CHILDREN ARE ENJOYING THEIR DIPLOMAS
Bratislava, 28 August 2019: Another year of the popular summer school for knowledge-hungry children has come to an end. Out of 340 students, 223 received their diplomas after attending the 17th year of the Children’s Comenius University.
By: CU Public Relations Office
WHY ARE QUESTIONS STARTING WITH THE WORD “WHY” THE MOST DIFFICULT TO ANSWER?
This year’s last lecture was held by the vice-rector of Comenius University for External Relations, Radomír Masaryk. He explained to the young students why questions starting with the word “why” are the most difficult to answer. As a psychologist, he focused primarily on questions seeking to figure out the causes of human behaviour. He pointed out that although it may seem to us that human behaviour can be explained in a relatively simple way, it is, in fact, a complex problem with several aspects to consider and it is necessary to search for causality, which prevails over the observed phenomena.
He gave real-life examples on how much of the meaning is lost during a conversation, on how each person communicates and reacts in a slightly different way, not to mention that our perception of the world and our communication are significantly impacted by culture. This is why a psychologist is not able to and, in fact, cannot give a conclusive answer to the question starting with the word “why”. As Radomír Masaryk said, in most cases, the answer is in the vein of: “It depends on a number of things.”
A WELL-DESERVED GRADUATION CEREMONY
All children who attended at least six of the nine lectures have received a diploma in the Comenius University Auditorium. This was the last ceremony attended by the current University Beadle, Milan Kečkeš, who worked at the university for 47 years. The children attending the Children’s Comenius University were the last ones to see him dressed in the academic gown and carrying the mace.
Comenius University rector, Marek Števček, reminded children of the societal obligation related to the climate crisis, which the current generation of young students will have to face. “People say that a child should dwell in every adult or that we should strive to remain children for as long as we can. I do not agree with that. In order to resolve the tasks that await your generation, it is necessary for you to grow up. These tasks are relatively difficult. I consider the most significant one to be watching over how people treat their own planet. We are systematically destroying the planet and it is up to your generation to take the matters firmly into their own hands,” emphasised Comenius University rector.
Juraj Kukura, Aréna Theatre director, congratulated the graduates on their decision to spend their summer holidays with science, art, and education. He put his hope in them: “You are here to prove that Einstein's theory is held to be true only until it is disproven.”
Mikuláš Krippel, the vice-chairman of the Bratislava Self-Governing Region, said: “Curiosity and desire for answers, for more information and for knowledge will serve as your motivation, not only for your future studies but also for the development of your own thinking and your own opinions, creativity and ability to participate in a discussion,” he said.
“I wish you to live in reality. The current time period, which we cannot help but be part of, is living on the internet, by data, and communicated information. Remain in reality. Read real books, meet real people and your life will be valuable,” advised Zuzana Aufrichtová, mayor of the city district Bratislava – Old Town.
In addition to the series of nine lectures, the students had the opportunity to participate in accompanying events and workshops. Popular activities included the army workshop; excursions and educational programmes in cooperation with the Slovak National Gallery and the Slovak National Museum; visits to the National Bank of Slovakia, Energoland, and the nature school at Planinka; and a dance workshop. Yesterday, children visited the National Council of the Slovak Republic, where they did not hesitate to pose difficult questions to the MPs.