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Wanting to homeschool

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  By Joyce Fetteroll on Friday, July 28, 2000 - 05:18 am:

**I am afraid that they will miss all the other kids and friendships that they have in the public school.**

They probably *will* miss being with their friends everyday. Are there reasons that will prevent you from getting them together after school and on weekends and over the summer?

If they are true friends, they'll want to spend time together. If the friendships are based only on the shared experience of school then don't they deserve the chance to form friendships around common interests?

School does remove the burden from parents' shoulders of getting kids together with other kids but we don't really think about the quality of the socialization. Would we as adults like to be locked in a room with 30 adults of the same age from our town for 6 hours a day only to be let loose for lunch and recess? Would we consider that an ideal way to make friends? Kids make the best of the situation they're forced into, but is the situation really the best?

Homeschooled kids get the opportunity to form friendships with people of all ages based on interests rather than birthyears. There's homeschooling support groups, scouts, art and dance and martial arts classes, 4H, church groups, neighborhood kids and so on. It can be more difficult depending on the town's services and the parent's willingness to take advantage of opportunities, but some homeschooling parents end up finding their kids social lives *too* active!

**But what about the school dances and parties, and all the little things that they will miss out on? I keep thinking about when I was a child in school, and I want them to experience as much of the wonderful qualities as I did.**

And you're forgetting about all the crap you had to put up with in between those parties: being forced to learn about dull things you didn't care about, homework, tests, pop quizzes, rude kids, the humiliation of gym class, *not* being asked to a party (and the social stigma that went with that), the demoralization of being constantly judged by teachers and peers, and so on. Kids pretty much accept the burden of all that because they know they don't have a choice. Sort of the same way people bear being a prisoner.

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