OALibJ  Vol.8 No.12 , December 2021
Challenges and Countermeasures Faced by Life Education in the Internet Era
Abstract: With the acceleration of Internet development and economic globalization, various social ideologies affect the life values of college students. This article aims to guide college students to cherish life, promote their mental health, and help them establish correct life values. On the basis of interpreting the connotation of life education, this article analyzes the challenges brought by the Internet era to life education, and proposes that in the Internet age, the power of schools, society, and families should be integrated to help students resist the negative impact of Internet culture and effectively develop their welfare. The purpose of this article is to get the countermeasures to effectively carry out the life education for college students.

1. Introduction

With the acceleration of Internet development and economic globalization, social competition has become increasingly fierce. As a special group that carries high expectations of society, family and school, college students have a strong desire for self-development. However, their psychological development is not yet mature, and meanwhile they more or less lack social experience and strong adaptability. Therefore, college students are prone to have psychological problems to some extent. Many college students are overwhelmed and addicted to the virtual reality of online world so that incidents disregarding and harming lives happen from time to time.

The problem that education faces at present is how to discover and integrate the meaning of life in the conflict between hard and fragile life, so that individual’s life can have the greatest achievement. The Indian poet Tagore once said, “The purpose of education is to convey the breath of life to people” [1]. The key to guiding college students out of the misunderstanding of life value is to highlight life education. Through life education, they can treat life dialectically, improve their perception of life, and realize the value and meaning of their life to the greatest extent.

What is life education? Life education is an educational activity that takes life as the core and education as the means to promote the understanding of and reverence for life. Life education is ultimately an educational activity that improves the quality of life and obtains the value of life.

In 1968, American scholar Jay Donald Watts clearly proposed the idea of life education for the first time, and established the “Ananda Village” and Ananda School in California, USA, and began to advocate and practice life education ideas; Peter McPhail of the United Kingdom founded the School of Compassionate Education, and he believes that moral education should not be reduced to only analyzing rules and prohibitions, but should inspire the human nature that everyone should have been trained as a human being to an altruistic spirit.

In China, the earlier detailed and systematic research on “Life Moral Education” was made by Professor Liu Hui from the School of Educational Science of Shenyang Normal University. In her book “Life Moral Education” [2], she established the theory of life and moral education from the perspective of the biology. In addition, some influential journal articles have conducted research on certain aspects of life and moral education, such as Feng Jianjun’s “The Proposition and Connotation of Life and Moral Education” [3], Zhang Wenli’s “A New Field of Moral Education in Middle Schools: Life and Moral Education” [4], Bo Cunxu’s “Current Dilemma of Life Faced by College Students in my country and Educational Countermeasures” [5], etc. The above studies on life and moral education have some things in common, that is, the life and moral education they studied is a traditional broad category, which is to treat all life in the universe, including not only human life, but also other animal and plant life. And most of their targets generally refer to young people, and the moral education they target is only students in schools, rarely involving family and society. The society is developing, and the research content of life education should also keep pace with the times. In particular, the current online society has brought a great impact on the life education of college students. The Internet culture has subtly affected the life outlook and values of college students, and the negative information on the Internet has distorted some students’ outlook on life, and the rapid development of the Internet has increased the difficulty of regulating and controlling college students’ life education. Therefore, in response to the challenges brought by the Internet age, it is of important and practical significance to conduct in-depth research on the education strategies for college students’ life.

This article takes contemporary college students as the research object, and aims at the status quo of college students’ disregard of life and blasphemy of life, and the challenges brought by the Internet culture to college students’ life education. Through countermeasures research, the following problems are to be solved: First, help college students to treat life dialectically and understand the essence of life, so as to respect and cherish life, improve the perception of life, and strengthen their will to life. Furthermore, students are guided to identify the negative and harmful information in the Internet culture and establish correct values of life. Finally, it discusses how schools, society, and families can form a joint force in the Internet age to strengthen the guidance of life education for college students in a multi-channel and all-round way, and promote their healthy development.

2. The Goals and Connotations of Life Education

The goals and connotations of life education are mainly reflected in the following four aspects.

2.1. Guide Students to Have Reverence for Life and Self-Love

“People live between heaven and earth as travelers.” Life belongs to people only once. In relation to the lengthy history of heaven and earth, everyone’s life is short and fragile. People will always encounter various kinds of hardships and setbacks in real life. If a person can deal with them correctly and regard all kinds of unsatisfactory things as a part of their lives, then negative things may turn into positive counterparts. But what many college students lack is endurance, and some even deliberately pursue immediate entertainment or indulge in the virtual world of the internet, showing fearlessness of life, inability to survive, and boredom in life in their thoughts and behaviors. They lack the reverence for life. Life education will let college students realize the preciousness of life and teach them to have self-love.

2.2. Guide Students to Strengthen Life Endurance and Improve the Resilience of Life

Poetic life education is a kind of training for life endurance. There is no way to avoid suffering in life. Learning to challenge suffering and fostering the will of life have become our only choice in the course of life. Therefore, to train life endurance, it is necessary to conduct frustration education, adversity education, and death education to guide students to realize that pain and suffering are a part of life and cannot be selected. Only after overcoming sufferings can we feel the fun and resilience of life. Teachers should also create a certain amount of simulated adversity, so as to hone the students’ will, and so that they can experience the hardships of life. Through the simulated adversity, students will cherish life more and improve the tenacity and quality of life.

