Socialization….really

If there is one thing that annoys me the most it’s when people still believe there’s no socialization to homeschooling. Ok, so I realize there may be a few recluse homeschoolers but I’m sure they are few. I’ve never met them. 😉  Ok so here it is Socialization is : to talk to and do things with other people in a friendly way or : to teach (someone) to behave in a way that is acceptable in society at least that’s what http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/socialization says. So according to Merriam-Webster I socialize my kids almost every time we leave the house. Examples: going to Mass and attending Religious Education, trip to the library, playground,BX, or Commissary, field trips, and attending our Catholic Homeschool Group meetings. Just to name a few. I guess it makes me laugh a little when I meet someone at a playground, museum, or event and they mention socialization. So what are my children doing right now? Oh those kids, are playing with other kids, talking to adults, and getting along with each other. If that’s not socialization I should just quit now.  I have been homeschooling for 5 yrs now and trust me there are bigger concerns for me than if my kids are being socialized enough. What do you think about socialization? Did you ever believe that homeschoolers didn’t get socialization ? Have I changed your mind about homeschoolers and socialization?

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One thought on “Socialization….really

  1. You’re right that there is a “socialization” myth. Although I’m not a homeschooler, I got a lot of this argument as a stay-at-home mom when my girls were under kindergarten age. This article helped me confirm what I knew intuitively. It says

    “Play-dates and preschool attendance can enrich your child’s daily life. But socialization–the process of learning how to get along with others–is not the same thing as socializing. Frequent socializing with peers is not necessarily a good way for preschoolers to learn about cooperation, sharing, and emotional self-control. – See more at: http://www.parentingscience.com/preschool-social-skills.html#sthash.oiLB4drn.dpuf

    It states that parents are better than peers for preschool development.

    “Loving, sensitive parents are ideal social tutors. Unlike preschool peers, parents draw on extensive emotional resources when they interact with children. Parents can

    • understand the causes and effects of emotions

    • see things from a child’s perspective

    • interpret the emotions of others

    • match social interactions to a child’s developmental level

    • describe emotions verbally

    • regulate their own emotions

    • appreciate the long-term consequences of social acts
    – See more at: http://www.parentingscience.com/preschool-social-skills.html#sthash.oiLB4drn.dpuf

    Although the above is about preschoolers, I’d say that this applies also to school-aged children. The public school setting is not necessarily the best way for kids to develop socialization skills. It can help but so can all the experiences that you listed in your post. The only way I could see homeschooling being harmful as far a socialization is if the kids are kept very isolated from others for years on end. Other than this extreme example, they will gain all the skills they need from normal life experiences.

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