2.22.2015

《太空戰士六》:第十五話 相鬥

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15.1

天娜把剛才遇見西莉絲的情況完完全全說出來。

可是,在艾卡的立場而言,她與天娜不同,西莉絲是直接指揮帝國軍令費加洛做成傷亡的元凶,故此一直眉頭深鎖,不發一言。

「我知道這是一個無理的要求,我也說不出甚麼原因……」天娜見艾卡無動於衷,轉向洛克說:「但她為了幫我,受到不必要的苦楚……」

正當艾卡想好如何開解天娜,說西莉絲的情況與天娜不同,不必把責任摃上身,洛克卻搶先一步,道:「好吧,等穿過山脈後,我嘗試救她出來吧。」

「你說甚麼?」艾卡連忙叫道。

天娜望向艾卡,畢竟他的支持也是至關重要的。

洛克把艾卡拉到一邊,小聲說:「我明白你對西莉絲的仇恨,但現在最關要緊的是穿過山脈、帶天娜離開。若天娜不肯跟我們走,最危險的是還在退守的費加洛。而且我們要救馬修,也需要引開帝國軍的注意力,那是舉兩得。」

艾卡心想,這的確不是意氣用事的時間,最後點頭同意。

「真的?!」天娜也不敢相信洛克與艾卡會接受這無理的要求,說:「謝謝你們。」

雖然隱藏在老人家皺紋人皮面具下,但天娜天真爛漫的笑容,洛克與艾卡卻完全感覺得到。

15.2

洛克、艾卡與天娜駕著魔導裝甲,依照指示駛進隧道。

三人不約而同覺得十分驚訝,「隧道」的空間比想像中寬廣。

「那根本就是一個地下車站廣場!」洛克小聲說。

只見在空洞中央停著一列列長長的火車,各台魔導裝甲慢慢上車。天頂則開了數個天窗,太陽光透進車站,幾乎不用點燈。

「要麼帝國軍老早就處心積慮要侵略費加洛,要麼阿爾柏古的科技能力高過我們太多了。」見到眼前一切,艾卡也不敢相信。

艾卡把魔導裝甲停在指定的車卡上,正等待出發。洛克便趁機四處打聽馬修與西莉絲的情況,為免重蹈覆轍,艾卡與天娜則留在魔導裝甲等候。

「金髮男?那個以一敵百的人嗎?」

「他應該沒大礙,誰敢動他呢?」

「他在貴賓車廂中。」

「聽說他是費加洛的王儲。」

「基卡夫大人打算請他到帝國相討與費加洛和解事宜。」

「貴賓車廂在第三卡,有十多名衛士把守,想接近也有困難。」

「有安杜羅斯在,基卡夫大人應該沒問題吧?」

原來馬修的事已傳偏整個帝國軍,大家都私下議論紛紛。可是一談到鐵面的西莉絲,各人卻三緘其口,不敢多說半句,直至問到一位本來直屬西莉絲下士才知道其中原委。

「軍中盛傳基卡夫暗中攪局,橫手搶奪西莉絲大人的軍權,捉了好多西莉絲派的軍官。基卡夫又派他自己的心腹在掌握軍中要職,一時人心惶惶,軍中下層士兵只好啞忍。聽說大人被基卡夫以叛徒的名義囚禁在最後一卡……」這時有另一士兵走近,他立刻閉嘴走開了。

之後洛克嘗試接近最後一卡,表面上守衛鬆懈,但卻逃不過洛克多年被追捕的「法眼」,守著最後一卡的是帝國衛士中精英,所佈的陣並沒有死角,要神不知鬼不覺地接近,可謂難若登天。

「二十三號列車將於三十分鐘後開出。」廣播說:「祝酒閱兵儀式會於中央廣場舉辦,請乘坐二十三號列車的人員到中央廣場集合。」

洛克返回艾卡與天娜處,艾卡問道:「情況怎樣?」

洛克搖了搖頭,說:「唯一樂觀的是馬修、西莉絲與基卡夫都在這一列車上。」

15.3

費加洛城中花園。

清草與鮮花發出淡淡幽香。

一個小孩卻哭著呼叫媽媽。

「母后、母后!」

坐在花園中的美麗女性編織著五色布匹,但與她金色長髮相比,五色布也黯然失無光。

「甚麼事?我的乖王兒?」

「馬修又咬我了!」

「小艾卡過來,讓母后看看。」

「是。」小艾卡走到母親身邊。

在小艾卡的肩膀上露出淺淺牙印。

「痛嗎?」母后溫柔地問。

「痛。」小艾卡怪可憐地回答。

「弟弟是喜歡你才咬你的。」母后拿了一些花油,輕輕按摩著小艾卡的肩膀。

「知道。」小艾卡還有點嗚咽,說著。

「那要原諒馬修,好好保護他囉。」

「是,母后。」艾卡嗅到淡淡的花香,慢慢轉醒了。

在艾卡身邊的是化妝成老軍官的天娜。

「那是?」艾卡問道。

「甚麼?」天娜問。

「沒甚麼。」艾卡說。

喬裝成刀疤士兵的洛克回到坐位向艾卡與天娜示意。

列車早開出,駛進完全漆黑的隧道中。

離列車開出已經三小時。

下午六時正。

他們在載客的第五車卡上,找了一個沒人注意的角落商討救人的行動。

「以這速度,要穿過哥魯芝山,還有半小時。」洛克說。

「我們的首要任務是接近第三卡車廂,才能談得上如何救人。」艾卡道。

「西莉絲呢?」天娜機警問道。

「我會去最尾一卡引開敵方注意,好讓艾卡能夠救人。」洛克說:「天娜則先與我一起回到魔導裝甲之上,準備接應我與艾卡。」

「沒錯,留意我發出的訊號,然後開動魔導裝甲。」艾卡說:「照著我所說的指示就行,很容易操作的。」

洛克看到天娜不安的眼神, 對天娜說:「放心,我定能救出西莉絲。」 天娜點了點頭,望向艾卡。

艾卡微微一笑,豎起了母指打了個眼色,三人便分頭行事。

15.4

艾卡推門走出第五卡,來到與第四卡的相連的接駁位上,卻被守在第四卡的衛士截停了:「這是軍官用車卡,請你離開。」

艾卡早有準備,說:「大爺,人有三急,第五卡的厠所滿載了,借個方便,很快便離開。」

「不行!」衛士說。

艾卡掏出一個銀幣,塞到衛士手中:「好人有好報。」

衛士心想,第四卡的洗手間正好在身後,而且要進入軍官的車廂內還要多推道門,應該不會打攪到基卡夫心腹的休息,便說:「好吧好吧,早去早回。」

說畢便推開門讓艾卡進入車廂內。

艾卡進入了車廂的洗手間,雖然列車的厠所本身不大,但第四卡已有一扇小窗,比起士官及士兵階級,算十分整潔舒適。

「軍官用的果然與眾不同。」艾卡笑說。

艾卡一按在手臂上軍服下的按鈕,在兩手䄂中立時伸出了爪子。打開了窗,雙手捉著窗邊,一個閃身,爪子扣在車廂的鐵板上,便由窗鑽出車廂外。

15.5

洛克與天娜來到第六卡,看見第六卡與第七卡之間正有衛士把守。

洛克心中正盤算著如何瞞過衛士進入 運送魔導裝甲的第七卡,這時在背後響起另一把聲音:「士兵車廂的環境為何這麼差,弄得我身上的味也怪怪的?!」

這人正是基卡夫。

跟在後面的卞說:「是是是。人來!快清潔。」

天娜立時緊張起來,洛克把天娜拉在一旁,向她示意:「別動。」

基卡夫與卞並沒有發現洛克與天娜。不一會,列車上的運送兵立刻上前來幫基卡夫刷亮靴子,並噴上香水。

「對對,就是這樣,咭哈哈!」基卡夫笑道:「繼續前進!」

基卡夫、卞與十數個士官便走向第七卡。

「機會來了!」洛克便拉著天娜跟在基卡夫的隊尾,進入了第七卡。

15.6

艾卡以機械雙爪爬到火車頂,鞋頭也伸出小爪子固定身體。像平地爬山一樣一步一步接近第三卡車廂。

「幸好這列火車以魔導力推動,否則由火車頭噴出的黑煙,定要了我的命。」艾卡心想。

不一會艾卡已爬到第三卡車頂。從車頂的天窗往下望,車廂內的情況盡在掌握之中。

只見馬修被三條鐵鏈鎖著,坐在正中央的椅子上,他面對的正是同門大師兄安杜羅斯,四周都是帝國衛士。

雖然看見弟弟被挷起來,但早已回復冷靜的艾卡,靜靜等待最佳的時機,才出手救走馬修。艾卡並不擔心還留在洗手間的「自己」會露出破綻,因為他早已把門反鎖了,也放了發出惡臭的機關,他反而替守門口衛士的鼻子難過。

