Friday, October 10, 2008

Homeschooling and Socialization are not Mutually Exclusive

I'm not sure who it was that thought proper socialization can only occur in a classroom surrounded by peers.  That aside, home schooled children do have ample opportunities provided for socialization.  Our kids participate in a variety of sports, religious education classes, etc. but our favorite "social" event is our homeschool co-op.  We have been involved with our co-op for 7 years and our children have developed friendships with their classmates that often run deeper and truer than ones they could have had in a "regular" school setting.

Socialization is one benefit of co-op, but they also get an opportunity to learn from other teachers and participate in group projects that just could not happen at home.  Our co-op meets once a week for three classes with a snack period between our second and third class.  We have classes divided by age or grade and parents take turns teaching the different classes. Over the years we have had some really terrific classes in co-op.

We have studied:

Zoology
Oceanography
Photography
Drawing
Creative Writing
Poetry
Elections
Spanish
Sign Language
Inventions
Saints
Other Cultures
Birds
Chess
Speech
Drama
Knitting
Basic Sewing
Simple Machines
Presentations
Art of every kind
Church History
Fun with Football
Music


My children look forward to co-op every fall.  They love the time spent with friends and the unique classes and projects they are able to participate in.  I am not concerned in the least that my children are not properly socialized.  I know I didn't need co-op to accomplish that, but at least I can mention our participation in social activities to allay the fear of others that have bought into the socialization idea.

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