The Socialization Myth Debunked
April 12, 2023
Socialization the Biblical Way
Your Kids Are Plenty Socialized
Socialized Children? No Thanks!
You’ve Gotta Be Kidding!
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Socialization the Biblical Way
Change is ever-present. Sometimes you find yourself bored, especially when surrounded by a bunch of little ones. Day in, day out, you find yourself looking at the clock a lot in the afternoons, waiting for your husband to come home from work.
But you have to know, change is around the corner. Life is so short. What you see around you now will be drastically different a decade from now. Then ten more years will fly by. It seems impossible because life is so full now. But all of this is fleeting. Make it count.
Look at their little faces now and hold that image in your heart. Because believe me, you will blink your eyes and they will be grown, and you can never get that tiny face in your hands again to snuggle and kiss. Kiss them over and over and fill them up with your affection. Hug until they laugh and wiggle and beg to pull away. Love today like you’ll never hold them again.
And ignore the naysayers who tell you that your kids need more socialization. They get plenty of time to socialize as you go about your homeschool day—doing co-ops with other families, or participating in extracurricular activities, or even just shopping and running errands. My kids are *too* socialized during the regular school year. All we do it seems are classes and field trips. If we’re not doing that, a bunch of kids descend upon our home to do Legos, or our kids are at their friends’ houses playing music, racing around their property, or riding bikes. Too. Much. Socialization. (grin)
And they’re protected from some of the negative aspects of socialization that public school kids encounter regularly, like bullying, inappropriate speech and behavior, and a worldview that’s very different from our own.
These articles from The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine drive this point home:
Socialized or Civilized? by Robert Bortins
Homeschooling, Socialization and the College Environment, by Tim Rice
Inveterate Ironies of Socialization, by Emily Hoffhines
So, Mama, even when those days are long, do your best to cherish and protect your kids. Yes, shelter them; that’s not a bad word, you know. Let the socialization in your homeschool point them to God’s ways, not the world’s ways. And as they mature, they will internalize this, and (God willing) may even teach the same to their own children someday. That’s right: your grands.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
Your Kids Are Plenty Socialized
This topic will just not go away. In fact, I wrote the following bit of advice for THM way back in 2007:
I can’t believe I even need to say anything about socialization. I mean, we all KNOW that the old, “What about lack of socialization?” question just doesn’t hold water . . . I mean none . . . not even a teaspoonful of it. You know that; I know that; we all know that . . . BUT when the question comes, we still find ourselves thinking, “Well, maybe they’ve got a point . . . maybe they do need to be around other kids more.”
Mom and Dad, stop it! Don’t fall for that old lie. Your kids are fine; they certainly don’t need to be around kids all day long to be socialized. You know it. Don’t waver. Don’t get weak in the knees. Stand firm, not only in your response to the “questioner,” but even more importantly, in your own mind and convictions.
Now Dad, here’s where you are vital because sometimes dads fall for the lie even more than wives. Oftentimes, it’s the dad who hears one of the “questioners” and then suddenly becomes a “questioner” too.
“You know maybe it would be good for Josh to take a couple of classes just so he can be around other kids and learn how to interact,” a dad might say to his wife. NO! Don’t go there. If you do, you’ll only increase the uncertainty in your wife’s mind, and you need to be the one who stands firm and leads the way.
Now hear this! There is no uncertainty! Your kids are perfectly socialized, and they don’t need other kids to be better socialized. It’s the TRUTH. Believe it, cling to it, and don’t make me come over there and write another article about it!
That was 16 years ago! It’s time to put this argument to bed . . . for good.
P.S. Have you taken the Homeschooling Mom Personality Test? It’s fun, free, and helpful. It was designed to help you and your children smile as you homeschool the way God created you. Take the test.
