On one hand, homeschooling can be seen as the right opportunity for a child to develop qualitative skills and understand their interests. On the other, there are many people who argue that homeschooled kids may lack certain social skills which may lead to them being awkward in the future.
In this article, let us discuss if there is any truth to this notion, and also take a look at how homeschooled kids acquire social skills.
What Is The Culture Surrounding Homeschooling?
The concept of homeschooling is becoming increasingly relevant in the present world with some data suggesting the number of homeschoolers is increasing every year. This could be due to the focus on individual coaching and specialized attention that homeschooling helps to provide.
At the same time, homeschooling parents are often seen to be taking extreme efforts to ensure their kids do not miss out on the bigger picture of what is happening in the world. In this sense, they might often indulge in activities that keep their kids well informed and well connected to people and the world. Most parents who opt for homeschooling also tend to believe in being strict with their kids’ studies and activities.
This could be because of the fact that they do not want their children to become too accustomed to their comfort zones and boundaries. While providing a secure and regulated place to study, this strictness might be seen as excessive by some.
Do Homeschooled Kids Lack Social Skills?
When it comes to social skills, homeschooled kids are often seen to be missing out on activities such as attending classrooms and interacting with regular classmates. This could be a major cause of concern since it may lead them to miss out on fundamental social skills such as getting along with others and holding conversations. Additionally, since their schedule often does not accommodate any extra-curricular activities, homeschooled children are often deprived of potent group activities such as sports, music and art which can help to foster productivity and confidence.
Furthermore, technology-based communication or home-educational conferences can sometimes come up with limited success since these may not always work in helping kids to acquire interpersonal skills and appropriate behaviour.
How Do Homeschooled Kids Acquire Social Skills?
Despite these apprehensions, there are of course certain ways in which social skills can be developed in homeschooled children. Most importantly, since homeschooling parents are already involved with their children’s activities, they can take efforts to provide their kids with appropriate group activities for developing social skills.
This may include organising week-long field trips, attending community events or taking part in school home education programs. Apart from this, homeschooled kids can also be given access to interactive learning tools and activities that can keep them engaged and provide them with a sense of belonging. Such activities could include online role-playing games, online educational forums, online study groups and social media platforms.
This can help the child to get a better understanding of how to communicate, listen and take part in debates without feeling isolated.
It is important to note that, just like any other child, homeschooled kids too need to be provided with adequate social opportunities that can help them to understand people and build connections. While parents can provide this support, it is also important for society to extend its hand to ensure that homeschooled kids do not feel disconnected from the wider world. Only in this way can the apprehensions surrounding homeschooled kids being socially awkward can be addressed.