Music is quite mysterious. People can neither eat it nor wear it, nor can it prove anything with it-it is purely useless.
Songbirds singing can be seen as a need for seeking spouses. But why human beings should regard the vibration created between 16 and 17000 Hz as a demand, as a profession, as a vocation, it is really unexplainable.
What is also inexplicable is why the admiration and admiration of capable people in this field far exceeds that of inventors, commanders in the battlefield, and state activists?
Obviously, human beings have a natural enthusiasm for music. In the caves of Marseille, people have found flutes with a history of at least two thousand years. It seems that without music, human beings can only be incomplete.
The meaning of interest in survival and learning
There are many factors that can drive your learning. I think interest comes first. The rhetoric of no comparison is empty, the first comparison is diligence. We saw that both of the classmates used to sleep and forget food when studying, but one was driven by interest, and the other was driven by utilitarianism. This is a very different study. Those who are interested will get to the heart, and after the other goal is achieved, they will “bye bye” to the things they study hard. Many top scientists, writers, and sports stars have warned us: To do one thing well depends on hard work. This is actually not at all contrary to my point of view. When they say hard work, they say it to those who are interested, that is, they cannot rely on interest alone, but hard work. When the masters speak of “diligence”, interest goes without saying.
The second comparison is IQ. To learn good things, interest or IQ is important? interest. There is a threshold theory, saying that if you want to learn first-class level, IQ without 120 is impossible. But after this threshold, I don’t look at IQ. People with IQ 150 may not be able to surpass those with IQ 120 in the end. After passing the threshold, it is character. Interest is at the top of the character factor. Imagination, autonomy, willpower, these things all have an effect on your learning, not just IQ. Humans have idolized IQ for 100 years. Especially in a school like ours (Beijing University), the people who come in are very high in IQ, but are other qualities, interest, and autonomy strong? Probably because these aspects are weak, the graduates of Peking University have not reached the required height. To learn to play the violin, a hobbyist must practice for 3000 hours to be able to play on stage, and a professional violinist must practice for 10,000 hours. It is really difficult to be able to practice for 10,000 hours. It is impossible to stick to it with motivation and hard work alone. You must have both the spirit of hard work and interest to complete it. And geniuses enjoy it.
What is the motivation of natural scientists? It’s not. If we put the same question to Einstein and Chen Jingrun respectively: In what year and month will your two research results benefit mankind? I conclude that they cannot answer. They don’t know how their achievements will benefit mankind, so why do they still do it? What is their motivation? It is a great interest in nature and the mysteries of mathematics. The most cutting-edge results of mathematics are usually applied to other fields after one or two hundred years, and some have more than a thousand years, and they have never been applied. The benefit of mankind is a by-product of great scientific discoveries. Without interest, the team of scientists will shrink. Compared with the basic theories of natural sciences, social science has a more direct relationship with economy and the people, but it is a little bit.
The positive and negative functions of education on interest development
I think that the purpose and mission of education is to help the educated to have such and other interests, including interest in work skills, but also interest in life, interest in music, art, sports, and interest in woodworking and cooking. and many more. Otherwise, no matter how much money you earn, life will still be boring. I believe that the most important indicator of the success of education is whether the educated has increased his interest in something because of education. If not, education has failed.
How is interest formed? Three words: self-growth. It depends on some conditions. First, you must be free; second, you must be able to be independent; third, you must be able to have more extensive exposure to a lot of cross-disciplinary information throughout the education process to be more likely to stimulate interest. These three conditions should have been commonplace, but unfortunately, in our education today, most students do not get it.
In the past few years, many parents who looked forward to their children and daughters believed that the path to success was to instill knowledge in their children. Today, some parents seem to have come to understand, saying that they can’t treat their children like this, and they must cultivate their children’s interest. They seem to be enlightened, but they actually went from one misunderstanding to another. Why can you cultivate children’s interests? Too overbearing. That is a life experience. What you can help is to expose him to more information, games, subjects, etc. That’s it. Interest is such a subtle and weird thing. Before a child is fascinated by something, outsiders cannot see it, nor can he predict it.
I admire the Japanese preschool education very much. I will talk about a few examples of anthropologists’ observation records. Our current kindergartens have also realized that we can’t just emphasize the work, but only teach literacy and arithmetic. There are laws in foreign countries that kindergartens cannot teach children to read and count. Because the nervous system of a child of this age is still very weak and unable to bear weight, you can make him read and count, and he can learn, but he spends a lot of energy and attention when studying, which affects his character development. The character has a wide range of connotations, including the spirit of self-reliance. When you should learn to wipe your buttocks, you should wipe your buttocks. When you should dress and tie your shoes, you should do it yourself. Also learn to make friends and be fascinated by some games.