2.3. Guide Students to Learn Interpersonal Communication and Improve the Quality of Caring People

Cherishing life includes not only maintaining oneself, but also being familiar with the rules of getting along with others, learning to respect, learning to care, learning to be tolerant, and learning to live in harmony. Everyone must be in a certain social relationship. Only through the practice of loving others can one’s life be truly improved. Therefore, in implementing life education in schools, the education of interpersonal communication must be carried out. On the one hand, students should be taught to master the rules of communication, how to communicate with others, and how to live in peace with others; on the other hand, they should also cultivate the qualities of humanistic and social care, learn to accept others, appreciate others, and live in harmony with the society and the nature.

2.4. Guide Students to Realize the Meaning and Value of Life and Develop a Correct Outlook on Life

Life is not just about “alive,” but also contains meaning and value. Therefore, the basic level of the goal of life education is to teach students to cherish life, and the higher level is to teach students to realize the meaning of life and to pursue the ideal of life. Only when this goal is achieved can the individual life on the biological level be truly transformed into an independent, dignified, and free value individual on the cultural level, and then the individual can become a “real person” [6].

3. Challenges Brought by the Internet Society to Life Education

The development of the Internet has promoted social progress and changed our lives. However, the diversity and uncertainty of Internet culture also affects the life values of contemporary college students. In the Internet society, people’s ideas and evaluation standards are diversified, and traditional values are greatly impacted. The value system and value concept began to change, and the inherent ideological balance was gradually broken. These changes have an impact on the fields of culture and education, and have a great impact on the life values of college students.

3.1. Negative Information in the Internet Distorts the Outlook on Life of College Students, Thus Being Too Selfish and Ignoring Life

The Internet is open and diversified. There are many different kinds of information on the Internet, and there is also many negative information. For example, there are decadent thoughts and reactionary speeches spread and disseminated by some countries with ulterior motives. There are also many pornographic and obscene information and violent online games. College students are in a critical period for the formation and development of outlook on life and values, but they are not rich enough in social experience, not strong in discrimination. Meantime, they sometimes do not think deeply about the value of life, and cannot fully, accurately and profoundly understand the problems, so they are very vulnerable to various problems. The influence of this kind of negative information has distorted one’s outlook on life and deviated from the right track. For example, some college students play some online games. The game stipulates that people have nine lives. After death, they can use gold coins to buy lives again, or they can borrow or give lives to each other. College students who often play this kind of games are easy to use this in online virtual games. This kind of misconception is brought into real life, and there is a phenomenon that hurts others or one’s own life. In recent years, suicides and bullying incidents have occurred frequently on university campuses. The methods used by those bullies are cruel and heinous. “Studies have shown that with people’s intake of violent media information, the possibility of people becoming violent in large and small matters will increase. Violent messages from the media have repelled your compassion and your kindness.” [7]

3.2. Fast-Food Culture on the Internet Makes Students Impetuous and Slack to Think about Life and Its Value

The influence of the Internet society on people is omni-directional and multi-angle. Little things in life can spread to all corners of the world in a blink of an eye, meanwhile affecting everyone. The online society is more competitive and the pace of life is faster. People often post their ideas on social media before they know the truth. This social environment can easily cause students to have an impetuous state of mind, and thus lose the patience for life and serious thinking about life. In the virtual cyberspace, students get infinite freshness and stimulation, subtly lose interest in real life, lose the ability to feel the beautiful things in life, and then weaken the relationship between relatives and friends in reality. “Wu Xieyu’s mother-killing case” is a typical case of contemporary college students disregarding love and life.

3.3. The Rapid Development of the Internet Has Increased the Difficulty of Regulating and Controlling Life Education for College Students

First of all, in the Internet era, the Internet has become an important spiritual home for college students, which has led to their rapid development of their dependence on the Internet. The excessive dependence of college students on the Internet increases the psychological problems of college students and the difficulty of regulating and controlling life education for college students. For example, many college students are addicted to the Internet and become “human-computer communication” for a long time. They have less communication with their classmates, teachers and family members. They are prone to barriers to interpersonal communication and have adverse psychological problems such as anxiety, withdrawn, suspicious, and low self-esteem. These classmates do not know how to seek social support when they encounter difficulties in their studies and life. Because they often do not interact with others, classmates and teachers are not easy to find their problems and cannot help them in a timely and effective manner. Secondly, in the online world, life educators and college students are anonymous, and there is no face-to-face contact between the two parties, which brings new difficulties to life education work and increases the difficulty of regulating and controlling life education for college students. The specific manifestations are as follows: It is difficult for life workers to confirm the authenticity and reliability of the information of college students, unable to clearly understand the current situation of students’ study and life, difficult to provide them with targeted and effective help, and cannot use like face-to-face communication. The kind and positive personality charm infects college students, and it is also impossible to understand the students’ personality, cooperation level and counseling motivation through their facial expressions, body language and other non-verbal information.

