centered teaching? ›

Learner-centered education uses interactive strategies to engage the students and develop their abilities. This educational approach helps students develop skills such as decision making and problem solving, team work, and presentation skills that are relevant to the current labor needs.

How do you spoon feed a baby? ›

Bring spoon to your baby's mouth and tip so that the breast milk just touches your baby's lips. It should NOT be poured into your baby's mouth. Your baby will lap the breast milk up by moving his tongue forward. Allow your baby time to swallow before refilling spoon and offering more breast milk.

What are the disadvantages of spoon feeding? ›

Traditional spoon feeding Cons:
  • It can be more expensive, if families are purchasing baby food and pouches.
  • It can be time consuming if families are making homemade baby foods.
  • It doesn't allow baby to self- regulate food intake, more likely to eat more when being spoon feed.
16 May 2017

What's another way to say spoon fed? ›

What is another word for spoon-fed?
babiedmollycoddled
coddledindulged
pamperedruined
catered togave in
given inspoiled rotten
72 more rows

How does Inge portray industrial revolution in the text spoon feeding? ›

Inge sees this "spoon feeding" in a negative light. He sees lives which are without challenges, a colossal misfortune in essential abilities, and an unmistakable absence of the utilization of our brains. Unexpectedly, this essay was composed in 1903.

What is the past tense of spoon-feed? ›

past tense of spoon-feed is spoon-fed.

What is Katori spoon feeding? ›

“Feeding with a spoon and katori has been found to be safe in low birth weight babies this mode of feeding is a bridge between gavage feeding and direct breast feeding”. This is the method used for feeding when the infant cannot latch on to the mother because either the mother or the infant is sick.

Why everything we've been told about food is wrong? ›

Spoon-Fed: Why almost everything we've been told about food is wrong (Paperback) Taking a revelatory look at the misinformation about the food we eat, Spoon Fed busts myths and questions policies in short and accessible bite-sized chapters.

Should you spoon feed a 4 year old? ›

Yes, if you can facilitate them learning to use a spoon for things like yogurt and whatnot. Fine motor skills and appropriate meal behavior can really be built by giving them opportunities to self-feed.

Should you spoon feed a 3 year old? ›

From 2 years It is expected that most toddlers should be able to self feed completely independently with a spoon and fork. They should also be pretty good at it too (4).

What is the meaning of independent learning? ›

Independent learning is a method or learning process where learners have ownership and control of their learning – they learn by their own actions and direct, regulate, and assess their own learning.

What is a teacher centered learning environment? ›

Sometimes called the “Sage on the Stage” style, the teacher-centered model positions the teacher as the expert in charge of imparting knowledge to his or her students via lectures or direct instruction. In this setting, students are sometimes described as “empty vessels,” listening to and absorbing information.

How do you spoon feed? ›

Sit your baby up on your lap using one hand to support your baby's upper back and neck. Bring spoon to your baby's mouth and tip so that the breast milk just touches your baby's lips. It should NOT be poured into your baby's mouth. Your baby will lap the breast milk up by moving his tongue forward.

What is Katori spoon feeding? ›

“Feeding with a spoon and katori has been found to be safe in low birth weight babies this mode of feeding is a bridge between gavage feeding and direct breast feeding”. This is the method used for feeding when the infant cannot latch on to the mother because either the mother or the infant is sick.

Does spoon feeding impede independent learning? ›

Students eventually lack initiative and problem-solving skills because they have not been trained to search for data by themselves (Samah, 2009). Continuing to spoon-feed students in higher education perpetuates the issue of stifling their creative thinking and independent learning.

When should I stop spoon feeding my baby? ›

The expert recommendation is to stop spoon-feeding your baby after the age of six months. At this time, you should slowly let your baby handle foods and attempt to self-feed. Usually, babies are ready to start self-feeding by the age of 6-9 months.

Which is better spoon feeding or bottle feeding? ›

It was found that the preterm babies in whom spoonfeeding was used as a supportive method in addition to breast-feeding switched to full breastfeeding in a shorter time compared to the babies who were fed by bottle and their sucking success was at a better level.

What is spoon feeding vs baby-led weaning? ›

The main difference between baby-led and spoon-fed weaning is the order babies learn their feeding skills. With traditional weaning, babies learn to spoon feed first (smooth mashed food) and chew later. With baby-led weaning, babies skip the smooth food phase and learn to manage lumps and chew from the beginning.

Should you spoon feed a 2 year old? ›

From 2 years It is expected that most toddlers should be able to self feed completely independently with a spoon and fork. They should also be pretty good at it too (4). After they have mastered using a spoon and fork you can introduce a knife at about 2 years of age.

How do I teach my baby to eat with a spoon? ›

First load food onto your child's spoon or fork. Then give the spoon or fork to your child to put into their mouth on their own. Let your child practise often to build their skills. Give your child plenty of praise when they try using a spoon or fork.

What is an unsafe action during cup feeding? ›

There is a risk of choking or spitting up if the feeding is done improperly. There is more wastage of milk due to spilling compares to bottle, tube or syringe feeding. Feeds take longer, and long-term use might develop a preference for it over sucking milk from the breast.

Why do babies need feeding tubes? ›

WHY IS A FEEDING TUBE USED? Feeding from the breast or bottle requires strength and coordination. Sick or premature babies may not be able to suck or swallow well enough to bottle or breastfeed. Tube feedings allow the baby to get some or all of their feeding into the stomach.

What are the main important ideas behind learner centered teaching? ›

Learner-centered education uses interactive strategies to engage the students and develop their abilities. This educational approach helps students develop skills such as decision making and problem solving, team work, and presentation skills that are relevant to the current labor needs.

What is the meaning of independent learning? ›

Independent learning is a method or learning process where learners have ownership and control of their learning – they learn by their own actions and direct, regulate, and assess their own learning.

How does Inge portray industrial revolution in the text spoon feeding? ›

Inge sees this "spoon feeding" in a negative light. He sees lives which are without challenges, a colossal misfortune in essential abilities, and an unmistakable absence of the utilization of our brains. Unexpectedly, this essay was composed in 1903.

Can I spoon feed my 4 month old? ›

Some babies are ready for pureed or solid foods at 4 months, but others are not ready until 6 months. Do not push your child to eat if they're not ready or desiring to eat.

Should I spoon feed my 4 year old? ›

Yes, if you can facilitate them learning to use a spoon for things like yogurt and whatnot. Fine motor skills and appropriate meal behavior can really be built by giving them opportunities to self-feed.

Can I spoon feed my baby at 3 months? ›

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advocates waiting until your baby is at least four months old to introduce solid food. Even better, says the organization, is to wait until your baby is six months old.

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