My entry into the @homeedders challenge

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My friends over at @homeedders have issued a challengethis week dealing with homeschooled kids and the age-old (misguided) question, how will home educated kids learn to socialize?

As a homeschool family for five years now, I am used to getting questions from curious folks about how it all works and, at first, I was just as worried as some of these people were and had many of the same questions. Five years on I am more relaxed about answering the questions and am usually happy to go as deep into homeschooling as the person wants to get.

When speaking with someone about homeschooling there are a few questions that almost always come up (you may be thinking of one of them now) and most of them are valid. The one that really bothers me is the old standard, How will your kids learn to socialize? or aren't you worried they won't be properly socialized?

Hold up! What does that question even mean? This has come to be my response (though usually a little softer like, what exactly do you mean by proper socialization? or how do you quantify socialization?

I really feel like this is one of those automatic responses most people just parrot when they hear homeschooled or home educated.

"Well, what about socialization?"

Yeah, what about it? In my opinion, this is something that happens every day, every time one person is around another person (or people). Maybe you are saying to yourself right now, "but Summertooth, what about learning to interact with other kids their own age?"

Well, to that I would say, when does that ever happen? In what adult social setting are you in a group of people all the same age? In church? At the office? Grocery shopping? Maybe at the baseball game? No, no, no, and no.

Yes, I am sure there is a specific situation where there is a group of people all the same age interacting but, in general, I don't think this happens too often so I am not worried about my kids not "learning" socialization skills in a school setting. In fact, if my son is in a classroom full of third-graders for 6 hours a day who is he learning these social skills from?

Other third graders!?!?

OK, OK, I'm going off the rails here. Let me try to make some sort of point. I am not worried one bit about my kids learning how to act in most social situations. Most everyone learns how to act by observing. That is about all babies do when they are not crying or eating, they just look around.

This is not to say they don't need interaction with kids their age and we do try to find those things like sports, summer camps, and other community activities to help them find a friend and/or and interest in something. I have found with my kids that it usually takes them meeting just one friend and from there it branches out and soon there are five people bouncing on the trampoline on Saturday afternoon.

To me, the question of socialization and home educated kids is a non-issue and I am glad when anyone gets a chance to learn social skills in an every day, real-world way rather than in the pressure cooker of a middle school classroom.

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But how do break your kid’s spirits with peer on peer ridicule? Also, how do you teach them the mind numbing oppression of being trapped 6-8 hours each day at a desk? 😉

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Actually a friend thinks school is critically important to teach kids about all the things they’re going to hate in adulthood like the 9-5 and people who are incessantly annoying and because I’m me I don’t even know if they’re serious or joking 😳🤣

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if my son is in a classroom full of third-graders for 6 hours a day who is he learning these social skills from? Other third graders!?!?

I got stuck at this bit and had to share with my husband! Lol! Love the pug's expression, it's spot on!

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Thanks @homeedders, glad you liked that bit. Don't get me wrong either, I love third graders! :)
I just wish folks would think about what they mean before asking that one question... ;)

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Haha, I never thought otherwise. Putting it that way does put things in a different perspective, however.

Some people agree with me, some people strongly don't and that's OK with me, but I personally feel now that schools no longer educate, they indoctrinate....

I sound like a total hypocrite because I send 1/2pint to school, but only because we're both "stuck" in work. I hope to bring him up (and his future sister) and teach him that you can learn more outside of a classroom than you ever will inside it.

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I happen to agree with that sentiment, @welshstacker but I am careful not to blame the teachers as I think most teachers are awesome people that really care about the kids. It's just the way the system is set up to herd kids through from pre-school to high school that I don't like. How is a teacher supposed to teach algebra to multiple classes of 30 kids? It's just a mess.

I do not believe you are a hypocrite. I am absolutely blessed/fortunate/lucky that I have an ex-wife that makes enough money and is willing to support the family (I'll tell you the story sometime over a beer or three) so I can homeschool our kids. It's true that the stuff you do with the kids outside of school will have a bigger impact on them than the stuff they do in school to pass the time. I also believe that your attitude and awareness of this, plus the stuff you share here show how much you care and you will succeed in raising fine humans.
!BEER

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You guys are both absolutely correct!! Most likely our daughter will go to public school but I will make sure to teach her to.question and to have adventures everywhere as I was lucky enough to have when I grew up.

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Hey @welshstacker, here is a little bit of BEER for you. Enjoy it!

Totally agree :-) Kids don't learn how to socialise from a small group of same-age kids they sit with in school for years. The world is full of interesting people of all ages, and it's important to learn to socialise in all kinds of situations with all kinds of people - school just doesn't prepare kids for this.

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Yes @ownbubble, the things we are able to do out in the world while kids are in school and the folks we've met while doing those things are far more interesting than a classroom full of kids that don't really want to be there. Thanks for stopping by.

I have mention home schooling to the wife a few time but it seems to not resound with her as much as with me. If she does go to public school I will ensure we do as many trips the adventures as possible. Thanks for sharing!!

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The main thing to remember @dwingsworld is if you want to do it you can do it. What I mean by that is no one cares more about your kid than you guys so if you want to home educate him you will succeed.

That dog’s face 🤣

Sums up things nicely doesn’t it 🤣

Do you have the automated responses now? Or maybe it’s just me that had them and is like wait what when someone asks me something unexpected (the most fun one being “but you’re educated why would you homeschool” when it came out that I have a piece of paper from a Uni).

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