Chua has accepted, in a way that the good mothers will not, that most children today can’t have it both ways: they can’t have a fun, low-stress childhood and also an Ivy League education.
I agree with Amy Chua. Life is a matter of choices and every choice has a set of positive returns and a set of negative returns. The way I am raising our kids, well, hopefully we are ok with this but I push both of them. I am called as paranoid and many have said that I should let them play a bit more. Yep, tick, they do play and have fun, but at the same time, I keep on showing them that there is much more that they can do. How else are you going to get them to excel? To know their boundaries? For heaven’s sake, I haven't found my boundaries yet and that’s not for the lack of trying either. Also, if you don't push yourself, how do you find out what you don't want to do? Sometimes that is more important than knowing what to do.
Take his internship ideas which I talked about before. Had an idea to give him some international internship experience. He can go to India or USA to work with some of the family / friends and get some experience during his summer holidays. What is extraordinary is how many people say no or have objections to this idea. Very few actually agree to the idea that he can spend 2 weeks out of 6 weeks of his summer holiday improving himself. Including him. But tough, he will be doing this. Why? because he will be the 1 person out of 10000 who can show international working experience on his cv when the time comes for him to apply to Harvard, Oxford or what have you. And lets see, 2 weeks of summer holiday versus a top class education. No contest at all.
Lets put this in another way, I would much rather they regretted how hard they worked as a kid when they are old rather than regretted that they did not work harder when they were a kid. If that means that I have to hear that I am paranoid, pushy and and and, so be it. In the meantime, go read the article which I linked above.
It could be cultural as well, and the socio economic statistics in the USA and UK point out the importance of education. I take the following graph from National Statistics UK.
Who are the top 3 in the lowest exclusion rates?
Ok, so how about people in managerial or professional occupations?
Who are the above average ethnic minorities? So tough titty, kids, be prepared to be pushed.