Homeschooling and Socialization
While it may be a tired topic, the issue of socialization and homeschooling is going to continue to come up. This is a particular concern for children without siblings, or those with siblings that they don’t get along with. It’s a fact that everyone needs to have enough social contact with others in order to make friends and lead a happy childhood.
Most parents of homeschooled children find ways to make this happen for their kids. Others, however, seem to struggle with this part of homeschooling because they’ve always depended on a public school system to provide their children with the opportunity for friendships.
Once you begin homeschooling your children, it’s going to be necessary to make sure that they have every chance possible to make friends, and it may be up to you to see that it happens. For families that attend church on a regular basis, the problem may be somewhat solved because churches tend to have youth activities going on quite a bit. Many times, this can provide enough social exposure to allow your children to make some great friends.
Another way to get your children exposed to other kids their age is through outside activities such as gymnastics, martial arts classes or dance classes. Anything that puts your children in the environment to meet other kids is a great way to give them a chance to meet their future best friend. It also gives your kids some much needed entertainment as well as letting them learn a new skill that they can use to relax or just have some fun.
If you live in a neighborhood, there are probably other kids around that your children can socialize with. Use special occasion events such as your children’s birthdays to have a party so that the kids in the neighborhood can be invited along with any others that your children may want to invite. These can be a lot of fun for everyone and your child can end up with a new friend or two by the end of the event.
Don’t ever get under the impression that your children won’t have any friends if they’re homeschooled. In fact, children tend to find their own friends even when left to their own devices. Try taking them on vacation to the beach for a week. You can bet they’ll make some fast friends the first day they arrive and that they’ll hang out with those friends the entire week. Children are more resilient than they’re given credit for.
At any rate, the last thing you ever need to worry about is whether or not your children will make friends if they’re homeschooled. They tend to do just fine with or without your help. All they need is to want to meet other kids and it usually happens. Of course, if you notice that your children aren’t being as social as they should be, then you may want to step in and set some things up so they can meet some new people.