Socialization Beyond the Home
Click here to read part 1 of this post, Socialization Begins at Home
I’m so happy to be able to share some encouragement with you again! Grab a cup of tea or coffee, and let’s continue talking about how you can incorporate aspects of relationship and social awareness outside your home.
First, your example of how you live and work is an important resource to your children when they are interacting with the world around them. Trips to the grocery store, Grandma and Grandpa’s house, and the bank all show your child how they should behave and introduce them to the types of things they will someday be expected to do. These are valuable life lessons, which they will get to take part in more often when you homeschool. You can utilize this time to let them be involved in daily activities in an age-appropriate way as much as possible. They are learning in increments! Observation is a fabulous teacher. Just ask a young person how many things they have learned by watching YouTube videos!
In addition to daily life skills, you might want to use some of your time to let your children delve into their gifts and interests. These activities help your children learn a skill, gain some independence, and make important friendships. There are so many opportunities available today to seek out what we may call “extra-curricular” activities.
Some of these activities include:
- Volunteer Activities in your Church, Kids Ministry, or Youth Group
- Food Banks and Food Pantries
- Scouts/Royal Rangers/Trail Life/American Heritage Girls/Missionettes
- Team Sports
- Music Lessons/Band/Orchestra/Choir
- Online Classes
- Playdates and Meetups
- Nature Walks
- Studio Art or Crafts Classes
- Martial Arts
- Co-ops and Homeschool Support Groups
Most of the time, simple internet searches or asking around your community can give you ideas to supplement your chosen area of learning.
One thing you should keep in mind while you are looking for extra activities is to reflect on your season of life. Remember what the most important things are to your family. If you haven’t already, make a list of your “why” in homeschooling, and make a realistic budget of where your weekly time priorities should lie. It can be very easy to over-extend yourself and your family by saying “yes” to every opportunity that comes your way or to compare yourself with what another family is able to do. For our family, dinners together are important. We try not to be rushing around when it’s that time of day. When my kids were younger, we chose one church involvement group and one outside involvement activity for all the kids. Now each child is able to pick one area of interest they would like to pursue. Your family is different from any other family, and will impact the world in an unique way. Think about how you are special, and enjoy this time of growth and exploration!