As a CEGEP student, I understand that autonomy and methodology are two very important skills to have. They allow me to find the motivation needed to successfully complete my school work or to endure the frustrations that come with being a student. They help me keep my mind off distant goals like graduation and passing classes or exams, and most importantly, they help me focus on what’s in front of me.
I believe there are ways parents can raise their children in order to have a positive impact on their academic success as they grow up. It is just as important for the students to understand the importance of methodology and autonomy in their personal development as it is for their parents.
Autonomy, in my opinion, can be developed over time within various spheres of activity. It affects physical skills, thinking, learning, social interactions, emotion management and the distinction between what is good and what is bad. Autonomy is the ability to satisfy one’s own needs and to make decisions while taking one’s environment into account.
Parents can help their children develop their autonomy in many ways. Stimulating a child’s creativity and encouraging him to participate in household chores are good examples that helped me as a child. Be positive, encourage your children and try not to overprotect them. Encouraging them in difficult times may help them believe in their own abilities.
According to psychoeducator Marie-Hélène Chalifour, if your children are having difficulties with a task and you choose to criticize them, become impatient or punish them, they risk feeling ashamed and might lose their self-confidence. Logically, this could impair the development of their autonomy. On the other hand, an overprotected child may become anxious, insecure, fearful and less resourceful.
In most areas of life, you can follow more or less flexible procedures in order to achieve certain results. For example, when I want to cook something, I usually follow a recipe to the letter, while others would start with a recipe and modify the ingredients as they go. This choice is up to the individual and is what I call one’s work methodology.
Methodology, both as a way of life and as work methods, is what was taught to me and what helps me as a student. Around me, some students began working effectively and autonomously in high school. Others took longer to get there. I think it is the latter who are most likely to make the most out of their years at CEGEP. This ability to organize one’s work efficiently is not applicable only to college; I can imagine that it is also difficult to succeed at university without a proper work method. Not all schools theorize and teach methodology, or are sufficiently organized to allow students to understand and assimilate this method.
Marie-Hélène Chalifour adds that you can help your child develop his self-confidence by adapting his environment, by encouraging him to satisfy his own needs and by giving him more responsibilities at home. This can also help him become more autonomous and let him develop his own work methods. These essential learning skills will accompany him throughout his life and will have a major impact on his academic and professional success. Is that not a nice thing to offer?
My parents provided supportive environments that helped me develop my autonomy: I had household responsibilities, opportunities to satisfy my own needs, etc. I had the chance to develop myself and maintain good self-confidence even if it wasn’t always easy. The skills and abilities I acquired have a positive impact on my academic and professional success. No matter which mountain I have to climb, I know I will always reach the top!
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