Debunking the Socialization Myth
April 14, 2021
Free to Socialize
You’re educating your children on your timeline, your schedule. They’re plenty socialized, probably because they actually have way more time to be active (with all different age groups) than their public school socialized peers. Remember, you’re the boss, Mama. You set the standard for their socialization. And Daddy is the bigger boss. Be on the same page. 🙂
If you’re caught up in the mindset of copying the public school model of education, you may feel a little burned out, and your kids are gonna be spinning, too. Remember when we were in school all those years ago? We may have just been getting into an art project or finishing up a really good story for a creative writing assignment when all of a sudden, the bell rang. Loudly.
Like little sheep, we had to fold everything up, put it away, and unnaturally switch our brains into another mode: math or reading or some other session being taught next. We hustled from room to room, down hallways and across the campus, only to show up (on time) for the next requirement on the check-list. It had to be that way because it was a program. A system. And a lot of people besides us were in that program, marching to the same pre-scheduled drumbeat.
Your house is different, Mama. Your children’s schooling is uniquely theirs. They get to work for hours on that LEGO® invention, and if they’re really getting into it, you’re likely not going to blow a whistle in their ear and tell them to stop so they can “do art” next. Maybe art is the furthest thing from their mind right now. Let them finish their engineering masterpiece first.
The bell does not dictate your homeschool. You are not a slave to it. You’re free and your kids are, too. In fact, they’re free to socialize however they want . . . with the elderly neighbor planting flowers in her garden, with the toddlers they assist at Sunday School, with the sweet cashier who offers them stickers at check out.
Yup, your kids are plenty socialized. Let these articles from The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine encourage you as you raise up your children in your own unique way.
And remember, Mama. . .
Education should be joyful, and many times it should actually be spontaneous, as well. They will far more clearly remember what you taught them when fully engaged, rather than forced. Deep conversations, lots of interaction, pursuing their own interests, having fun while learning—that’s the stuff that’s going to stick, Mama.
Don’t forget to live life during your homeschooling years. Just because school may have felt like a prison to you as a child (and I could tell you stories) does not mean it should even come close to resembling such a thing for your children, no matter what age they are. Enjoy learning with them. Do it in freedom with a light heart.
Raising Real Men
Learning to Live in Community
“What about socialization?” If you haven’t heard that, you haven’t been homeschooling long. Of course, it’s a little different since the pandemic isolated everyone! Is there any reason to be concerned, though?
Socialization, helping kids learn how to live in community with others, is important. It just doesn’t happen easily in school. Think about it. Is a group of thirty people your own age and ability level really a preparation for the personal interactions you have as an adult? Not to mention that students are spending less time than ever talking together.
How do kids learn to live in community? By learning from those who already know how! After all, we’re raising them to be adults, not children. They need to learn how to live in a family, be a parent, interact with neighbors, get along with people older and younger, be a part of a church family, communicate with coworkers, and talk to people in business and government. There’s someone who knows how to do all those things—you!
Be present. Just having your kids with you as you lead the life of a Christian adult is one of the best things you can do to socialize them in the way they need most!
Be intentional. Talk to them about why you are handling things the way you are. We had a great conversation one day on the way to appeal our property tax assessment about how to make a gracious appeal to authority.
Role play. Some of our kids will easily pick up on how to interact well with people, but others—not so much. Role-playing before social events can help them think through how they ought to communicate.
Teach principles. Point your kids to the Biblical principles that explain how we interact with each other. Verses like these help our kids learn the best kind of socialization:
“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves” (Philippians 2:3).
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).
“Let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” (James 1:19).
Don’t worry about what your kids are missing by homeschooling. Honestly, it’s not much. Instead, give your kids the socialization they will really need as Christian adults. We think you’ll do a great job!
Hal & Melanie
P.S. Make getting together again less awkward and more fun with our Craftsman Crate Party Packs!
Mixed Martial Arts for early learners – online videos use MMA techniques designed for ages 4 to 7 to develop gross motor skills, coordination, & more.
What about Socialization?
Are you tired of hearing it yet? “The Question”?
You know, the one that people who attended the public school ask when they learn you homeschool your children.
It’s a question brimming with misconceptions.
WHAT ABOUT SOCIALIZATION?
It can be intimidating for new homeschoolers.
And it can be annoying for veteran homeschoolers who hear that question again and again (and again and again…).
But it’s important to realize that the people who ask generally know very little about homeschooling (you might be the first homeschooler they’ve met).
MISCONCEPTIONS CAN BE WACKY
No doubt, it really can be frustrating to repeatedly hear that question.
And it’s not just the question. There are a lot of additional erroneous “observations” people make about socialization.
I asked our Homeschool Adventure Facebook friends what kinds of things people who don’t homeschool say to them about socialization. Some of the comments they shared are really wacky.
Here are a few of the more common misconceptions:
- You must spend 6+ hours a day with kids your own age to be socialized.
- Your kids are “sheltered” because they don’t think/talk/act like other kids their age.
- You baby your kids by not allowing them to be exposed to bullies so they can learn to stand up for themselves.
(If you’re on Facebook and want to see the full list, here’s a link to the post.)
It’s obvious that some of these folks don’t believe homeschoolers are adequately socialized. But perhaps we would be wise to take an unbiased look at the whole concept of “socialization.”
WHAT IS SOCIALIZATION, REALLY?
With tenderness and joy (Phil. 1:4),
P.S. Are we battling a culture of rudeness? Get a FREE list of Good Manners!
Look What’s Happening!
Florida Parent Educators Association presents HEROIC: The 2021 FPEA Homeschool Convention on May 27-29 in Orlando. Registration (March 2 to May 3) is $75 for FPEA Members; $115 for Non-Members.
Share this newsletter with a friend, and be sure to let those CONSIDERING homeschooling know about the enormous FREE info-pack which awaits them here: www.TryHomeschooling.com.
Congratulations to Carrie Flora from MT, who won our February giveaway!
for the month of April
History by Mail
History by Mail
History is fascinating, and teaching my kids real history is an essential part of our homeschool. Whenever I can add an element to enhance history, I try to add that extra allure to capture their imagination to the past. History by Mail is a unique way for your kids to learn about history. There is just something special about holding a piece of history in your hands and seeing the documentations yourself that makes history come alive.
History by Mail is a subscription mail service that mails you historical replicas of documents and letters from our rich American heritage. The focus is on American history with some historical events outside of America that may be relevant to the historical themes and enhance learning about our history.
My daughter could not wait to see what shows up each month. Every letter that we received she wanted to see if she could find out more about the history and people behind the document. We would dig deeper into each historical topic and/or the people within the documents.
History by Mail would make a wonderful gift for someone who loves history and a homeschool family. This is a fun and educational way for younger kids to learn more history from various sources. Older students could use the topics for a research paper, biographies, and other writing assignments. There is a lot that you could do with History by Mail to enhance your homeschool. Make history come alive as you dive into historical documents and letters.
Go to the contest page of our site where you can ENTER TO WIN a 1-year subscription to History by Mail
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