Picking Things Up from the Culture, Homeschool Edition


If you're a regular reader, you may have noticed that, when speaking of my conservative evangelical homeschool upbringing, I frequently say "I was told X" rather than "my parents told me X." There is a reason for that---sometimes I can't remember whether my parents actually taught me some specific aspect of purity culture or political conservatism or whether I just picked it up from the Christian homeschool culture around me. After all, I read the homeschool magazines we subscribed to, listened t … [Read more...]

3 Ways Homeschoolers Actually Socialize Differently than School Kids


I recently came upon a post titled 3 Ways Homeschoolers Socialize Differently than School Kids. Curious, I clicked. I should have known better. Predictably, the post was written by a homeschooling mother who has no idea what it's like to actually be a homeschooled child. In this post I will respond to the points made by blogger Jennifer Fitz, speaking from my experience as a homeschool alumna.1. Homeschool kids break their own ice. I picked up my son from his Confirmation kick-off event, a … [Read more...]

In Which Sally Talks to Adults


We'd only been at the get-together five minutes when I realized that my daughter Sally was engaged in a romping game of tag with a twenty-something family friend of my in-laws. At Sally's instigation, the game soon turned to hide and seek, and Sally was giggling under a table while her new friend was walking around the table pretending to not be able to find her.This is not the first time this has happened. When Sean had some of his friends over for a cookout last summer, Sally was quickly … [Read more...]

Homeschoolers and Socialization: What Is “Fringe”?

When I write about the socialization problems I experienced as a homeschooler, a common response from homeschool advocates is that my experience was just fringe---and that it doesn't in any way represent homeschoolers as a whole. This made me wonder: Just what is "fringe"?When it comes to socialization, HSLDA is still touting 1997 numbers showing that most homeschoolers are involved in a variety of outside activities, including things like 4H, bible club, and music classes. There is one part … [Read more...]

Homeschool Parents Need To Take Socialization Seriously


I've been thinking more about socialization, and I think I've reached a point of clarity. Ever since writing my first post on homeschooling and socialization several years ago, many people who attended public school have told me that they, too, had struggles with socialization, and others have insisted that there are homeschoolers who are well socialized in diverse circles and end up with no socialization problems at all. The issue is obviously more complicated than well-socialized public … [Read more...]

Homeschooling and the Parent-Child Socialization Divide


Lana over at Wide Open Ground has been hitting it out of the park lately with her posts on homeschooling. The most recent two, one by her and one a guest post, both bowled me over, because they put words to things I have long felt but never fully articulated.In the first, Lana explains that, no matter how hard they might try, first generation homeschool parents can't actually know what it's like to be a homeschooled kid. Here is how she explains that: I am so often amazed at the … [Read more...]

Homeschooling, Socialization, and Me


When it comes to homeschooling, the two issues people seem to be most concerned about are academics and socialization. In yesterday's post I talked about academics, and in today's post I will address socialization.I was homeschooled from kindergarten through high school. For that entire period, the kids I interacted with regularly were almost universally the children of my parents' friends. Because my parents' friends were, like them, white, middle class, evangelical homeschool parents, my … [Read more...]