Saturday, February 7, 2015

2015 Eastweek Steven Ma: I want to be an Educationist

Title: 我要當教育家
Website: 【東周刊】專欄:蓉蓉樂道 - website
Date: 2015 February 4

When Steven told me he had opened a tuition center with his family, I was not surprised at all because I knew that had been his biggest wish.  Met him way back in 1993 but our close contact was not until early 1999.  That year Steven’s mother passed away leaving Steven inconsolable in his grief, locked in despondency. At his lowest point he read a passage in the chapter on death from the philosopher, Teacher Tang Jun Yi’s book, “Experience of Human Life”《人生之體驗》. “The death of a loved one is an indelible pain. No philosophy can comfort you nor is there any need to look to philosophy for comfort because this pain is part of life [..] This is the period when your own morals will emerge. Henceforth, you will learn to treasure your surviving loved ones with a greater display of love. Henceforth, you will take life with a greater responsibility.” 

Suddenly, Steven saw the light. Teacher Tang’s words had inexplicably enlightened him on the true meaning of life and death. This epiphany alleviated the hurt in his heart. He re-opened the long shuttered windows, welcoming back the sun rays into his bedroom and he got back to work.

The power of written words was that strong.  Thus, "I want to be an educationist” became Steven’s new goal in life.  Steven has no desire to enter politics - his work as an actor remains his primary occupation but outside of that he will focus his energy onto education.  “I like to promulgate education, nothing is more important than education. Education can surmount everything. Education can even surmount politics.”

Steven's family knows his wish. Two years ago his younger sister came across an interesting and innovative teaching material, incepting the idea in her mind to open a tuition center. Seeing the educational benefits of the program, the whole family decided to invest jointly in establishing the “I-Study Learning Center, opting to open their first center in the Tai Wai district in New Territories. The center grew rapidly with its ever increasing number of 400+ students and 20 teachers, and has now outgrown its capacity,  hence, the decision to branch out in Fo Tan. The branch is bigger than the main so can accommodate more students.

Currently, the majority of students in I-Study came from the international schools. The “I” encompasses multiple denotations: be “innovative, be “interactive” and “internet” as a teaching tool. Besides the academic curriculum, the school also actively encourages creativity in their students. The classrooms are painted in different colors such as light green, light pink, light yellow, and it also has a graffiti wall for the students to draw whatever they want, so as to foster a relaxing learning atmosphere for the students.

Steven is very happy and satisfied with the rapid growth of I-Study within the two years.  “The learning center is a joint investment between my relatives and me.  My eldest sister, my sister and my niece manage and run the school business.  They are doing an excellent job.  We hired experienced teachers from Australia and England.  I am the school chancellor responsible for marketing the school. Presently, plans are in place to branch into Shenzhen and other cities in Guangzhou.  Our developmental goal is to branch out into the mainland market." 

Where does Steven Ma place his love? Not on top of the mountain or in the depth of the sea, instead he chooses the path of education.  An ambitious ideal, good!

related 2015 news with pix
Credit mag scan source as labeled

Because of similar info, I did a condensed instead of full translation of Ming Pao article Edition# 2412,  2015 Feb 1 Steven Ma opens tuition center, plans to penetrate China market

【明報周刊】 馬浚偉開補習學校 計劃發展至全中國

Steven Ma and his family members jointly opened the first I-Study Learning Center two years ago. Currently, the center has 400+ students and 20 teachers. The center has become inadequate to accommodate its growth, so a much bigger branch in Fo Tan is opened to accommodate the rapid growth. Together with his family members and the staff members, Steven as chancellor, hosted the center’s ribbon cutting ceremony in its grand opening on January 24 2015.

Steven said his younger sister was the one who came up with the idea to open a tuition center. In the past, his sister tutored students at home, and she came across some excellent mathematics and English teaching materials that expedited students' absorption of lessons. Furthermore, the teaching method is both innovative and fun; a departure from the regular classroom teaching. Without any promotions but through word of mouth from the students’ parents, his sister became a sought after popular teacher.  Hence, she thought of opening a tuition center.  She invited their eldest sister, Steven and her close friend to jointly invest in the business, and hired experienced teachers from Australia and England to teach the students.  And so the first center was established.

Steven: “Actually the center’s name, I-Study, holds different denotations. First: be innovative. We don’t want the teaching to be too rigid. Interaction is encouraged.  Also, we will use internet to teach, such as using the ipad.  We plan to create a webpage soon to encourage ELearning, to interlink learning with the internet so that learning is not confined to the classroom but that the students will have 24/7 support from the center.”  Since their students are mostly from the international schools, the “I” can also denote the students’ international background.

Steven puts great importance in fostering morality in children.  “Morality is very important. Many people know I respect the Confucian school of thought; making new friends is also based on this standard.  Nothing is more important than education.  Education can surmount everything, even surmount politics. I like to promulgate education. In the past I had always hoped to become an educationist, unexpectedly, my younger sister was the one who made the first move, enabling me to take the first step.   Siblings working together, we hope to expand our school business globally outside of Hong Kong.”

~~Below~~in Chinese

馬浚偉與家人合資間辦的「i•study」補習學校,兩年前於大圍開了第一間,如今已有二十位老師,四百多位學生,原校舍不敷應用,故而決定在火炭多開一間分校,校舍面積比母校大很多,可以容納更多學生。日前分校開張,身為校監之馬浚偉偕同學校全體負責人主持 剪綵儀式“。

對於學校在兩年間發展迅速,馬浚偉非常開心。 「其實這是一家人的投資,大姊、妹妹、外甥女負責打理學校業務,我任校監,負責推廣工作,主力放在新界區,而且計劃在深圳、廣州等城市開設分校。把業務推至全國,是我心中的發展目梯標。」


「中心名稱叫i•study其實包合了幾重意義,首先是 Innovative(創新),我們希望教學時不要太死板,要有足夠的Interaction(互動)。另外,我們也會多利用Internet (互聯網)進行教學,如使用iPad,未來也會製作網頁, 鼓勵ELearning,將學習與互聯網掛鈎,令學習並不只限於課室,學生可以全天候二十四小時得到中心的支援。」另一方面,現時他們的教學中心大部分學生來自InternationaI School,所以這「i」也表示學生背景國際化。 

馬浚偉非常注重培育孩子的品德。「德行好重要,很多人都知道我很推崇儒家思想,交朋結友也以此為準則,沒有什麼東西比教育更重要,教育可以凌駕一切,甚至可以凌駕政治。我喜歡推行教育,以前一直希望能做個教育家,估不到妹妹先付諸行動,令我有機會踏出 第一步。骨肉同心,希望能把學校的業務帶出香港,發展邁向國際。」

【東周刊】專欄:蓉蓉樂道 - 我要當教育家
2015年2月4日 00:12





他的心願,親人們全都知道。兩年前因其妹妹覓到一份既具趣味性又帶創意的教材,令她 萌起開補習學校之念頭。見此計劃極具教育意義,一家人決定合資開辦「i study」教學中心,於新界大圍區開了第一問補習學校。


現時i•study教學中心內大部分學生來自International School,所以這「i」表示學生背景國際化,要Innovative (創新),要有足夠的interaction(互動),用Internet (互聯網)進行教學。「除了學術性課程,學校非常着重鼓勵學生創作,課室每間顏色都不同,有粉綠、粉紅、粉黃,又設有塗鴉牆,孩子們喜歡畫甚麼便畫甚麼,令他們在輕鬆的環境下學習。」



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