沉默充斥著車廂,無論是馬修、安杜羅斯、衛士們,還有潛伏在車頂的艾卡。

時間仿佛凝固著。

良久,列車出了哥魯芝山。

月色透入車廂。

打破這種膠著狀態的反而是馬修:「達根師父他說過,他年青時去過東方大國杜馬。」

杜馬為於西比魯山脈的另一端,是拳法家的發源地。

「他為追求最高武術,不惜徒手攀過天柱,也穿過大森林,到達東方文明古國杜馬。他說過,他人生中最開心的日子就是在杜馬忘我地追求武術。」馬修續道。

「但父親也說過,杜馬之行令他失去一切,攀過天柱令他失去了左手,穿過大森林又奪去他的右腳,到達杜馬,他一無所有。」安杜羅斯立刻反駁,但語氣明顯軟化下來。

馬修看著安杜羅斯,在安杜羅斯的眼中,馬修覺得事情並不是這樣簡單,因為安杜羅斯彷彿還愛著他的父親、達根師父。「安杜羅斯,你……」馬修說。

「不要說。」安杜羅斯道。

這時列車忽然發生劇烈震動,急停煞,車卡內的人突然東歪西倒,安杜羅斯雖站得穩,也不免一手抓著扶手。

15.7

艾卡就等待這個時間一躍而下,藏在斗蓬的機械弩早向沒有防避的衛士射去,衛士們都應聲倒地,而袖中的爪子而向安杜羅斯攻去。

「哥哥!小心!」單看身影,馬修就認出艾卡來。馬修一下反手,挷著他手的鐵鎖亦應聲而卡。

艾卡第一時間不是解除馬修的束縛,而是攻擊安杜羅斯,因為艾卡早已知道馬修已經鬆綁了,只是要製造空隙給馬修。

馬修亦箭步上前,後發先至,與艾卡形成夾擊之勢。

可是安杜羅斯像是預計之內,一閃一檔,並沒有硬接艾卡兩兄弟的攻擊,反而隨勢來到窗邊,道:「後會有期。」拋下一句,便破窗而去。

馬修飛撲上前,但只能眼白白目送安杜羅斯跳出列車,剛好跌入渡河之中。

當馬修轉個身來,一道藍光由車尾橫掃而來,但另一道光幕卻檔在艾卡與馬修身前,藍光折射而去。

「哥哥,這是?」馬修疑惑地說。

「反射術!是天娜。」艾卡道。

在這時車卡天花隆隆一聲,天花應聲爆開,只見天娜駕駛魔導裝甲前來。

天娜打開駕駛艙門,叫道:「艾卡!」

艾卡正想稱讚天娜來得正是時機,馬修卻發覺有點不對勁。

「哥哥……」馬修道。

艾卡這時亦發覺剛被艾卡擊倒的衛士屍體發出藍光,而且有些還開始想站了起來。

其中一個屍體突然撲向艾卡,幸好馬修及時使出一個「鐵山靠」,把屍體吹飛了。

「快。」艾卡心知不妙,一手捉著馬修,另一手射出了鐵索,抓著魔導裝甲,艾卡與馬修應聲而起。

只見屍體們撲向衝進來查看發生甚事的帝國軍,狠狠地咬著士兵的咽喉。

進入了駕駛室的艾卡、馬修看著這樣的情景都不寒而慄。

「發生了甚麼事了?」艾卡自言自語。

突然列車另一下猛烈震動,列車再次開動,魔導裝甲再也站不穩,從車上掉入河中。

8.20.2014

正義第5-1講:受僱上戰場


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課程︰《正義︰一場思辨之旅》
講者︰Michael Sandel
出版︰公視 DVD


「我哋食飯有乜問題?」[1

人人天天工作,為的就是糊口。根據聯合國人權公約,食飯也是人權的一種[2],遊行後請食飯,有甚麼問題?馬丁路德金遊行都請食飯;香港某政治團體遊行也請食飯;請食飯根本就是香港遊行文化!

工作後獲取報酬與派救濟糧食給飢民當然是沒有問題,但遊行後請食飯是否有問題,就要考慮遊行的性質是甚麼。若果遊行是一種工作,當然在付出勞力後應有合理回報,甚至沒有回報的勞動是不合理的。白做、「九」做的情況之所以出現,一是勞動者愚蠢,一是出資者無良。我們會有這樣的直覺,是因為回報才是勞動的目的,若有其他方法獲得相同的報酬而不需要勞動,絕大多數人都不會拒絕,要引證這種說法之正確,可以在新年時多祝賀人「不勞而獲」便會一清二楚。

若果遊行是一種人道災難,遊行就不應該只是請食飯,而更要文明大國空投糧食物資,政府應該復古開糧倉救濟災民。因為食飯權是基於每個人都應該值得尊重,應該生活得有尊嚴的前提下而做,而非錦上添花。沒有一個國家敢公開聲稱要救濟全球的首富,只有平民百姓懷疑政府把利益送到大財閥的手中造成官商勾結等事情發生。

遊行既非工作,因為說沒有問題的人正正就認為遊行、佔領等行動會影響經濟,浪費社會資源,若遊行可以成為一種工作,有其巿場價值、對社會有貢獻,就應該每個星期都做、天天做;遊行亦非人道災難,事實上我們亦看不見萬人跑後選手們會留在街頭上輪候派米的情景,只見附近各大酒樓人山人海。

那麼馬丁路德金與某政治組織是否也應受到責難?就要視乎所提供的食物是一種援助還是一種利誘。
若是一種援助,即示威人示因其經濟社會地位而無法獲得他本來就應該有的表達自己訴求的權利,例如住天水圍天橋底的露宿人仕,為他提供恰當合理的交通是可以理解;例如示威者要三天三夜留守某個地方,為他們提供基本的膳食也是情有可原。但若是一種利誘,即示威人仕可能在無知及非情願的情況下因為回報吸引而參與,例如不知道遊行的目的為何,或是受工作上、生意上或人際關係的壓力而來,食飯只是一種補償。

那利誘有甚麼問題?可能遊行的那個人又清楚遊行的目的、又支持遊行的理念又沒有甚麼壓力下來遊行,食一餐飯有甚麼問題?