About the author
Todd Wilson is a husband, dad, grandpa, writer, homeschool conference speaker, and former pastor. Todd’s humor and down to earth realness have made him a favorite speaker all across the country and a guest on Focus on the Family. As founder of The Familyman and The Smiling Homeschooler, his passion and mission are to remind moms and dads of what’s most important through weekly emails, podcasts, seminars, and books that encourage parents. Todd, and his wife Debbie, homeschool four of their eight children (the other four are homeschool graduates) in northern Indiana and travel America in the Familyman Mobile. You can read more at www.familymanweb.com.
Mercy Every Minute
Deborah Wuehler, TOS Senior Editor
Socialized Children? No Thanks!
Homeschooled children make the best citizens, employees, and basically well-rounded adults. And it starts with the vast amount of positive socialization they receive during their home-educated years. It’s no wonder that by the time these kids finish high school, they are sought after by colleges, employers, communities, and churches alike. They study hard, work hard, are interested in people, and serve others.
The scary thing about the word “socialization” is how our culture defines it. According to the following definitions of socialization, our children just may not fit:
WordNet® 3.0, © 2006 by Princeton University: “socialization” The adoption of the behavior patterns of the surrounding culture; “the socialization of children to the norms of their culture.”
American Heritage Stedman’s Medical Dictionary: “socialization” The process of learning interpersonal and interactional skills that are in conformity with the values of one’s society.
If socialization is a matter of “adopting society’s behavior patterns” and “conforming with its values” no matter how anti-social, or wicked, then, no thank you! We have a much higher authority than society to guide us. Yes, we have the very words of God on the subject. What does the Bible say about socialization?
“He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.” Proverbs 13:20
“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27
We teach our kids to give of themselves, care for their neighbor, love their God, serve their community, and keep unspotted from the world.
Second Corinthians reminds us to come out from among the culture and be a separate, holy people unto our great and mighty God. To do this, we cannot and should not conform to our ever changing culture. We must stand firm in God’s principles.
If we truly want prosperous and successful children, then we need look no further than Psalm chapter 1 which states that prosperity and success come from meditating on the Word of God, day and night. Hard to do when you are in the wrong society. Ours will continue to be the best socialized children out there if they continue to be grounded in God’s Word and are surrounded with good society.
We are doing what’s best for their positive socialization by keeping them Home. Where They Belong.
For further reading check out my article Socialization: What’s the Big Deal? from The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine and a few more:
Homeschooling and Socialization Opportunities, by Heidi Johnson
Scholars Still Want to Know: What About Socialization, by Dr. Brian Ray
Pillar of Knowledge
Roger Smith – You’ve Gotta Be Kidding!
Is someone STILL asking about socialization? You’re KILLING me! A few years ago, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Business conducted a research symposium. One topic was “Are Homeschool Students Socialized?” The researchers were not homeschoolers, but they resoundingly reported the evidence is conclusive—homeschooled college students are among the brightest and most socially engaged students on campus!
Awkward? Different? Peculiar? Nerdy? Says who? Does their opinion matter anyway? Being “like everyone else” is overrated and is rarely a valued trait. In fact, I would consider that to be bland, humdrum, and UNINTERESTING!
We must prepare our children to be different because it takes character to stand out, while not being either ashamed or obnoxious. How can we prepare them?
- Have them teach something to younger children.
- Have them interview older people to learn about their lives.
- Volunteer in the community serving people in need.
- Get a job, earn money, save, be charitable!
- Visit a nursing home and read an Amelia Bedelia story to a resident.
- Take a neighbor’s dog for a walk.
- Let them fail at something that’s hard.
- Let other people see your “unsocialized” child.
About the author
Dr. Roger Smith is a family doctor in rural Louisiana, where he and his wife, Jan, raised four adventurous children who are all grown, making their own mark in the world. He speaks and writes on parenting issues and produces brief videos that can be found on Facebook @ParentingMattersNow
Look What’s Happening in Massachusetts:
April 27–29, 2023
MASSHope 2023 Christian Homeschool and Parenting Convention
Come and hear Deborah Wuehler, senior editor of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, speak. Deborah and her husband, Richard, have been homeschooling their eight children for over twenty-five years. Deborah’s passion is to encourage homeschool families to keep their focus on Christ and His Word, and to let them know they are making the best educational choice possible when they choose to keep their children home where they belong. Meet Deborah and be encouraged through her workshops at MASSHope:
- Socialized Children? No Thank You!