4. Countermeasures to Strengthen the Life Education of College Students

Based on the challenges faced by life education at this stage, schools, society, and families should form a joint force to strengthen the life and moral education of college students from the following aspects:

4.1. Infiltrate the Content of Life Education in Subject Teaching and Stimulate Students to Think about the Value of Life

The ideological and political course in colleges is the main site to help students develop a correct outlook on life. It is also the principal course for conducting life education [8]. In fact, the goal of ideological and political course is to take Xi Jinping’s Thoughts on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era as a guide, and guide individuals to improve the quality and value of life. The ideological and political course contains a wealth of themes of life education, and teachers should be good at digging, sorting, and refining these themes. Life education in the philosophy class should run through the main line, that is, for an individual’s life to be meaningful and valuable, it must give full play to the individual’s subjective initiative and creativity on the basis of respect for objective laws. Life education in the course of “Ideological and Moral Cultivation and Legal Foundation” should follow the idea that an individual’s life is meaningful and valuable, and it must conform to the times, reflect the spirit of the times, and guide college students to improve their ideological, moral and legal literacy, and consciously assume the responsibility of national rejuvenation. In the ethics course, it is necessary to grasp the basic guideline that everyone should have goals to pursue. It’s not enough to just rely on the law to restrain oneself, the improvement of moral spirit is also very important, and only by doing so can people achieve excellence and nobility.

4.2. Create a Healthy Network Culture Environment and Guide College Students to Form a Correct Outlook on Life

The construction of a healthy network culture is an important prerequisite for the life education of college students in the network age, so all relevant departments of the society must work together to create a healthy Internet culture environment for college students. First, the government should regulate the cyber culture environment through legislation and strengthening law enforcement. Although the Internet is open, it is also restricted by relevant laws and regulations. Therefore, the government must formulate more complete and operable laws to maintain the effective and healthy transmission of information on the network, so that network supervision has laws to follow. At the same time, law enforcement agencies should improve law enforcement capabilities and strengthen law enforcement efforts, and be able to filter the spread of harmful and negative information on the Internet through relevant information technology means, and reduce the poison of such information to college students. Second, the school should strengthen the construction of campus network culture. The campus network monitoring system can be established and improved to prevent harmful information from entering the campus network. Third, college students should be trained in network regulations and media literacy. It is necessary to cultivate college students’ cyber-legal awareness, improve their discrimination and resilience in complex cyber culture, so that they can keep a clear mind and rational thinking at all times, and form a correct outlook on life and values.

4.3. Build an Online Life Education Platform to Strengthen the Regulation and Control of College Students’ Life Education

The Internet is a double-edged sword. The rapid development of the Internet has increased the difficulty of regulating life education for college students. At the same time, the large amount of information, fast transmission, and convenient query of the Internet also provide convenience for college students’ life education. We should use these advantages to build the online life education platform, strengthen the regulation and control of college students’ life education. First of all, the Ministry of Education can build a national life education network platform for college students to provide college students with basic knowledge, touching stories, and typical cases of life education, and provide high-quality and convenient network services such as life education practical tests and crisis intervention methods to help college students establish correct view of life. Secondly, the school should carry out online psychological consultation. Compared with traditional psychological counseling, online psychological counseling is anonymous, which relieves the tension and anxiety of college students when facing teachers directly. They have lower psychological defenses and less worry, so they can speak freely without scruples. Communication makes it easier for teachers to discover their problems and intervene in time. Finally, we will strengthen the guidance for the work of college students’ life education clubs, and build a network system for college students’ life mutual assistance. The life mutual aid network system for college students is based on the Internet with self-education, peer communication, peer guidance, etc., college students can then learn from the successful experience of others in the process of helping each other, being infected by the positive emotions of others, and enhancing the meaning of life.

4.4. Establish a Home-School Network Communication Platform to Form a Joint Force in Home-School Education and Jointly Create a Caring Atmosphere

Parents play an important role in the growth of children. “Parents are the closest people to their children. In this sense, the education of children depends on their parents.” [9] Due to the physical distance, the vast majority of parents cannot often go to school to communicate with teachers. The Internet has given schools and families, teachers and parents a seamless connection channel and opportunities, school website, WeChat official account, teacher’s WeChat and DingTalk, QQ, etc. can become a platform for communication between home and school. Schools can publish school teaching arrangements, work plans, etc. through the network platform. Teachers can inform parents of students’ learning, ideological trends, and psychological conditions in a timely manner, forming a joint force in home-school education, promptly and effectively diverting students’ psychological problems, and promoting the healthy growth of students.

5. Summary and Prospect

Caring for life, cultivating a sound personality, and taking every step carefully in the life journey are the essence of life education. In order to improve the quality-of-life education in an all-round way, educators will continue to explore and innovate educational models to cultivate physically and mentally healthy students who are brave enough to take up the great responsibility of national rejuvenation for the society.

Cite this paper: Fu, H.J. (2021) Challenges and Countermeasures Faced by Life Education in the Internet Era. Open Access Library Journal, 8, 1-9. doi: 10.4236/oalib.1108240.

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