那問題在於遊行的正當性,利誘只會令遊行腐化,產生不公義。正如Michael Sandel 對於反對全募兵制的理由,以公民品德與共善而言之。所有公民對於這個社會都有責任,事實上這個責任是不單是當兵、交稅或當陪審員,還應包括令社會變好的政治參與。

若果遊行示威是一種公民品德及共善的一種表現方式,利誘就是賄賂,把遊行變成商品,遊行人仕就是政渣的斂財工具。若真的要把遊行食飯變成一種香港特色的文化,那只會是把香港社會毒死的黑心文化。

2]經濟、社會、文化權利國際公約第十一條二:「人人享有免於飢餓的基本權利」

5.21.2014

正義第4-2講︰所謂兩相情願


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課程︰《正義︰一場思辨之旅》
講者︰Michael Sandel
出版︰公視 DVD


多年前寫過一篇關於〈同性戀是否不正常?〉的文章,在多事之秋的今天看來,是別有一番感覺。在此不想在雜亂無章的討論中加上一腳,而只是在問一個更原則性的問題︰「在民主政府之下,私人空間在何等程度上應受到尊重?」

John Locke而言,民主政府即在state of nature的人為了脫離這戰爭的狀態而達成共識所成立的政府,這個政府之所以成立,其目的就是保護天賦的人權[1]。而所謂天賦的人權,明顯就是在指state of nature下人們早已擁有但不能放棄的「生命、自由與財產」。

這就與我們一般認為「我擁有我自己」的直觀有些出入,一般認為「我擁有我自己」是包括「擁有放棄生命的權利」,但若「生命」是不能放棄,則連「自殺」在道德上也都是不被允許的。

事實上,「你擁有生命但不能放棄生命」可能比較難去理解,但「你擁有自由則不能放棄自由」可能就較容易明白。你可能會說︰「我可以賣身給別人成為奴隸,或甚可以把自己困在獄中。」但是,你賣身及進入牢獄之中的決定就證明你還是自由的。[2]故此,以極端言之,一個民主政府不能投票放棄民主體制,縱使出現百分之百的投票率及同意。[3]

如果,民主政府的首要任務就是保障人權,那麼交稅、服兵役或甚至立法禁止吸煙是如何可能呢?所謂民主程序的授權,有何種界限呢?[3]

[1]嚴格來說是自然權利,但用天賦人權較容易理解。
[2]這種說法可能有點存在主義的色彩︰「自由是命定的」。
[3]除非返回state of nature,否則現階段來說,沒有其他政體比民主政府更能保障人權。

5.20.2014

正義第4-1講︰這是我的土地


http://big5.cri.cn/gate/big5/gb.cri.cn/27224/2013/10/09/3465s4277845.htm


課程︰《正義︰一場思辨之旅》
講者︰Michael Sandel
出版︰公視 DVD

由之前釣魚台到最近越南反華暴亂;由遠至烏克蘭克里米亞危機至最貼身電影竊聽風雲丁權問題,此中都有一個共通點,就是認定「這是我的土地。」

若果我的身體、我的時間、我的勞動是由「我擁有自我」這寸步不能讓的原則推論出來,那麼我所擁有的財產、我所擁有的土地也是神聖不可侵犯。那甚麼才是「我的財產」呢?哪些土地才是「我神聖不可侵犯的土地」呢?

John Locke認為在state of nature中,要把自然物化成自己的「財產」,就必須符合以下三個條件的其中之一。「1) one may only appropriate as much as one can use before it spoils. 2) one must leave “enough and as good” for others, and 3) one may only appropriate property through one's own labor.[1]

故此,在越南對出南沙礸探油田,並宣稱這是行駛中國主權的一部份,那就不是全無道理,但是state of nature亦是等同於在法律以前的戰爭狀態,在廿一世紀的國際關係而言,這又是否恰當呢?在釣魚台的問題上,中國的宣稱,又有多少實際的作用呢?烏克蘭是一個很好的借鏡,若沒有作為戰爭的心理準備,俄羅斯是不能吞併克里米亞,而美國與歐盟的軟弱,令其偽文明的侵略發生了。那就好像說,武力是使其成為公義的必要條件,歷史是由勝利者寫成的。

公義當然不是這樣,起碼在道德直覺而言。

香港的居住問題嚴重,現在大部份人工作勤勞工作一生也不能擁有自己的居所,但有些人卻可以天生就擁有自己的土地[2],這樣公平嗎?但一旦取消這個不平等,又可能涉及原居民武力悍衛「祖宗留下來神聖不可侵犯的土地」。

問題是︰「那些土地有多神聖?」亦事實上等於問︰「為甚麼要交稅?」而最終極的問題卻是在挑戰︰「你是否真的擁有自我?」

[1]http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/locke-political/#Pro
[2]這種說法只是粗略印象而言,不能太認真。若以一個中等月收入3萬的家庭而言,幸運地工作30年的話約有1080萬,不吃不喝的話都可以買到一間800尺的住宅;另外亦聽說擁有丁權的人數眾多,土地有限,要建成丁屋亦可能要排十幾年隊。

5.04.2014

《太空戰士六》︰第十四話 同門

(圖片來源︰wikia)


14.1

由魔導裝甲的主炮引起的爆風還未完全消散,只聽到有人在拍著手說︰「氣功炮。威力真的非同小可。」

說話的聲音似遠還近,一時三刻叫人摸不到那人的真正位置。

金髮男子一下吸氣,怒吼聲一響,居然把所有由暴風帶起的沙塵吹散:「安杜羅斯!你這個費加洛的叛徒!不但殺死自己生父達根師父,還投靠敵人!不要做縮頭烏龜!給我滾出來!」

一個銀髮男子從遠處慢慢走近,回應說:「那個貪慕虛榮的老傢伙,出賣傳統,居然把秘傳的絕技傳給你這個野王子!」

「費加洛……野王子?」艾卡像是明白了甚麼似的。

「那根本就是因為你心術不正,達根師父才把秘技傳給我。」

「因為他認為你還會有朝一日會成為費加洛的國王,為討好你,才傳給你!」銀髮男子說。

「不是這樣的!」金髮男子反駁說。

「艾卡,金髮男子是……?」洛克也聽出過中端倪,向艾卡說。

只見艾卡口中唸唸有詞,與平日一向冷靜的他有明顯不同:「馬修,馬修。」

洛克見艾卡未能克制,有打算上前與其相認。但那只會破壞原初的計劃,前功盡廢。

洛克擋在艾卡的前面,阻止他進一步行動,並說:「讓我來。」

14.2

天娜走進白色帳篷,站在被倒吊的西莉絲面前。

「誰?」西莉絲問道。

天娜不敢作出任何反應,怕會被拆穿。

西莉絲張開眼睛望著天娜。

雖然西莉絲隔著面巨,而天娜又喬裝成老兵,但與西莉絲的目光相接後,天娜覺得好像被西莉絲看穿自己的真正身份,感覺就如脫光一樣,立時有逃走的衝動。

「想不到會在這種情況與妳相遇。」然而西莉絲閉上眼睛,好像若有所思。

天娜不明所以,但卻放棄離開的念頭。

「我所擁有的魔導之力,雖以人工後天植入,與天生就擁有魔導之力的妳而言,有著天壤之別,然而兩者同質共源,引起的共嗚感,是化妝易容也掩飾不來的。」西莉絲頓了頓:「你我本就自幼就在魔導研究所中長大,但卻從未碰面。想不到史杜博士幾經辛苦才能把妳從魔導研究所救出來,卻被基卡夫搶走作他的武器。」

