Sunday, September 15, 2013

Too Busy Playing With Friends To Be Socialized

I read this blog post, and laughed aloud! It's such a perfect picture of what homeschooling really looks like. We intend every year to get around to "socializing" our kids, but we're so busy doing Karate, going to friends' birthday parties, hanging out with church friends, spending time with the neighbors, playing at the park, running around at orchestra practice and just enjoying each other, that we never actually get around to it!

Watching Little Mister, my least social child, at the birthday party this weekend, I said a prayer of thanks again that he can school at home. Although he enjoys people, he is smart like I was, and just isn't thinking along the same lines as the other kids his age. Putting him in school would not change his nature, as it did not change mine; it just gives lots of semi-supervised opportunities for torment and bullying, which tears apart kids' self-image. Instead, we gather at family events with a wide range of ages and interests. Lots of parents around means that kids aren't usually mean to each other. Mister can find an adult or an older kid who will talk with him about the physics of using the teeter-totter as a catapult, while his little brother runs around yelling like a banshee for the sheer joy of it. 

It's not that Mister is unsocialized; if he gets with a buddy who likes Minecraft or LEGOs or trains or science, he'll have a great time. He just struggles as I did with activities that are highly athletic, and not too cerebral. (Bean, on the other hand, thrives in such a situation!) Still, by the end of the birthday party, he'd found a niche and still had a great time. 

For Curly, my super-social child, it's just a matter of finding people. Just about anyone will do: she makes friends at the drop of a hat. But her closest friend plays Breyer horses with her, and they build fairy houses and both have pet bunnies. 

Bean is surprisingly extroverted too. He loves people, and loves to have a good time. He's certainly always ready for a party. Abi loves to find a group of girls to play and giggle with. Her bestie moved away this year, which made her sad. I hope she finds another good friend soon. Until she does, she has a lot of kids around to play with!

1 comment:

  1. My youngest son is 19. We were just talking about how we were true introverts. We love people and social activities but HAVE to have down time. Quiet. Contemplative time. I love how home schooling allowed us to be who we are and learn to value our differences instead of forcing each student into a mold. This is a great post. Our Lil G is going to be 8 next month and loves outings. One of my goals this year was adding more social aspects into her schooling- helping her have safe places to learn HOW to behave and use her nice hands. Ugh. It is taking skill to dance around that subject when she goes to drop in therapies at the school and WANTS so badly to be in class with the other students. The school environment is in place for learning and I have decided it isn't the best environment go Lil G to learn in. So, we will keep socialization and learning separate so that she can make as much gains as possible. ( thank you for helping me find the words I needed!) wink.