星期一, 9月 15, 2008

洪蘭和她的兒子

「孩子教得好,大人輕鬆,孩子自己也輕鬆」、「閱讀要從小教起,父母也要從小陪伴,不能要求孩子看書,自己卻在看電視…」

中央大學認知神經科學研究所所長洪蘭,和在美 國就讀 博士班的獨生子曾允中,感情親密得像忘年好朋友。兒子不但從國小開始,就會幫媽媽做家事,直到現在,只要曾允中人在台灣,頭髮一定由洪蘭「親手操刀」替他剪。

真後悔沒多生!
當許多父母感嘆親子關係疏離,和小孩見面說不上幾句話,憂心「不知道孩子心裡究竟在想些什麼?」時;當愈來愈多人選擇當不生育子女的頂客族時,洪蘭卻能驕傲的說:「我們的親子關係很好,很後悔沒有多生幾個…」
洪蘭和兒子的好感情,她現在回頭看,覺得是自己「願意花很多時間」陪伴兒子,一路「陪」出來的。洪蘭很慶幸, 兒子雖然是家裡的獨生子,但從小就會幫忙擦地板、洗衣服、曬衣服,還會自己煮飯、煮麵。
洪蘭還透露,先生曾志朗多年前擔任教育部長時,身上第一次穿著有燙線的襯衫,就是曾允中拿著熨斗,在床上燙出來的。

兒子會幫老爸燙衣服
那時曾志朗因為工作常上電視新聞,兒子的同學看了電視,隔天到學校問他:「我爸的襯衫前面都有一條線,你爸的襯衫怎麼沒有一條線?」
曾允中放學回家後問洪蘭:「為什麼爸爸的襯衫上沒有一條線?」。洪蘭告訴他:「兒子啊,那條線是要燙才會有的…」。由於當時家裡沒有燙衣板,曾允中還把床充當燙衣板,自己動手在老爸的襯衫上,燙出和同學爸爸襯衫上一樣的直線。
出生司法世家的洪蘭,從小就教育兒子要節儉、不能亂花錢。曾允中中學畢業到美國念大學時,雖然在花花世界的紐約獨自生活六年,卻沒有學會泡夜店、追求時髦。洪蘭說,她兒子全身上下沒有名牌,有時還會「撿」表哥穿過的舊衣服來穿。
洪蘭36歲才生下獨子,在當時算是高齡產婦。因為高齡生子,加上她和兒子兩人生肖都屬豬,她的同學還送了一幅匾額,恭喜她「老蚌生豬」。
生產後的洪蘭,每天忙著作研究,她形容寶貝獨子曾允中,是「在實驗室長大的」。曾允中出生沒多久,她就提著嬰兒搖籃到研究室上班;做實驗時,就把兒子背在背上,直到兒子「比較重、背不動為止」。
雖然研究工作忙碌,但洪蘭從獨子還不會認字開始,每天都會在兒子臨睡前,說床邊故事給他聽。洪蘭說,兒子的床邊故事,大部分是她說的;偶爾先生較早回家,也會拿起小手帕演布袋戲,邊說邊演逗得兒子哈哈大笑。
曾允中童年時期的啟蒙書,就從加菲貓這類的童書開始,隨著年紀較長開始學會認字,陪伴他的書變成亞森羅蘋、福爾摩斯等偵探小說。
洪蘭說,閱讀習慣一定要從小開始培養,家長也要陪著孩子看書,不能要求小孩看書,自己卻整晚坐在電視機前看電視。因為從小聽父母念書,曾允中從小到大很少看電視,而且「到哪都會帶書」。
她印象很深刻,有一次和友人一起帶小孩去瑞士旅行,在歐洲的火車上,曾允中安靜的坐在她的腿上聽她念書,朋友年齡相仿的小孩,卻是在火車上追逐嬉鬧。
洪蘭也會技巧性的利用說故事,「引誘」孩子幫忙做家事。洪蘭說,曾允中小時候很愛聽西遊記,常一放學就要洪蘭說西遊記給他聽,有一天洪蘭回答他:「媽媽還有很多事沒做完,地板還沒擦…」。
為了快點聽媽媽說故事,曾允中就主動要求幫她擦地板。洪蘭也沒忘記一忙完家事,就抽空說故事獎勵他。這個習慣養成後,有時曾允中一放學,就追著她問:「今天要不要擦地板…」,她馬上了解,兒子想聽故事了。