- Why Homeschool?
- Reading Struggles & Overcoming Obstacles
- Remembering Why We Are Homeschooling
- Homeschooling the Rebel
- Womanhood & Discipleship: Our Influence and Ministry
Sheila Chairvolotti from The Old Schoolhouse® will be presenting workshops at MASSHope as well:
- The Christian Online High Schooler: Transcripts to College Prep (and Everything in Between)
- Biblical Online Homeschooling for Every Student
Make April your writing month with creative writing tips and freebies from The Canadian Schoolhouse. Whether you want to encourage a reluctant writer, inspire an avid writer, or need to refresh your family’s writing lessons, you’ll get all you need from the Creative Writing Roundup happening all month long! AND get published by submitting a creative writing piece from you and your children to be included in the Journey Back in Time: Rounding Up Stories about the Past eBook. Catch all the details on The Canadian Schoolhouse home page.
A division of The Old Schoolhouse®
Did you know?
Every class is INCLUDED for ultimate members!
What role does social media play in a person’s life? Examine the effects of media, become more media literate, and reflect on the power of words and wisdom. With the Media Socialization course on SchoolhouseTeachers.com, teens will study both Biblical and scientific evidence for a person’s social nature through written instruction, reading assignments, and more.
Herb Gardening: A Great Place to Start
If you’re looking for a rewarding hobby for a child, herbs are a great place to start. They are easy, inexpensive, fun, and useful. Dig in with this article link from The Old Schoolhouse®.
Hey, Mama! Wouldn’t you like to pause from your busy day and listen in to experts and homeschool parents like you about the beautiful world of homeschooling? This new podcast is designed for you. Each episode connects you to the best conversations that will give you courage and fill your cup so you can keep pouring into your family every single day. Introducing, the Hey Mama! Homeschool Show – brought to you by The Old Schoolhouse®—your trusted homeschool partner for over 20 years.
There’s a reason kids have parents. There’s a reason God created the family. As parents, we should be the main influence in our kids’ lives and guide their interactions to benefit their personalities and potential. As homeschooling parents, that’s exactly what we get to do. Homeschooling provides kids with a social environment and social experience that gives them good habits and prepares them for real life. Stephanie Morrison from The Canadian Schoolhouse has been homeschooling for fifteen years and knows that socialization happens in a variety of ways, including in families. She hosts today’s episode of the Hey, Mama! Homeschool Show, and you won’t want to miss this one: “The Socialization Myth Debunked.” See the show notes for more resources on this topic at HomeschoolShow.com.
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine is now available for FREE online! Click the graphic to read it cover to cover!
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Congratulations to our February winner, Laura Kaspar from North Platte, Nebraska
for the month of April
In this online math program, teacher John Zimmerman is committed to helping students overcome their math struggles. He has a lengthy list of degrees and accomplishments (including, but not limited to, a Bachelor’s in Mathematics, a Master’s in Educational Technology, and experience as a business owner) that make him a qualified math teacher. But what matters more than any of those is his desire to help students get better at math. He promises on his website to always give 110% to his students. If students commit to keep going, he promises to help them achieve things they never thought possible in their math instruction.
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Go to the contest page of our site where you can ENTER TO WIN a 1-year subscription to your choice of a math course at TabletClass Math.
What About Socialization?
What is socialization anyway? Veteran homeschoolers provide solid responses to the tough questions: Is our home a viable answer? Is socialization necessary? This E-Book provides the answers you seek, and the encouragement you need.
Everyday Copywork Sample from SchoolhouseTeachers.com
Click on the image for the full free printable pdf.
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