So your homeschooled children won’t know the current trends in movies, music, and fashion. So they may not be the talkative ones at the party. (Then again, they may be. My homeschooled seven-year-old couldn’t stop talking if his life depended on it! And he even talks to strangers every chance he gets.)
The thing is, if your children come from a Christian family, they shouldn’t be listening to or watching the same things as the rest of the world anyway – homeschooled or not.
Aside from modern trends, what else will they miss out on by staying home? Basically, they aren’t going to learn to raise their hands before speaking (unless they go to Sunday School or a homeschool co-op), or stand in line (unless they ever happen to visit a grocery store). They won’t learn to work as a team (unless they have brothers and sisters or cousins or friends), and they’ll never learn to get on with people their own age (which they will really need to learn if they ever want to…um…what? Attend a public school? – Sorry, it was the only scenario I could think of to use that particular skill.)
What about all of the public school kids who are socially backwards? No one ever says, “Don’t let your kids get too interested in math and science; it will turn them into geeks, and they won’t get invited to parties. How else will they socialize?” No, people realize that our society benefits from people who get wrapped up in their own projects and obsessions, especially in the fields of medicine, mathematics, electronics, and any of the sciences. We need a few more people who can focus on their passions. Parents are proud of their focused, albeit shy, children. The world looks on and says, “To each his own…unless you homeschool…then you’re depriving your children.”
No one ever says, “Don’t send your kids to public school; what if they become a Goth or a drug-pusher?” No, I think that this whole socialization issue was just fabricated because it was the only thing people could think of that was even remotely wrong with the idea of homeschooling. And I don’t think it’s wrong at all. Besides, most homeschooling families are large enough that the children learn to socialize as a matter of course. On top of that, this whole idea of socialization needing to happen at school is a relatively new concept. People used to keep their children at home and train them in a trade. And they were way more social back then. Between church functions, barn raisings, dinner parties, visiting, etc, nearly every child learned to function in society. Even more important, they learned to run and raise a family.
What is the greatest barrier to socialization today? Not homeschooling, but entertainment. I see couples out to dinner where both of them are playing with their iPhones instead of speaking to each other. I have known a few people to sit through a family get-together totally engrossed in a magazine or a hand-held video game device the entire time. When the family gets home after work/school each evening, what is usually the first thing to happen? The television gets turned on. Then we proceed to ignore and shush our kids for the remainder of the evening. When they ask us to play a board game with them, we say, “I don’t have time.” Do they see us as the liars we really are? Okay, well, now I’m just ranting, but I think you see my point(s).
- There are plenty of socialization opportunities out there, free for the taking. It doesn’t matter where you go to school.
- Why is socialization so freakishly important, anyway? Introverts still get married and have families, friends, jobs, etc.