Homeschooling is becoming a more popular option among today’s families, and yet, it remains somewhat controversial. Many people wonder if homeschoolers lack social skills because they are not in a traditional school setting with their peers on a daily basis. Homeschoolers having difficulty making and maintaining relationships has long been a concern for those considering homeschooling their children.
Despite these doubts, studies and homeschoolers alike have made it clear that this is certainly not the case. In this article, we will dive deep into the question of whether or not homeschoolers lack social skills, with 13 helpful outlines.
1: Is Homeschooling Becoming More Popular?
Homeschooling is becoming more popular in the United States and around the world. Whether it’s parents wanting a more hands-on approach to their children’s education, or children wanting to pursue a more specialized curriculum, more and more parents are turning to homeschooling to teach their kids. In the United States alone, the number of homeschooled children between the ages of 5 and 17 doubled between 1999 and 2012, from
77 million to approximately 4 million.
Additionally, trends show that this number is continuing to rise, with the most recent estimates around 7 million.
2: What Are the Common Concerns about Homeschooling?
Despite its rising popularity, there are various concerns about homeschooling that parents and educators often question. One of the primary concerns is whether or not homeschooled children will be able to develop adequate social skills as they don’t spend their days with their peers in a traditional school setting.
Without opportunities to interact with their peers in a school environment, they may find themselves ill-equipped in social settings. Without school-sponsored clubs, teams, or activities to join, homeschooled children may have difficulty integrating with their peers outside of the home, which could lead to difficulty in devloping functional social skills.
3: How Do Homeschoolers Overcome the Lack of Social Interaction?
Fortunately, homeschoolers have multiple options to help ensure they don’t miss out on instrumental social opportunities. Homeschooling curriculums often include a plethora of field trips, so kids are still able to visit museums, parks, and other places to socially interact with their peers. Additionally, many local homeschooling organizations and co-operatives exist for families wanting to explore other options.
Through these various resources, families can find social opportunities for their homeschooled children such as academic competitions, social meet-ups, and even art classes.
4: Do Homeschoolers Have Difficulty Making Friends?
Despite the various resources that homeschoolers are able to take advantage of, the question of whether or not they are able to make friends still remains. Studies have found that homeschoolers have better interpersonal and social skills than those in traditional schools, however, they may have some difficulty making friends outside of the homeschooling community. This is mostly due to the fact that they don’t get to interact with their peers in the same way other students do.
But on the flipside, they are often more confident and at ease in their interactions due to the smaller, more intimate setting that homeschooling provides.
5: Do Homeschoolers Have Adequate Social Skills?
Despite being afforded fewer social opportunities, research suggests that homeschooled kids still possess adequate social skills. Studies show that these children are no less likely to engage in positive relationships and social settings than their peers. Furthermore, homeschoolers may even possess higher emotional intelligence as a result of homeschooling since they are able to take more initiative in their learning and interpersonal interactions.
In addition, the unique curriculum that homeschoolers are able to explore can lead to enhanced social skills and greater self-assurance.
6: What Are the Benefits of Homeschooling for Social Skills?
Homeschooling provides many opportunities for social skill development that are difficult to replicate in a traditional school setting. Homeschoolers have the chance to engage in more meaningful conversations in a more intimate environment. Furthermore, homeschooled children can take more initiative in their learning and be more creative in their academic pursuits, which can lead to increased confidence in social settings.
Additionally, homeschoolers are exposed to more diversity as they have the opportunity to interact with a larger variety of people in different settings.
7: Do Homeschoolers Have Access to Parental Guidance?
Because homeschooled children spend more time with their parents, they often have greater access to parental guidance when it comes to developing social skills. This can help them better understand the norms of social interaction, allowing them to engage more comfortably with their peers. Homeschoolers also have access to a larger range of resources than their peers in traditional schools, as they are able to take part in specialized programs specifically designed for homeschoolers.
With the addition of parental guidance, these resources can often be used to explore social skills in more detail and ensure adequate skill development.
8: Are Homeschoolers at a Disadvantage?
In addition to the various benefits homeschoolers have in developing social skills, there is evidence to suggest that they may also be at a disadvantage in some areas. For example, homeschoolers may have difficulty fitting in with their peers in a traditional school setting since they lack the same lifestyle and academic experiences.
Additionally, since there is less structure within a homeschooling environment, sometimes essential social skills may go overlooked or are put on the back burner compared to the curriculum.
9: How Can We Ensure Social Skill Development?
To ensure social skill development, homeschoolers should be actively exposed to various social opportunities. This can include joining clubs, sports teams, or even taking part in community events. Homeschoolers should also be encouraged to take part in group activities with their peers, so they become more comfortable interacting with others.
Additionally, parents should be aware of the importance of relationship building and ensure their children are paying attention to their social interactions.
10: Is Homeschooling an Appropriate Choice for Socially Awkward Kids?
Homeschooling, for some kids, may be an appropriate choice for those who are feeling particularly socially awkward or anxious. Homeschooling can be viewed as a supportive environment, as it allows these kids the opportunity to learn in a more comfortable setting. Parents can also customize the learning system to reflect their child’s needs, allowing them to work at their own pace, helping to build confidence.
Additionally, the smaller class sizes can be beneficial, as kids are less likely to get overwhelmed and can take more ownership over their education.
11: Do Homeschoolers Need Special Support?
There are times when homeschoolers need special support to ensure they are adequately developing their social skills. It may be necessary to involve outside adults in the homeschooling process, such as mentors or educators, in order to provide feedback and guidance on interpersonal relationships and dynamic.
Parents are also encouraged to involve their kids in activities outside of the home, if possible, in order to ensure necessary social opportunities. Ultimately, finding a balance between home and out of home activities is key to ensure social skill development.
12: Can Homeschoolers Survive in a Traditional School Setting?
Despite their lack of experience in a traditional school setting, homeschoolers can certainly survive and even thrive, if the transition is managed properly. Individually tailored curriculums help ensure that homeschoolers are up to speed academically, while providing them the opportunity to pursue advanced studies should they choose to do so. Furthermore, parents can help provide insight into the social nuances of a traditional school setting, so kids can continue to thrive socially.
Ultimately, the question of whether how schoolers lack social skills can be answered in the negative. Despite the concerns and struggles, homeschoolers are no less likely to have successful social interactions than their peers in traditional schools.
With access to more opportunities and support, homeschoolers can develop the necessary social skills to ensure they don’t miss out on any meaningful relationships and life experiences. END.