As a homechool mom, the most frequent and, frankly, the most annoying question I get about homeschooling is
“What about socialization?”
Many people seem to think that homeschool kids are all socially backward and sheltered. They feel that they need to be properly socialized or they won’t be able to function in the real world. And by properly socialized, I mean exposed to large groups of children their own age for 8+ hours per day so they can learn to act like the average child their age.
It cracks me up when someone asks me about socialization while our kids are busy playing together!
Their question makes be wonder “What is socialization anyway?”
Definition Of Socialization
Dictionary.com defines socialization as
“a continuing process whereby an individual acquires a personal identity and learns the norms, values, behavior, and social skills appropriate to his or her social position”
I agree that it is important for kids to develop their personal identity and to form their behavior around their values. I believe that kids need to learn social skills. I do not believe that kids need to a school setting to accomplish this. They need real socialization.
The homeschooler’s idea of socialization is:
- family time
- quality time with close friends
- getting to know people around town with similar interests
- church time fellowship
- multi-age co-ops or group lessons
These types of social activities encourage personal development, relationship building, awareness of community, family bonds and social skills all within an environment that provides support and guidance through the socialization process.
That is real socialization.
Do you homeschool? Do you get the socialization question over and over, too? How do you handle it?
Read more homeschool socialization viewpoints today at iHomeschoolNetwork.com.