In a game class in a Chinese kindergarten, the teacher would say, students, what games do we do in this class? Shoot the ball. The teacher in the Japanese kindergarten said, students, the content of this class is to play games, let’s play. There are toys everywhere in the classroom. You are free to choose and play whatever you like. Even some children don’t want props and just play together. Why let it go? Give the children the chance to choose. When the Japanese kindergarten had lunch at noon, the students on duty announced the recipes of the day. The children take turns taking turns to exercise their speaking ability. Everyone puts together the tables and eats together. After eating, they have to clean themselves and exercise their self-reliance. When eating, the seats are casual, which virtually increases the freedom of the children to choose who to sit with. A boy hits another child, and the teacher is there to watch him coldly, without interfering. The anthropologist asked the Japanese teacher why he did not interfere. She said that I deliberately refrained from discipline, and if I hit too hard, I would pull them away. She also said, can you correct it with a reprimand? This is not the best method. The society of children is interactive, just like the society of adults. It is necessary to grow up and solve problems in the interaction. Sometimes the beaten children go to the teacher. The teacher will tell him the first time, why don’t you resist when he hits you, won’t you yell if you can’t hit him? Every child who is bullied has to learn to resist, and the child who loves to beat others slowly recedes. What kindergarten wants to cultivate is the self-reliance, self-reliance, self-defense, and self-entertainment.
A big problem in the elementary school learning process is to start pursuing high scores at such a young age. Everyone has forgotten that one of the scores design is called passing. Passing is a good thing. How come it becomes rubbish here? Passing is a big hurdle, which is more important than excellent, good, or middle. Parents should be relieved after the child has passed this hurdle. Why do I say that the pursuit of high scores is absurd, because what you have learned in that way must be reviewed once, twice, and three times in order to get a high score. In the first and second grades, some new characters and addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are tested. Even though they were only passing grades from grade one to grade six, in grade five or six, I knew almost every one of the new words in grade one. Then why did you ask me to score high in the first grade? There is almost no cost to pass. High scores have costs. Costs are not only time, but also a waste of feelings and increased boredom. How easy it is to pass, the rest of the time, just let it go and play. By the sixth grade, all the new words before the fourth grade are known. The approach I’m talking about is called bringing the old with the new. When you learn new things, you review the old things unconsciously.
The focus of middle school is the college entrance examination. The only way to get good results in the college entrance examination is to make up for the shortcomings. It is foolish to try to improve the longboard. If it takes a unit of time to make up for the short board, if it can increase by 20 points, the long board can only increase by a few points. A person’s strengths are always his strengths, which is a high probability. But when you continue to make up for your shortcomings, in the end, your interest no longer exists, and you will not be promoted there. High school is a flowering season for a person’s intellectual growth, which cannot be seen before high school because intelligence has not yet developed to this level. In the blooming season, each will show off their talents. Here is a season of killings, and we are all busy making up for shortcomings.
Another question is whether to review in addition to review. If we have a few potential geniuses here, they often disappear in the review. I once said: A potential good horse has been grinding for a year, and it is absolutely impossible to be a great horse in this life. Einstein said that he had been studying for an exam for nearly a month, but he did not get over it for three months. Our entire senior year is a year of review. How long will it take us to get over? What’s more, some people have to repeat their studies, some of them are for admission to university, and others are for admission to Peking University and Tsinghua University. I gave a speech to the teachers and students of my alma mater Beijing No. 8 Middle School. I said that giving ideas to individuals is the most difficult thing, because everyone is different. But I would like to say to some of the best students among you that most of you will be able to enter Peking University and Tsinghua University. But I advise you to abandon Peking University and Tsinghua University and take care of your interest. In my speech, I said that when I was in the third year of junior high school, I was the champion of the 800-meter race in this school. 800 meters to run two laps. Every time we raced, the first lap was too fast and we didn’t dare to fall behind. When we ran the second lap, we were exhausted. I won fourth place in Xicheng District, Beijing. The first lap of that race took 7 seconds faster than the second lap. If the first lap is 3 seconds slower and the second shot is overwhelming, I may be the first in Xicheng District. But no one who ran the first lap together dared to slow down. There is an academic term called “Prisoner’s Dilemma”. I can call this “800-meter race dilemma”.
