“There are three things incredibly hard: steel, diamonds, and to know one’s self.” - Benjamin Franklin
Knowing one’s self is hard. It’s a journey that we begin as children and never fully finish. Self-discovery takes discipline, courage and risk. Understanding and unveiling one's soul looks different in every season and with every new story.
Self-discovery is a complicated multi-step process that is vital to the journey that is living a purposeful life. When children and young adults are not encouraged and coached into a journey of self-discovery they often become adults who contort themselves to fit into careers, lifestyles, relationships, and homes that don’t fit them and never will. Like trying to fit a round peg into a square hole, forcing a life that isn’t true to one’s self leads to pain and self-destruction. When young people intentionally get to know themselves however, discovering their “shape” and a great “hole” for them to fit into will be a fulfilling process that leads to a purposeful life. Though self-discovery comes from within and requires the commitment and action of the individual, young people can definitely be encouraged, led and coached through the process.
Our goal as online school educators is to coach youth into courses and conversations that encourage self reflection. Instead of sticking to the monotony of busy work and the suffocating structure of a normal day’s school schedule, we believe in the efficacy of experiential education. We invite online school students to learn by experience, at their own pace, and with methods that are tailored to their unique preferences, skills and abilities. Not only do we want students to learn algebra, Roman history and persuasive essay formats, but we also want our online school students to learn about themselves. CMASAS instructors and Personalized Education Coaches place special emphasis on students discovering, embracing and communicating to others their strengths, weaknesses, and passions.
We are all on this journey of self-discovery together — parents and children, children and teachers, students and peers — striving to live remarkable lives and empower others to do the same.
Some practical ways that CMASAS engages in and encourages self discovery:
- Cutting edge and relevant Career and Technical Education Courses that prepare online high school students for a wide range of high-demand careers. By taking these courses, both introductory and advanced, online schools students will become more knowledgeable about potential jobs and career choices they can make.
- Student Travel opportunities beginning with a trip to Cuba in April. Self-discovery is escalated when one is outside of his/her comfort zone and experiencing life in a new way. Traveling, especially internationally, is an incredible way to expand one’s world view while learning more about one’s self. Learn more about our upcoming trip here.
- Student Voice, a growing movement that ranges from students having more of a say in their education to students actually being in the driver's seat, leading the way. Many students have shared their stories and journeys of self-discovery with us here.
In this new year, 2016, may all of us, the CMASAS community, have a renewed strength, curiosity, commitment and passion for self-discovery, both in our own lives and the lives of others. Live remarkably and be your true self.