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Monday, August 12, 2013

Homeschool Socialization: Vacation Swim Buddies


And this is how socialization is done...As I sit watching my kids swim, I'm struck by how easy it can be for kids to make friends - well at least vacation swim buddies.


My youngest doesn't really have the hang of swimming entirely yet. However, she's getting mighty bold in her Disney Princess on one side, and permanent marker mama-drawn cartoon elephant on the other swim inflatable ring. She also refuses to go down a water slide.  That didn't matter to her new friend. 






As my three kids were enjoying the waterpark, in walks a little girl about my youngest daughter's age. My older two were busy going down the slide time and time again, and my littlest went over to enjoy the kiddie park. 

That's when it happened:  socialization - you know the big "s" word you're warned your child will never receive enough of. 

Well, it happened - Without any classrooms filled with peers. 

It happened, without any lines to stand straight in, waiting. 

It happened.  Without changing classrooms to the sound of a bell. 

It happened without a teacher to show her how. 

It happened without any prompting, and without a mama pulling her sheepishly crying and clinging from behind a long denim skirt.

Right there, in the hotel waterpark, my daughter was socializing. 

And, it happens everyday.  Homeschooled children, thought to be overprotected hermits, actually meet, talk to and socialize with other children without a classroom of 30 other children telling them how. 

I realize there's sometimes more to those well-meaning worried comments about socialization, but if the worry is that a child will be holed up in a tower like Rapunzel for 18 years, let me set your mind at ease...

I care very little if my children ever learn that they are accepted in a particular class or group because of their income level or the clothing they choose to wear.

I care very little if my children ever learn that they are not good enough because a teacher or a bully told them what their "proper" place is in the school ranks of hierarchy.

I care very little if my children ever learn that their hair is the wrong color, they don't have the proper piercings, or tattoos to fit in.

I care very little if my children ever learn that they are the best merely because they made the cheerleading squad.

I care very little if my children ever learn that they are special because they made the cut into the "smart kids" "accelerated program".

I care very little if my children ever learn that they are nobody because they weren't invited to the prom.

I care very little if my children ever learn how to ride a school bus.

I care very little if my children ever learn how they rank among their peers academically, socially, athletically, or in any other regard.

Because none of this is reality in the real world after high school.


The kind of socialization that I want for my children happens.  It happens naturally and sometimes in a hotel waterpark.



2 comments:

  1. Love this! Sharing :) I have seen the same thing with my kids many, many times. Isn't it amazing how well our unsocialized kiddos do in the real world ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing this! And, yes. It's quite amazing the things that happen when you let these kiddos be who they were made to be.

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Socialization...It's Why I Homeschool

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