天娜確定西莉絲已認出她來,但聽著西莉絲訴說自己的身世,不敢打擾,只更呆呆地一動不動。

「基卡夫只會使陰謀詭計,就是誤信他的情報,我才落得如此下場。而你這洋娃娃更把波蘭多害死了,他可是與尼奧同樣硬漢子。」西莉絲說。

天娜心想:「難道西莉絲還以為我被帝國軍操控著?」

果然,西莉絲接著如此說:「 基卡夫叫你來,究竟有甚麼目的?莉莉絲!」

「我並不是莉莉絲!我的名字是天娜!」不知為何,天娜衝口而出。

14.3

一瞬間把三台魔導裝甲打倒地上的馬修,立時再成為帝國軍攻擊的對像,增援的士兵及魔導裝甲倍增。

然而見識過連主戰型魔導裝甲的主炮都不能動他分毫,帝國軍的士兵只在外面重重包圍著馬修與他對峙著的同門安杜羅斯。

眾人都在等安杜羅斯動手才一湧而上。

「你的弟弟是人來的嗎?」洛克笑道。

「那要你管?」艾卡反駁。

洛克與艾卡乘著帝國軍增援混入了包圍網中。

「達根師父其實是想把絕技傳給你的,若你肯回心轉……」馬修說。

「我不要再聽你的廢話!」安杜羅斯一擺架勢,便隔空出了一拳。拳風形成氣流,直撲馬修。

拳風雖快,但以馬修剛才的表現,眾人還以為他會輕易閃避。可是馬修不但沒有閃避,更沒有防禦,拳風中個正著。

這一下來得更突然,帝國軍沒有一個敢動。

拳風中個正著,卻沒有大礙,馬修的臉只有小許紅腫,他說:「滿意了嗎?」

然而安杜羅斯沒有領情,反而更大火了,怒道:「你敢小看我?!」立時衝向馬修,連環出了三拳。

「是連環轉身腳!」馬修暗讚一聲,不慌于忙,以手檔格。

安杜羅斯如馬修所料,並沒有停下來攻勢,緊接著使出一記高位旋風腿。

馬修一下低頭,輕易避開了旋風腿。

二人同是師兄弟的關係,對方的招數也相當熟練。現在同門相鬥,像演武多於對決,一時三刻也難分出勝負。

借著反動旋風腿的去勢,把勁力從腳傳到腰,再由腰傳到雙臂。安杜羅斯扭動並擊出雙拳,把原來擊拳的威力倍增。

「雙虎烈破!」安杜羅斯暗叫一聲。

14.4

馬修不敢硬接,以雙手護著胸前,後跳瀉力。但力度比想像中猛烈,馬修被彈到數米之外。

馬修一個後空翻受身著地,沒有大礙。

「不愧是父親大人賞識的男人!」安杜羅斯暗暗心道︰「他這樣全力採用守勢,很難找到他的破綻。」大聲說道︰「國王已死, 良禽擇木而棲,費加洛城已破,何不投入亞爾柏古,成就一番大業?」

果然,馬修登時由冷靜變得激動,震聲道︰「費加洛……哥哥是不會死的!」

馬修一下馬步,身體座下,擺出架式。

馬修運起全身力氣,一箭步,單虎掌擊出,有迅雷不及掩耳之勢。

猛虎硬爬山。

可是安杜羅斯早已看穿,使出「雲手•雙掌破」,扭著閃過虎擊,順勢在攻向馬修小掩處。

洛克早見馬修情緒突然波動,心知不妙,這刻見情況危急,二話不說飛撲出去。驟眼看來與安杜羅斯圍攻馬修,但安杜羅斯一下反技,剛好被洛克撲過正著。

「礙手礙腳!」安杜羅斯把攻勢轉向洛克,抓緊在空中的洛克衣領,一下轉身「雷震入林」把洛克拋向馬修。

馬修這時已收起「猛虎硬爬山」的勁力,打算把洛克「擋下來」。

然而洛克比馬修想像中靈活得多,在空中止著了去勢,非但沒有撞上馬修,反而順勢跳到馬修身後,以擒拿手法捉著馬修。

以馬修的力量本來可以輕易掙脫,但洛克在馬修的耳邊說︰「別動,艾卡已潛入軍中。」

馬修一呆,這時其他帝國軍一擁而上,馬修只好捒手就擒。

14.5

「天娜?不要笑死我了,這個世界上天生就擁有魔導力的只有妳一人。」西莉絲說︰「被基卡夫以操縱之輪控制著,哪會有自己的名字……難道?」

西莉絲再次睜開眼睛,望著天娜。

這次天娜不甘心示弱,與西莉絲對望。

「果然!」西莉絲說。

此時帳外傳來人聲,看守的護衛像是回來了。

天娜暗叫糟糕,不知如何是好。

「快快躲在前方角落鐵柱,等我指示。」西莉絲說。

天娜照著西莉絲的話,走到鐵柱後方躲起來。

守衛還未掲開帳門,西莉絲便高聲叫道:「基卡夫!你這個不仁不義的狗賊!快放開我,我要見皇上陛下!」

進來的衛士一下被西莉絲引開了,沒有注意到天娜的存在,走到西莉絲面前說:「想見皇上陛下?基卡夫大人才不會愚蠢到放虎歸山。先讓我倍你玩玩。」

衛士奸笑一聲,便用手中鞭子揮打西莉絲,西莉絲立刻皮開肉裂。

可是西莉絲沒有哼半點聲音,還帶點諷刺的口吻說道:「你還未吃飯嗎?與魔導研究所中的訓練相比,實在像抓痕。」頓了頓,續道:「走開!我不想見到你這小人物。」

天娜知道西莉絲向自己說話,悄悄溜到帳門前。

衛士見西莉絲小看自己,火上心頭,再揪打兩鞭。

天娜看著西莉絲因為幫自己而受皮肉之苦,一時於心不忍,停了下來。

西莉絲見天娜有所猶豫,便大聲喝罵:「還不快走?!難道要等基卡夫來嗎?」

天娜只好黯然離開。

14.6

天娜離開西莉絲的帳篷後,回到魔導裝甲的停泊處。

剛好艾卡與洛克也由哨站回來。

「以馬修的能力,雖被帝國軍捉著,應該沒有大礙。帝國軍奈他不何。」洛克安慰艾卡說:「等我們通過隧道後,就會營救馬修。」

「但願如此。」一到與馬修相關的事,艾卡便立刻少了當費加洛國王時應有的英明決斷風采。

這時,洛克也注意到,除了艾卡外,還有另一個人在悶悶不樂。

「天娜,怎麼了?」洛克説。

天娜望著洛克,一時也答不上話來。

艾卡心想也擔心不得那麼多,很快便從低谷振作起來,向洛克問道:「怎樣?」

「請也救出西莉絲吧!」天娜忽然說。

「甚麼?!」洛克與艾卡二口同聲說。

第十四話   完

3.29.2014

《太空戰士六》︰第十三話 闖陣

(FFshrine.org)


13.1

艾卡、洛克與天娜坐在剛剛捕捉的魔導裝甲之上。

三人分別穿上帝國軍的軍服,並喬裝成帝國軍。

「不愧是汪洋大盜,真懂得化妝逃過軍方的追捕。」艾卡笑說。

洛克白了艾卡一眼,說︰「是易容術。而且我是寶物獵人,不是甚麼汪洋大盜。」

「不都是一樣。」艾卡說。

天娜看著鏡子,完全認不得鏡中的自己。她套上洛克自製的人皮面具,活像一個老軍官。

「若有人向你說話,不需要回應他,只要板起臉望著我們就行。我們會為你解圍的。」洛克道。

易容後的天娜,外表是無懈可擊,但是若在言語及行為上,卻難掩女兒家的神韻。

「只要坐著別動就好。」天娜提醒自己道。

「嗯。」洛克則像一個中年身經百戰的士兵,像天娜的副手在她身旁。

「那為何要我當新兵?」艾卡駕駛著魔導裝甲,忽然抱怨起來。

「古老機械文明王國的承繼人,扮演魔導裝甲的駕駛員不是很合適嗎?」這次到洛克反擊說。

天娜聽到二人又鬥氣起來,不禁笑了。

「天娜。」洛克提示道。

「只要坐著別動就好。」天娜再提醒自己道。

「來了。」艾卡說。

天娜聽見艾卡如此說,眼看到一大隊魔導裝甲迎面而來,立刻緊張起來。

這表示就快到達帝國軍的大寨。

天娜四平八穩地坐著,艾卡把魔導裝甲停下來,與洛克一同站起身來向魔導裝甲隊伍行禮。

魔導裝甲大隊上的軍官沒有理會天娜等人,駕著魔導裝甲離開了。

天娜輕輕呼了口氣。

洛克與艾卡坐下來,繼續上路。

13.2

穿過林木區,來到剛剛從遠處看到的費加洛山脈隧道前的大寨。大寨的圍牆以附近砍伐的大樹與泥土建造,雖算臨時性質,但已有效地防止敵人潛入。

只見大寨有三數個出入口,都由二部二足型魔導裝甲及數個步兵守衛,紀律嚴謹。

「想不到守衛如此森嚴。」艾卡嘆道。

「不要只是讚賞敵人。」洛克說︰「先過這關再說。」

艾卡把魔導裝甲停在哨站前。

「通行證。」哨兵問道。

洛克立刻遞上一本皮革製作的小簿。

「你們是?」哨兵望著通行證再望望艾卡說。

「五連第一隊,巡邏完畢。」艾卡答道。

「唔。」哨兵與身邊的士兵小聲說著。

天娜擔心哨兵沒有反應,是不是出了甚麼亂子。這時的心跳得很快,不用把脈,心跳機乎隔空可聞。

「我們可以進去了嗎?」洛克見哨兵沒有反應,催促道︰「基卡夫大人等著我們的。」

哨兵聽見基卡夫的名字,立刻驚慌起來,生怕他會怪罪,立刻開閘放行。

天娜正舒了口氣之際,哨兵忽然向天娜問道︰「今晚的口令是甚麼?」

天娜一時也不能答上話來,只睜大眼睛望著洛克與艾卡,心亂如麻。幸好洛克機警,搶著道︰「天滿,落日,源國。」然後小聲向哨兵說︰「今早老傢伙無端端給基卡夫大人罵得一面是屁,心情很差,請大兵哥體諒。」

