Public schooled kids are in a room with 29 other kids the same age year-round. They spend 9 hours a day with this age group and no other. It’s no surprise that they are only able to relate to their peers, kids the exact same age.
On the other hand, homeschooled kids interact with adults and kids of all ages on a daily basis. They are exposed to a variety of social settings such as trips to the store, the bank, the library, the park, and the doctor. They don’t sit in a classroom all day long.
When public schooled children go on field trips they are rarely permitted to ask questions. If they are permitted, they ask at most one question per child. There simply is not enough time for the entire classroom to listen as each child’s question is answered.
On the other hand, homeschooled kids go on field trips in small groups (family). They ask as many questions as they want and often have questions prepared ahead of time. They’re not intimidated by adults or kids of other ages. They freely ask their questions and listen intently to the answers. This is part of socialization.
In addition, homeschooled children take field trips much more often, sometimes as much as once a week. This exposes them to more opportunities to socialize than public schooled kids.
Homeschooled kids are taught as part of the family and, as part of that family, they interact throughout the school day with younger siblings and older siblings. They often say their best friends are their siblings.
The same is true of their communities. Homeschooled children are part of their church groups, volunteer groups, 4-H clubs, and other community groups. They volunteer as part of their education, so they have many more opportunities to socialize with other age groups and other socio-economic groups.
Simple things that we do during the day provide ample opportunity for our kids to socialize:
- reading the newspaper
- talking on the phone
- playing pretend
- making and eating lunch
- going to the bank to withdraw cash or deposit checks
- running a home business
- doing laundry
- making dinner
- participating in volunteer activities
- reading and discussing
- caring for animals/pets
- writing a check and paying bills
We take for granted the wonderful things that make our families whole. Just being together is a large part of being a family. Teaching your children at home gives them security to freely express themselves and engage in conversations with others. It’s the perfect breeding ground for improving social skills. 🙂