Socialization. If you have been homeschooling for any length of time, or know someone who is, I’m sure you have heard that dreaded word. Usually couched into a question: “What about socialization?” Because apparently there is this image of a lonely child stooped over a book or computer, shut up in a house, whenever anyone hears the word “homeschool”.
Guess what? For most of us- it isn’t true.
Are there parents that use homeschooling as a way to isolate their kids? Are there parents that do absolutely nothing but stay at home and stifle their poor little prisoners? I’m sure there are…. But I have never met them. A lot of people will have an old tired example of this one family they know that does this or that….. Followed by a terrible story. Well the families we know choose to homeschool because they like taking an active role in their children’s education- and huge part of that is getting out in the world and exploring. Finding new places, meeting new people. PLAYING.
Our group, which is an amazing secular group here in Missouri, has regular classes, field trips and play dates. We have the opportunity to choose all sorts of fun things to do. There are clubs for paleontology club, constellations, and robotics. There is a bowling league, roller skating day, gym days and open swims. There are tie-dye parties, trips to train museums, military museums, butterfly exhibits, guitar classes, and so much more that it would be tedious to list it all!
Yesterday, we had our weekly play date at my house. The kids ran around, rode their bikes and took turns doing target practice with a bow and arrow. Then Hannah slept over her friend’s house. Today I picked her up along with a couple of girls and we went to a gym day. Then a whole bunch of kids (we are talking NINE kids here) ended up at my house to play and have dinner with us. Now Patrick is having his best friend sleepover.
Does it sound like my kids need more socialization?