哨兵像是心同感受,說道︰「快行快行。」

艾卡二話不說便開動魔導裝甲進了大寨。

「你剛才對哨兵說了甚麼?」艾卡好奇問道。

「基卡夫的壞話。」洛克笑道。

13.3

艾卡等人進入大寨不久,正不知到哪兒報到進入隧道。

「基卡夫你這個烏龜王八蛋,你給我出來。」在剛才進來的哨站傳來某人的高聲叫罵。

「這才是真正的說壞話。」艾卡說。

帝國軍的士兵突然緊張起來,不斷有士兵前往增援。

洛克初時不以為意,但增兵速度慢慢加速,甚至有主戰型魔導裝甲加入。洛克心感不妙,捉著一名士兵問過究竟。

「有費加洛正在闖陣。」士兵回答說。

艾卡心想已指示老將軍留在星之丘待命,這一帶還有哪一個師團?轉念又想:「難道有綠洲的不聽號令?假冒費加洛軍?」

「敵方一多少人?」洛克如艾卡肚中的蟲子,知道需要更多資訊作判斷。

「只有一人。」士兵爽快地回答。

「甚麼?」洛克與艾卡異口同聲道。

13.4

艾卡與洛克把魔導裝甲停在一旁,天娜則留作看守,然後二人到哨站看過究竟。

在哨站對出,三架二足型魔導裝甲把那一個人團團圍住,較外圍的有二隊士兵準備,而二部主戰型魔導裝甲則守在大寨的門口作最後防線。

「這種規模足以輕易把一個連的費加洛步兵完全殲滅。」艾卡小聲對洛克說。

但是帝國軍只是圍著那人,卻沒有進攻的意慾。而那人雖擺著架勢,也只是等待敵人。

「他在養精蓄銳,面對一整隊帝國軍,他不會白白浪費氣力。」洛克道。

這種拉緊的氣氛,被其中一架二足型魔導裝甲所打破。它按捺不住衝上前揮拳攻擊,其餘二部像是意想不到,雖然也一擁而上,但也慢了半拍。

只見那人不慌不忙,緊緊避開魔導裝甲的鐵拳。然後跟著拳勢轉身,雙手捉著,把自己作為支點,居然把整台魔導裝甲拋上半空。

這時第二台魔導裝甲已到,那人一個閃身,魔導裝甲撲了個空,失去了平衡,倒在地上。

拋上半空的魔導裝的墮落點正是後上攻來的第三部,兩部魔導裝甲撞上後火花四濺。

只短短數秒,三台魔導裝甲便全部擊破。魔導裝甲況且如此,血肉之軀的帝國軍士兵更當然不敢接近。

艾卡與洛克看得目定口呆,難怪帝國軍會如此緊張。

那人站起身來,說:「把傷者先帶走。」

少了魔導裝甲的遮擋,艾卡與洛克較清楚看著那個人。

他束了一把長長的金髮,身上只穿了件湖水南色的背心,露出了他健碩的身材。

「很面善……」艾卡自言自語。

然而,帝國軍沒有領金髮男子的情,在後面的主戰型魔導裝甲突然發難,主炮閃出強光。

「糟糕!」艾卡忘記了自己潛伏的身份,破口而出。

的確,那個人是不是盜用費加洛的身份已無關重要,反而艾卡欣賞他的膽色與材能。

所以不自覺替他擔心起來。

但見他只吐了句「卑鄙」,便雙手在腰間作了個球狀的手勢。

說時遲,那時快,主炮的閃光直飛金髮男子,而他把雙手同時擊出,作虎咬的姿勢。光束居然給他截停了,並發生爆炸。

爆風揚起沙塵,但仍隱約可見他沒有半點受傷。

「龍珠嗎?!作者的創意去了哪兒了?」

「你說甚麼?」艾卡問洛克。

「沒甚麼。」洛克反問。

13.5

天娜留守在魔導裝甲上,照著洛克的說話,雖然聽見來自哨站的激烈戰鬥聲,但一動也不敢動。

正在趕往支援的帝國士兵經過,看見天娜沒半點反應,便生氣地說:「老人家還不快來幫手?!」

天娜無奈地走下魔導裝甲,並打算與洛克及艾卡會合。

然而經過一個全白色的大帳篷時,卻讓天娜踝足不前。

那平平無奇的帳篷,散發出一種熟悉的氣息,天娜被深深吸引著。

天娜小心冀冀走到帳篷前,左顧右盼,確認沒有人留意自己,也沒有守衛,才靜悄悄揭門而進。

一進帳篷,感覺比在外面觀看時大上一倍,在四支鐵柱落在四個角落,並用鐵鏈與中央的一支直上帳篷的頂端鎖在一起。

鐵鎖的另一端是被人倒吊在中央鐵柱,戴著鐵面巨的金髮女戰士。

「鐵面的西莉絲!」天娜暗叫一聲。

第十三話   完

3.28.2014

Why IT in education is so important in special school?

http://media.victoriaadvocate.com/img/photos/2012/01/07/kb_vine_school_01xx12_31b_163527.jpg


“Students, teachers, schools and other stakeholders will use IT effectively as a tool for enhancing the effectiveness of learning and teaching, with a view to preparing our students for the information age, turning schools into dynamic and interactive learning institutions, and fostering collaboration among schools, parents and the community.”(EMB, 2004)

In normal setting, IT is used mostly as information retrieval, and then knowledge enquiry communication, and then collaboration, and finally, very little as an analytical personal development tool.

However, the priority in special education may be different. It is because their abilities, but the most important is, when we need to satisfy the student’s special needs; we strongly need help by parents and community.

Nowadays, transdisciplinary (or collaborative) teamwork model is running in special schools. There is not only “Different perspectives lead to better decision-making; no one discipline can provide everything that a child and family needs.”(Kilgo J. L., Aldridge J., Denton B., Vogtel L., Vincent J., Burke C., & Unanue R.)

So, parents should be one of the member when we call meeting about teaching and learning for each of the student. Not only because parents have “best understanding” about the students, but also the primary role of parents is to encourage and support students to plan and achieve their educational goals. Parents also should encourage students to develop independent decision-making and self-advocacy skills.

So, as a communication tools with parents, IT can play the very important role that is everytime, everywhere connect with parents and sharing information.

Another function of IT in special education is as an analytical personal development tool. Not like normal setting, special schools have no test or very few writing assessment. How we assess our students learning progress? Mostly using observation and record whether they can finish their given tasks. So, you can imagine that the information and records just like a hill. To have better analysis the student’s development, IT would give the most help. For example, one of my student need to have toilet training, we would like to record when and how, so database is useful to analysis the progress. In short, Database can individualize the intervention to fulfill different educational needs.

“The majority of teachers expressed confident of basic IT skills, such as word processing, use of spreadsheets, presentation software and Internet usage. But they are least certain about advanced multimedia design and WebPages production.” and “…simply replacing chalk and board by multimedia presentations/animations.” (EMB, 2004). However, in special school, drawing the student’s attention to teaching and learning is the most difficult task. “Multi-media simulation” and “non-error interaction”[4] is powerful teaching and learning elements to students.

Then, I would to specify three topics to illustrate how IT in education fulfills its function by some activities.