求學路艱辛 「媽媽快救我」
洪蘭和先生都是知名學者,但小孩求學的過程卻很辛苦。夫妻兩人剛回台灣時在嘉義的中正大學任教,因為學校還在草創期,於是她把兒子獨立留在台北給媽媽帶。
沒想到她的媽媽管教小孩嚴格,規定放學後要做完功課才能玩。小小年紀的曾允中還是愛玩的年紀,為了玩竟然學會撒謊,外婆不在時就放下功課玩;聽到老人家沈重的腳步聲走近,才開始做功課。結果小學三年級,功課常做到很晚還沒做完。
老人家還告訴洪蘭「笨鳥先飛」,要送小孩去補習。原本在美國沒有功課壓力的曾允中,那段時間經常哭著打電話到嘉義中正大學給洪蘭,哭訴「媽媽快來救我…」。
禁不住兒子的苦求,洪蘭在兒子小四時把他接到嘉義。沒想到,嘉義的小學體罰嚴重,學生犯錯或考試成績不好,就會被打小腿,或是罰頂著椅子半蹲、在操場青蛙跳。

被罵豬頭 兒子要「走回美國」
中文不好的曾允中,還因為考試成績不好,被老師罵「豬頭」、「白癡」。洪蘭說,那時候她兒子幾乎每天哭著說「我要回去美國」,還告訴她「我走也要走回去…」,全然不知台灣和美國之間還隔著太平洋。
就在兒子念小四時,有一天一位同事急急忙忙跑去告訴她,在嘉義民雄的省道上,看到一個很像她兒子的小男孩。洪蘭聽了嚇一跳,急忙打電話到學校找人,老師這才發現,曾允中上完體育課就沒回教室。嚇壞的洪蘭立刻丟下手邊工作,開車衝往民雄省道「尋子」,果然在省道的路邊,看到正要「走路回美國」的兒子。
這件事帶給她很大的衝擊,事後她決定辭職帶兒子回美國,結果夫妻倆還為此大吵一架。曾志朗很生氣,認為是洪蘭讓小孩覺得「有退路」。
因為捨不得孩子的童年,在打罵和功課壓力度過,洪蘭不 顧 先生反對,獨自帶著兒子回美國住了一年。後來因為兒子逐漸長大,開始和同學踢足球,洪蘭發覺很多事情她無法陪兒子做,需要父親在身邊,加上曾志朗不願回美國工作,洪蘭只好帶著兒子回台灣。
因為兒子實在不適應台灣的學校教育,國二那年,她決定讓兒子改念台北美國學校。

沒自信 好成績卻申請三流大學
洪蘭心疼的說,兒子小學時被罵「豬頭」、「白癡」的陰影,讓他直到高中畢業還是很沒自信。高中畢業申請大學時,他明明成績很好,SAT數學還考了滿分,卻只申請一些三流的州立大學。她發現後,才趕在哥倫比亞大學申請截止日最後一天,以快捷郵件寄出申請函,後來她兒子也順利進入長春藤名校的哥大,主攻資訊工程,一路從大學念到碩士畢業。

父母辛苦 要讓孩子知道
「子孫若如我,留錢做什麼?賢而多財則損其志;子孫不如我,留錢做什麼?愚而多財益增其過。」
很多家長為了讓子女生活無虞,從年輕忙碌到老,一生努力工作;自己生活節儉,卻放任小孩盡情揮霍。洪蘭很反對父母親留太多錢給子女,她用清朝禁菸名臣林則徐的家訓,提醒為人父母者,留太多錢財給子女,只會「損志增過」。
洪蘭的兒子念台北美國學校時,同班同學有不少是公司大老闆的小孩,當時某企業老闆的女兒,一個月的零用錢是2萬元。兒子回家告訴她這件事,她就拿出當時的薪水單,告訴他:「你一學期的學費是17萬,我要三個月不吃不喝才夠付」。
還好他的同班同學中,有一人的父母也是大學教授,零用錢也不多。完全沒有零用錢的曾允中,就和這名同學成為好朋友,還常跟著這名同學一起看書,高二時就主動要洪蘭買「失樂園」給他看。
洪蘭從小就教育兒子,父母工作辛苦、不能亂花錢,結果兒子也沒讓她失望。她印象很深刻,有一次已經念中學的兒子向她要錢,到速食店買一客99元的餐點當晚餐,她拿給兒子100元,兒子還把找的1元還給她。
高中畢業後到紐約念書,洪蘭一次就給足兒子一學期的房租和生活費。離家在外的曾允中,不但沒有因為手上有大筆錢就亂揮霍,還為了省下一天四美元的地鐵票,每天早晚各花一個多小時,從租屋處走路到學校。
洪蘭以自己的經驗,建議其他父母親「小時候好好教,比留錢財更重要」。她說,父母親要做的,就是小時候多陪伴,培養孩子好習慣,教給他正確的價值觀,等孩子長大,就可以放心的「放手讓他去打天下」
【聯合晚報╱謝蕙蓮 2008/09/07】

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