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The Associate Professor, Kuei-Ju Tsai, held an activity to stimulate intergenerational dialogue

【Promotion of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) series】

Quality Education

【Translator: Yu-Yan Hsieh】

2023-04-19 How to use 20 pieces of paper and one tape to stimulate intergenerational dialogue? Kuei-Ju Tsai, the associate professor of General Education Center of National University of Kaohsiung invited students of NUK and also the members of University for Seniors to join a competition called “青銀見面繪”, which was led by the founder of “Rock Grandparents”, Tsung-Hsien Lin, on April 18th. 

Every group was consisted of all ages of people, and they needed to use 20 pieces of paper and one tape to build “The Tower of Happiness.” The tallest tower without collapsing wins. Building the “The Tower of Happiness” requires understanding the value difference, encourages mature people to think about and plan their third life, and let young people learn the skills of communicating and getting along with middle-aged and elderly people as early as possible.

Kuei-Ju Tsai indicated that Taiwan will enter a "super-aged society" by 2025, when one in five people will be over 65 years old. Plus, the government implemented the "Middle-aged and Elderly Employment Promotion Act" in 2019 to encourage these two groups to participate in the labor force, and re-employment of the elderly will become a trend in the workplace. Therefore, in the future, young students must not only cooperate horizontally with their peers, but also cultivate the soft power of learning and co-creating with different generations across ages.

Kuei-Ju Tsai also said that NUK fulfilled University Social Responsibilities, implemented SDGs. The main participants in this activity are the "SDGs Student Ambassadors" of NUK and the students of University for Seniors. For older adults, intergenerational communication can increase social engagement and promote mental health. For students, co-learning can enhance the awareness of issues concerning the elderly and enhance humanistic care.

The founder of “RockYeNai”, Tsung-Hsien Lin, designed several activities, and “The Tower of Happiness” was one of the games. Aside from asking members to break their echo chamber, every group needed to use 20 pieces of paper and one tape to build a tower in 10 minutes. The tallest tower without collapsing wins.

Differences of opinion also reflected the differences in values between generations, such as prudence and conservatism. Tsung-Hsien Lin uses this to let students experience and observe for themselves. The activation of older manpower is the current trend. In the future, people who are good at working with elder people will be really promising.

Tsung-Hsien Lin has long been concerned about the mental health of the elderly. He upholds the belief of "Activating manpower" to give full play to his expertise in theater art and psychology, and founded the social enterprise "Rock Grandparents." His nickname is Teacher Chocolate, using abundant picture books to train the elderly how to tell a story at elementary schools or kindergartens, and also make some money. Although the number of the money is not quite big, it’s the best inspiration and motivation. By telling stories to make money, grandparents earn not only money, but also a sense of social participation and a sense of accomplishment.

Tsung-Hsien Lin puts forward many views that subvert traditional concepts, such as breaking the myth of raising children to prevent being old, asking the elderly to treat themselves well, and not obsessed with leaving money to their children; take good care of your teeth, because chewing can promote the secretion of endorphins and make people happy. His sharp and vivid analysis of the life of the elderly in the new era not only made the students smile knowingly, but also encouraged them to rethink the third life, get out of the comfort zone, and continue to learn and explore.



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