In special education, we mostly concern how to satisfy the special educational needs of our students. To specialize and to make the discussion more realistic, I would like to introduce one of my students, KaPo. He is a 17 years old boy with moderate mentally handicap.

KaPo’s case is very typical in my school. Autism is called “Autism spectrum disorder” as its full name. As the name says, Autism has no clearly defined single syndrome (Wing, 1996) and no two children with autism have identical characteristics (Koegel, Koegel, Frea & Smith, 1996; Wong & Westwood, 2002), it covers a wide range of behaviors and abilities, and it is a matter of degree, from mild to severe. However, children with autism typically have difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, interactions and leisure or play activities (ASA, 2005). As the above report mentions, KaPo has behavioral and emotional problem, too. He cannot concentrate to do the given tasks. Actually, he also has some stereotyped behavior patterns to bother his learning, for example, hand flapping, clapping and always washing his hand.

Teaching self-management has been effective at improving a variety of behaviors, including appropriate vocational (McNally, Kompik & Sherman, 1984), and even generalization (Koegel, Koegel & Parks, 1996).

The model is called “teach the individual” model, in which the generalization occurs spontaneously in numerous environments and in the absence of a trained interventions provider after the person is taught a skill in a manner. So, self-management is a “pivotal” behavior (Koegel, Schreibman, Good, Cerniglia, Murphy & Koegel, 1989).

Thus, we have using the multi-media program called “FLASH” to design the so-called “social story” and then upload it on the school website. It just like e-book or karaoke that have a story about what he should do. Unlike the social story in paper, it not only has pictures and himself tells story told by teachers, it even has short film that the main character is student himself and the story, too.

For example, we want to reduce KaPo’s unwilling behavior like crying or shout when he wants to express himself unhappy. We first record the willing behavior (e.g. go to toilet to wash his face) by digital camera, and then record his reading by computer, “when KaPo unhappy, KaPo would go to toilet to wash his face.” Then input both into FLASH. When the lesson, teacher would help him to access “e-social story” to modeling and replace his unwilling behavior.

It gives very strong impression and very good to modeling the unwilling behavior. And also it may have a checklist online, when student watch one part of the social story, he should check the box to move to the next part. Teachers is helping him and teach parents to access and to use this tailor-made online software.

“In the present preliminary review, it was found that the problems and issues faced by special schools are very complex and often quite different from the mainstream schools. There are different categories of special schools catering for children with different special education needs. Use of IT in special schools includes the integration of assistive technologies, which often differ greatly across different categories of special schools. Further, the specific educational objectives often differ greatly across different special school categories to take into account the students’ special contexts. It is recommended here that a separate component of the review study be commissioned to address the specific evaluation questions, methodology and instrumentation necessary for conducting a proper review of IT implementation in special schools.”(EMB, 2004)

You can see that, all interventions for different students must be tailor-made. Assistive technologies, for example, most children with moderate mental handicap can’t use keyboard and mouse, touch-screen is needed. However, it is not enough in school, and also at home. All software and programme must be tailor-made by teachers while they can accessible. Time is very important and consumable to satisfy each students special educational needs.

Another problems so-called “Digital Divide”. Many families haven’t computer and of course can’t online at home. Their social status may be low and haven’t enough knowledge to handle their child or teach them by using IT. When the ongoing training is not stable, the effectiveness would down very quickly. For example, to changing KaPo’s unwilling behavior, social story must be told day by day, if the intervention stopped may be in the long holidays, the unwilling behavior will come again.

By the way, Multimedia and interaction elements in IT in education are used to draw the attention of the children and give them the responses directly, and it is very successful. In future, portal computer or PDA can help children with autism to express themselves (using images, sounds, even short film to communicate) and to have better self-management (give them hints or as a reminder).

Reference

1.       Autism Society of America (ASA). http://www.autism-society.org/site/PageServer?pagename=whatisautism.
2.       EMB. (2004). Empowering Learning and Teaching with Information Technology. Hong Kong.
3.       EMB.(2004). Information Technology in Education (ITEd) Evaluation. Summary and Recommendations of the Preliminary Study, pp.201-206. http://www.emb.gov.hk/ited_eval/
4.       Information center on disabilities and gifted education (2005). http://ericec.org/digests/e598.html#top, 10/3/2005
5.       Koegel, R. L., Koegel, L. k. & Parks, D. R. (1996). “Teach the Individual” model of Generalization. In Koegel, R. L. & Koegel L. K. (Eds.) Teaching children with autism: Strategies for initiating positive interactions and improving learning opportunities (pp. 67-77). Baltimore: Brookes.
6.       Koegel, R. L., Schreibman, L., Good, A., Cerniglia, L., Murphy, C. & Koegel, K. L. (1989). How to teach pivotal behaviors to children with autism. Unpublished manuscript, university of California, Santa Barbara.
7.       McNally, R. J., Kompik, J. J. & Sherman, G. (1984). Increasing the productivity of mentally retarded workers through self-management. Analysis and Intervention in Development Disabilities. 4, 129-135.
Westwood, P. (2003), Learning and Learning Difficulties. Hong Kong: University of Hong Kong.

[1] ABA stands for Applied Behavior Analysis (Scheuermann & Webber, 2002).
[2] PECS stands for Picture Exchange Communication System
[3] TEACCH stands for Treatment and Education of Autistic and Communication-handicapped Children (Connor, 1999).
[4] Sometimes we give wrong response to students answers, this may border students learning. But computer wouldn’t.

3.24.2014

Meeting Individual Needs: Case Studies

http://autismmythbusters.com/

Introduction

KaPo, who is a 15 years old boy also with moderate mentally handicap. Before we discuss his case, we are better to know more about his characteristics from some observation of classroom teaching. Here is the conclusion of KaPo’s academic report I wrote in last semester.

“KaPo is stubborn and crabbed; he only will to finish the tasks that he wants to do. When we don’t follow his own ‘routine’, he would be unhappy, sometimes he may cry, shout or jump. However, when he is taking drugs, he can calm down easily. So, we hope that he can keep it on and reinforce him to express feeling by using verbal language at home, too. In academic, he is good in mathematics, and he can calculate arithmetic of primary 1 level, but it is still have space to improve in application. Also he loves computer very much and enjoys the lessons.”

KaPo’s characteristics and performance in the classroom

It is obvious that he is autistic, although there is no clearly defined single syndrome (Wing 1996), and no two children with autism have identical characteristics (Koegel, Koegel, Frea & Smith, 1996; Wong & Westwood 2002), but KaPo has most of typical pattern of behavioral deficits and had been assessed in early childhood.

As the above report mentions, KaPo has behavioral and emotional problem. It makes that he cannot concentrate to do the given tasks. Actually, he also has some stereotyped behavior patterns to bother his learning, for example, hand flapping, clapping and always want to wash his hand during the lesson.

Another barriers to KaPo’s learning are that, he just repeating what you are saying and asking. It is a typical echolalia, and it seems to be immediate, because it fulfill what Laski, Charlop and Schreibman (1988) defined, “inappropriate repetitions of words and phrases” (p.394). We are not discussing which categories he should be classified, but it makes difficult to learning and teaching, application and generalization. For example, he cans calculate “12398+9872”, but cannot answers “if you bought 3 apples and then bought 2 apples, how many apples did you buy totally?”

Reflection about the school and the teacher

School: Not only in mainstream school, the curriculum in special school is also facing different types of constraints. Parents’ expectation, prevocational and vocational needs and EMB guidelines, for example, EYE programme, have determined curriculum. In KaPo’s case, if we are too focus on the training for working in shelter workshop after graduated, it narrows the whole development of student, although it is “relevant” and important to his future. Moreover, KaPo have emotional fluctuation when he feels off task. If we just follow what he wants to do, he will learn nothing. I am not challenge the learner-centered approach or the concept of “realistic” in “4R Test” (Brennan 1987), but it is really need to concern that did students really know what they are interest or benefit to themselves, especially they are moderate mentally handicap?