Everyone has a consensus on advocating general education, but when it comes to answering why it is necessary to promote general education, many answers fail to mention the point. Do general education at this age because you still don’t know where your academic interests are. You are exposed to a wider range of subjects in order to avoid entering an alley as soon as you come up, only to find that you don’t like it at all. U.S. middle school students are applying for universities, not one of the faculties, and they can determine the faculty at the beginning of the third grade at the latest after admission. In the first two academic years, you can listen to the lectures of any department. Is it necessary to promote general education in such a school? There is a wide range of information for students to choose. This is the biggest fulcrum of general education. Qian Zhongshu failed the college entrance examination in mathematics, and Chen Jingrun has no interest in literature and history. What’s wrong? What’s the delay? Mathematician Yang Legao determined the direction of his life at once, but this is not a high probability event. Most students have to discover their interests and determine their own direction through general education. I think this is the principle of general education. And giving everyone broad knowledge is a trivial matter, and I don’t deny it. A person of sixteen or seventeen has long been obsessed with mathematics and poetry. What’s wrong? For this small group of people who are interested in it very early, it does not matter whether they have general education or not.
I am opposed to review that is tiresome, but I am not opposed to it and I strongly advocate reading more. In other words, reading is very different from reading. You don’t have to read most of the books you have ever worked on. Where you attach great importance to it, make a note, make an index, and write a dozen or so words about what you have in mind, how many pages in which book it is, and a vague memory is enough. You should read a lot of books. You can search the Internet to see the annual reading requirements of Harvard, Yale, Oxford, and Cambridge universities for undergraduates and graduate students, which can scare you. Here, there are not many books required to read, and most of the time is spent on review and exams. There is a world of difference between these two ways of reading.
Discover my interest
If it is someone who has come from our normal education, it will sprout interest in high school. In other words, the generation of interest is almost an unconscious thing, just like a young man of the right age, among men and women of the same age, you don’t have to consciously remind yourself. When you find the person you like, you can’t help it. Do you still use reminders? But you came from a test-oriented education environment. At this stage, the first thing to know is that you are too late, you are at a loss for interest, and the problem you face is to make up for it. So, you have to keep reminding yourself: I will find out where I am interested in the next few years. Otherwise, you will probably miss the last train of your choice of interest in your life.
Seize these four years. If you haven’t found your cultural and ideological interest in the four years of university, it will be difficult for you to find it in the future.
The last thing to talk about is how to find your academic interest. You must cherish your various causes and destinies in the next four years on this campus, a good book you have read, a mentor you met, a debater you met, and the big and small problems in your mind. When you encounter these characters, events, books, and problems, you will have some interest in your heart. You must cherish and not let them go with the wind, because these interests will not appear endlessly.
First tell the story. A book usually reads one-fifth of it and you will know if it fits your heart. If it fits, you will increase your attention to it and immediately begin a reading process that is faithful to your interests and serves your own interests. Usually a book can impress you, the probability of this author’s other works impressing you is very high. You immediately check what other works by this author, you have read all of his books, and you are exhausted. In addition, academics are a kind of inheritance, and some of the views in the book particularly touched you. For this, he quoted some other people’s writings, and you should find those books to read. You must read the bibliography at the back of a good book, pick a few from them, and look through them. This process is to “roll your own snowball.” There are many good books in this world, but mediocre books are even more vast. Besides, what is good or bad involves subjectivity. There are a lot of good books, but they have no fate with you. Therefore, there are not so many good books with you. Don’t be swayed by others, concentrate on snowballing for yourself. After four years, if you can have twenty books of your favorite, you are expected to become a talent.
Let’s talk about the second point, the teacher who likes which course is staring at him. There are many teachers, but there are definitely more mediocre teachers than good teachers, and good teachers are only part of you. So if you are interested in a teacher, search for his resume and works, make friends with him, and come up with some weird questions that you think you think are profound, ask him, and try to surprise him.
The third point is to find classmates who share your interests in intellectual life, and the probability of finding them on a university campus is the greatest. Cherish these opportunities in life. You originally have a little interest and are very weak. If you find a like-minded person in this interest, the two of you will discuss it together, and this interest will grow. I have always thought that, whether in middle school or university, the help among students exceeds that of teachers. Because you have been in contact with each other too often, and because there are no shortage of young talents in prestigious schools, these classmates are no less inspiring and nourishing you than teachers.
After all, you are at such an age, and many questions will strike you. We must cherish these questions and work hard to answer them. Don’t believe the answers readily available. Since it has become a question and appears in your mind, it means that you don’t recognize the existing answers very much, and you have doubts, which is too precious. The first is to answer it by yourself. Often you cannot find the perfect answer. You have to ask the second and third questions and keep asking. This kind of inquisitive spirit is called research spirit.
I judge students not to look at their grades. You should be able to find books and read by yourself, choose good teachers and courses, interact with colleagues in your intellectual life, and be able to constantly ask and answer questions. Forming such a habit is on the road and is expected to become a scholar. I wish you an early start.