I started Primary School in 72. The Primary school buildings were located in the former ancestral hall for the village ancestors, which were turned into a school after the liberation.
The teaching conditions were very backwards at the time. The chairs and tables were very rough, and often missed an arm or a leg. The road to the school was full of potholes, and when it rained, adults had to bring the children to school and pick them up. Naturally, the windows were also in very poor state, and in the winter, when the cold air blew in form the windows, everyone was shivering.
At the time, I was taught by various local people serving as teachers. They had studied in high school or junior high school, and in the village (which was then called a brigade) they were regarded as highly educated people, and so, they worked as teachers. They were very committed to their role. They taught everything: reading, mathematics, music, sports, calligraphy. Sometimes, they even told us a few stories. Of course, they were folk tales. These were the lessons that made us most happy.
The most important textbooks, of course, were the reading textbooks. 课文内容，有忆苦思甜的。有歌颂毛泽东的。有歌颂贫农百姓的。有控诉旧社会罪恶的。中外文化名著，则选入不多。唐诗宋词，也选得不多。孔子和孟子，在语文课本中，成了批判的对象。说明当时课本，还是落后的，政治色彩过于浓厚。
But there were few subjects to learn, and so the homework was also limited. 因此，学生的课业负担，还是较轻的。放学后，要么与小伙伴一起玩，玩的各种花样都有。要么是帮助大人干点家活。有时是自己家里的自留地，我要替自留地上的菜或蕃薯藤，作一些浇水工作。稍大，在生产队忙于夏收或秋收时，我也到生产队干些活，挣一些工分。自然，工分不会很多，只有三四分，因为年龄少，干的活比不上大人。但我们也努力去干，尽量得到大人们的好评。
Most children like to play. Children with a passion for school are rare. I was one of these few exceptions. 许多小伙伴玩时，我却仍然在读书。我喜欢阅读课文，这种阅读给我带来很多乐趣。阅读的速度很快，旁人不知道我在读什么，称我为念书歌，但快速阅读，使我背下了许多文章。像《石壕村》、郦道元的《水经注》，我当时都背下了。
At the time, there was no electric light. We just had a kerosene lamp. 我常常点着煤油灯，学习到晚间很晚的时候。读到认真的时候，头不知不觉地靠近煤油灯，结果头发被烧焦了一大片。当时的煤油，是凭票购买的。由于我喜欢读书，家里的煤油总是不够用。于是只好用其他乡亲索要煤油票。有时天气很寒冷的时候，我仍然坚持读书。想起自己的童年，有一种古人的好学和苦学精神。值得我自己引为自豪。
Getting extra-curricular books was hard. 那时很喜欢听大人讲故事，但他们讲的故事很有限。于是想通过其他途径，获得一些故事书。但往往是失望而归。有一本外国童话小说选，簿簿的，只有一百来页，选入好几篇外国童话，我奉为至宝。可惜后来这本书丢失了。那时还不知道安徒生的名字。也没有读过凡尔纳的《海底两万里》之类的书。但看了许多小人书。看小人书的时候，是最快乐的时光。
昨日，我读了一篇文章，即《儿童节忆童时并反思》，作者是网易博客的网友大松。The article made some comparison between primary school education in the sixties and seventies and primary school education in the current period, 肯定了六七十年代小学教育的一些做法，对当前时代小学教育，却提出了批评。
我觉得大松博友这篇文章的观点，是有其价值的。于是将这个文章的标题，改为《现在的儿童不如六七十年代的儿童快乐》，并发表在强国论坛。After the article was published, it resonated with many users.
In my opinion, there are many problems with the current primary education system. 以应试为中心，使孩子一开始就背上沉重的课业负担，对孩子的成长不利。另外，将孩子关在学校，让孩子远离自然，远离生产劳动，这对于孩子个性的健康发展，也是不利的。
In contrast, in the sixties and seventies, although the textbooks were backwards and the teaching conditions poor, primary education did not put a heavy academic burden on children, children lived in nature, 孩子与生产劳动较多结合，家长对孩子的成龙成凤之心也远没有今天这么强烈，这些客观上都使孩子感受到童年的更多快乐和自由。因而仍然有其可取之处。
What is a very good primary school like?
I think children should live in nature. They should have plenty of time to play. They should have time to take part in simple productive labor. They should have time to read fairy tales. 孩子可以从中形成许多好的生活习惯。 They should be nurtured on music and literature. Between child and child, a fraternal friendship should form. 让孩子从小就学会尊重周围的人，同情弱者，懂得公平正义，懂得做一个有良心的人比升官发财更重要。有时，也让孩子的父母参加课内课外的活动，达到双边互动。
There are no revisions for this post.