The emotional and behavioral problems have been “created”, when we are using the “real” situation, for example, visiting shelter workshop or practice cleaning job, because he didn’t adopt the environment and also strengthens him to have ritual behavior. Moreover, Practice about the cleaning in EYE programme or school leaver programme; it reinforces washing his hands after touching something dirty. Also, in special school setting, it is difficult to gain acceptance from classmates when the interaction between pupils are weak.

Teacher: Task analysis is usually used in teaching the working skills. It is because students can more easily to understand what the task is doing. Also, when the steps are smaller, teacher can use more simple language to teach students to finish the task. However, it has limitations as Westwood (2003, p53) said, “…a limit to how far one can go with this step-by-step reduction of learning without creating separate tasks which by themselves are meaningless.” Actually, KaPo is usually off task when he didn’t know the “meaning” of the task.

Students with moderate mentally handicap have a few responses, so, when we want to make sure that KaPo is listening and understands the instruction, we would like him to speak once again what we are asking him to do. Echolalia is reinforced. Moreover, when teacher using task analysis approach, questioning is not easy and efficient to apply in the direct-teach and demonstration. It may affect KaPo that leaning to distinguish between question and instruction.

Moreover, most of us use Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to reduce the undesirable behavior. Because it is effective, and the research have also provide the evidence (Scheuermann & Webber, 2002; Waterhouse, 2000). We are using positive reinforcement, maybe allow him to play computer after lunch, to stop his problematic behavior. It works, but when he didn’t have the reward, he really depressed and off task more often than we are not using it.

Evaluation of teaching and management program for KaPo

Beside the above matter, some teaching and management program is designed for KaPo.

TEACCH (Treatment and Education of Autisitc and communication-handicap Children):

Whatever it is an intervention strategy or a teaching method, even it is a curriculum and programme, evidence has proved that to be effective, it should be highly structured (Waterhouse, 2000; Smith, 2003). Structured teaching is an important priority because it fits the “culture of autism” (Mesibov, 2002).

TEACCH is respects this culture, in the other words, respects autistic child’s need for structure, routine and predictability in the daily programme in school and home, and uses such devices as a picture time table or schedule to show the child what activity he or she is to do now and what is to come later during other parts of the day (Wong & Westwood, 2002). In short, TEACCH is emphasized structured teaching, and uses a combination of cognitive, behavioral-change strategies (Connor, 1999), visual strategy and also using IEP. So, Individualization, structured learning and environmental adaptation are the defining features of TEACCH (Dempsey and Foreman, 2001).

It is true that KaPo feels more comfortable when structure and organization in the classroom or any other learning environment is provided. It helps student to alleviate or moderate the behavioral and emotional problem caused by poor communication. Moreover, when KaPo is occupied by the working task, it can reduce the time for stereotyped behavior, in long run; it can fade out the rigid behavior.

Self-Management:

Teaching self-management has been effective at improving a variety of behaviors, including appropriate vocational (McNally, Kompik & Sherman, 1984), even generalization (Koegel, Koegel & Parks, 1996).

As Koegel, Koegel & Parks (1996) stated that many of the most widely used methods of promoting generalization are based on a “teach exemplars” model, in which generalization is programmed to occur in different environments by actually teaching the individual in one environment after another. It is effective, but not practical. Not only because it is time consuming, in KaPo’s case, but also have emotional problem when adopting a new environment.

The second model is called “teach the individual” model, in which the generalization is occurs spontaneously in numerous environments and in the absence of a trained interventions provider after the person is taught a skill in a manner. So, self-management is a “pivotal” behavior (Koegel, Schreibman, Good, Cerniglia, Murphy & Koegel, 1989).

Consider the functional reinforcers, computer or IT should be used as self-management device. It is effective not only because KaPo like to play computer very much, but also because multimedia and interaction can draw him the attention and give him the responses directly. In future, portal computer or PDA can help autistic children to express themselves (using images, sounds, even short film to communicate) and to have better self-management (give them hints or as a reminder).

Conclusion

According to Snell and Brown (2000) child with intellectual disability will have experienced difficulty in making friends and gaining acceptance—particularly if he or she has some irritating or challenging behaviors. Even in the class, many students didn’t like KaPo when he cry and jump. So, to reduce or to eliminate rigid and stereotypic behaviors and maladaptive behaviors are not only for the ways that to foster further development in the child and to promote learning, but also to alleviate family distress. All interventions, teachings, programs, and IEPs are archiving this common goal.

References

1.    Brennan, W. K. (1987), Changing special education now (2nd ed). Milton Keynes: Open University Press.
2.    Connor, M. (1999). Children on the autistic spectrum: Guidelines for mainstream practice. Support for Learning, 14 (2) 80-86.
3.    Dempsey, I. & Foreman, P. (2001). A review of educational approaches for individual with autism. International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, 48 (1), 103-116.
4.     Koegel, R. L., Koegel, L. k., Frea, W. D. & Smith A. E. (1996). Emerging interventions for children with autism: Longitudinal and lifestyle implications. In Koegel, R. L. & Koegel L. K. (Eds.) Teaching children with autism: Strategies for initiating positive interactions and improving learning opportunities (pp. 1-15). Baltimore: Brookes.
5.     Koegel, R. L., Koegel, L. k. & Parks, D. R. (1996). “Teach the Individual” model of Generalization. In Koegel, R. L. & Koegel L. K. (Eds.) Teaching children with autism: Strategies for initiating positive interactions and improving learning opportunities (pp. 67-77). Baltimore: Brookes.
6.     Koegel, R. L., Schreibman, L., Good, A., Cerniglia, L., Murphy, C. & Koegel, K. L. (1989). How to teach pivotal behaviors to children with autism. Unpublished manuscript, university of California, Santa Barbara.
7.     Laski, K., Charlop, M., & Schreibman, L. (1988). Training parents to use the natural language paradigm to increase their autistic children’s speech. Journal of Applied Bahavior Analysis, 21, 391-400.
8.     McNally, R. J., Kompik, J. J. & Sherman, G. (1984). Increasing the productivity of mentally retarded workers through self-management. Analysis and Intervention in Development Disabilities. 4, 129-135
9.     Mesibov, G. B. (2002), TEACCH – What is TEACCH? http://www.teacch.com/aboutus.htm, 10/18/2002
10.  Scheuermann, B. & Webber, J. (2002). Autism: Teaching does make a difference. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth-Thomson.
11.   Smith, D. D. (2003). Introduction to Special Education (5th Edn). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
12.  Snell, M. E., and Brown, F. (2000). Instruction of Students with Severe Disabilities (5th edn), Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill.
13.  Waterhouse, S. (2000). A positive approach to autism. London: Jessica Kingsley.
14.  Westwood, P. (2003), Learning and Learning Difficulties. Hong Kong: University of Hong Kong
15.  Wing. L. (1996). The Autistic Spectrum, London: Constable.
16.  Wong, Y. Y. & Westwood, P. (2002). The teaching and management of children with autism. Hon Kong Special Education Forum, 5 (1), 46-72

Additional readings

17.  Horner, R. H., Junlap, G., Koegel, R. L. (Eds). (1988) Generalization and maintenance: Lifestyle changes in applied settings. Baltimore: Brookes
18.  Poon, K. F. (2002). Meeting Special Needs in Mainstream Classrooms. Hong Kong: Longman
19.  Prizant, B. M. & Rydell, P. J. (1993). Assessment and intervention considerations for unconventional verbal behavior. In Reichle, J. & Wacker, W. (Eds). Communicative approaches to the management of challenging behavior. Baltimore: Brookes
20. Quill, K.A. (1995). Teaching children with autism. Delmar.
21.  Robert, L., Koegel & Koegel, L. K. (1996). Teaching children with autism. Baltimore: Brookes
22. Rutter,M.(1985). The treatment of autistic children. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines, 26:193-214.
23. Rydell, P. J. & Prizant, B. M. (1995). Assessment and intervention strategies for children who use echolalia. In Quill, K. A. (ed). Teaching children with autism (pp105-132). NY: Delmar.
24. Schopler, E. & Reichler, R. J. (1979). Individualized assessment and treatment for autistic and developmentally disabled children (2nd ed). Austin, TX: PRO-ED
25. Worthington, A, (1999). The Fulton special education digest. London: Fulton

2003/12/31

3.21.2014

Why do we expect pupils to go to school?

http://teaching.monster.com/benefits/articles/2073-special-education-an-introduction-for-new-teachers

Introduction: The role of the aims of education

One of the arguments, which is used to reject or to ignore discussing the aims of education among teachers, is that: we are just required to follow what the government stated in the official documents. There has no room for us to discuss. Or the aims of education is variant, different people has different points of view. There has no model answer for this question. However, the aims of education is very important for teachers, not only because it affect on our teaching, but also is a process that for reflect what is education and what we have done.

The background of the special school

I am teaching in special school, the children with moderate mental handicap. To satisfy all their diverse special needs, we use eleven methods for ten students.

They often have learning difficulties in attending to the relevant aspects of a learning situation, in storing information in long term-memory, in generalizing what they learn, and in language (Westwood, 2003). And also some of them are children with autism. Children with autism typically have difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, interactions and leisure or play activates (ASA, 2004).

The interventions usually are ABA[1], PECS[2], visual strategies, TEACCH[3], situation teaching and learning, Snoezelen and Interactive Process Approach, Life Application Training (生活流程教學), social stories, even mediation and psychotherapy.

These all interventions need long-term training and co-operation with parents. So, the bottleneck of their education is not only their own abilities, but also whether the parents willing to co-operate.

Taking one of my students as an example, whose name Stonely, his abilities are pretty good. He came to my school in this year, but he had already picked up the schedule of schooling. He can just only utter some sound but understands what you said. We all believe that he can learn more while he experiences more. However, his mother rejects most of the school activities. When we had taught some self-care skills, such as washing head, he couldn’t practice at home, and finally he forgot what he had learnt.

The consensus in school on the aims of education

From the above, we can see that it has a very close relationship among school, teachers, students, and parents. The co-operation is demanding. If the aims of education of each membership are different, it is very difficult to have a successful education. Now we are investigating what students, teachers, parents and school believe to be the purpose of education, see whether they believe same aim or thinking in different ways.

Talking about the students first. As we saw in Stonely’s case, students are very enjoying in school’s life. It is because unlike mainstream school, students have much fewer activities than normal students when both of them are not going to school. It may because students with special needs need much more care from parents when they are outing.

In fact, nowadays, normal students have many reasons to reject going to school. Because of Internet, information and knowledge is easily acquired. Also, the knowledge grow rapidly, it seems that teaching in school cannot follow the main trend of knowledge expand. Taking computer studies as an example, many students blame that what they learnt in school is ten years ago technology or programme, for example, Basic and Logo. They are not popular or even vanish in IT’s world.

If they want to make friends or be “socialization”, they can go to centers or join some interest group in society. If go to school for the economic reason, that is training as an employee. It seems much more effective when they are learning from doing. That means they can have on job training rather than going to school. We does not say that it is no use to go to school, but it seems it has many alternative way to achieve what students expected doing in school.

Students in my school have no such reasons, or may be they cannot achieve that level of critical thinking or reflection. But through their smiles, we can see or even feel that they enjoy the lesson, activities and school’s life. For them, it is clear that the aims of education are improving their qualities of their life.

However, parents have different thought about schooling and education. From the interviews in the parent’s day, we can see that the topics, which the parent’s most interested is where do their children go after, graduated. Of course, they also concern whether their children enjoy the school’s life, but their expectations about what children learnt in school are not very much. Taking about Stonely, why his mother rejects the outgoing activities? From the dialog with his mother, we know that she worried about the safety of the activities. It seems that emphasis is on ‘care’ more than education.

So, what is the teacher’s point of views? Although it is not a ‘model answer’ because it has labeling effect which we didn’t want, but the fact is every teachers in special education are doing the same things, that is transform students to have a normal life, to fulfill or even to expand their potential and capacity. Once we can see the improvement of the students abilities, although it has no significance to mention, we have the most successful feeling and proud for that change.

The aims of education of my school are follow the mission statement of Hong Chi Association (2003).

“Hong Chi Association is dedicated to serving people with mental handicap and their families. We believe that people with mental handicap have the same rights and freedoms as other members of the community. They should be given every opportunity to develop physically, intellectually, socially and emotionally. And they should be encouraged and helped to participate fully in family and community life. All forms of discrimination against people with mental handicap are wrong. We will listen to the needs and wishes of people with mental handicap and their families, educate and train them so that they can develop to their full potential, assist them to find jobs and to live as independently as possible, and promote understanding and acceptance of people with mental handicap.”

To use categories, which learnt in lecture, it is obvious that the aims of education of my school can be classify as social and economic reconstruction. To promote understanding and acceptance of people with mental handicap, that mean the needs is here, why? It is because she thinks that the society has inequalities or misunderstanding about mental handicaps. To change it, to promote. It is a future centered. Parents care whether teaching can fulfill the requirement of future jobs; it is similar to economic and social efficiency. Of course, teachers and students can be classifying as personal enlightenment and empowerment because we concern about qualities of life. All above these are unlike official aims of education in Hong Kong in Education Commission (2000), which is include all elements, but has no focus.

From the above analysis, we can see that there has no consensus on the aims of education among government, school, teachers, students and parents.

The concept of education and the aims of the education

John Dewey (1859-1952) said that education as such has no aims; it is people involved in education, teachers, schools, governments, parents, and even students, who have aims. But people have often tried to clarify or defend their own aims by asking what are, or what should be, the aims of education.

As Haydon (1996) said that “to ask what the aims of education are—when this is a philosophical question and not an empirical question about what actual teachers and others are aiming at—is to suppose that certain aims are implicit in the concept of education. Thus, the question about the aims of education can be reducing to debate about the central features, and the boundaries, of the concept of education.

Under this background, most philosopher of education now would probably agree that the important question about the aims of education is a normative one: what should teachers (and others in related positions of influence) be aiming at? Debate around this question is effectively debate about what the aims of schooling ought to be.

So, the articulation of a concept of education may well furnish a central part of the answer. In analyzing the concept of education by Peters (1966), there have explicit three characteristics of education processes as follows:
  • That ‘education’ implies the transmission of what is worth-while to those who become committed to it;
  • That ‘education’ must involve knowledge and understanding and some kind of cognitive perspectives, which are not inert;
  • That ‘education’ at least rules out some procedures of transmission, on the ground that they lack wittingness and voluntariess.
  • Therefore, “education processes are voluntarily pursed and cognitively involved desirable changes.”

Teachers as mediators

What should teachers do? To facing the different aims of education, the tensions between individual and societal, vocational and academic, economic and democratic, stability and change, local and global, etc. And as White (1982) said that the list of aims is almost endless. As in the introduction mention, I think it is a process that reflects what is education and what we have done. To balance those tensions, to improve students qualities of life, and to involved desirable changes, that is our jobs and no cook-book to tell us how to do is the best.


Reference
  1. Autism Society of America (ASA). http://www.autism-society.org/site/PageServer?pagename=whatisautism. 4/3/2004.
  2. Dewey, J. (1916). Democracy and Education. NY: Macmillan.
  3.  Haydon, G.. (1996). Aim of Education. In J.J. Chambliss (ed) (1996). Philosophy of Education: An Encyclopedia. NY: Garland.
  4. Hong Chi Association (2004). http://www.hongchi.org.hk/ 1/4/2004.
  5.  Peters, R. (1966). Ethics and Education. London: George Allen and Unwin
  6. Poon-McBrayer, K. F. & Lian, M. G.. J. (2002). Special Needs Education: Children with Exceptionalities. HK: The Chinese University of Hong Kong.
  7. Westwood, P. (2003), Learning and Learning Difficulties. Hong Kong: University of Hong Kong.
  8. White, J. (1982). The Aims of Education Restated. London: Routledge.

[1] ABA stands for Applied Behavior Analysis (Scheuermann & Webber, 2002).
[2] PECS stands for Picture Exchange Communication System
[3] TEACCH stands for Treatment and Education of Autistic and Communication-handicapped Children (Connor, 1999).

2004/5/29