Homeschooling an Only Child Questions

by Jandfish
(US)

Homeschooling an Only Child

Homeschooling an Only Child

Concerned mom needs some help and guidance with homeschooling an only child...


We have been homeschooling our only daughter for about 15 months now. We are in an homeschool extension program through an umbrella school. Up until we started homeschooling 15 months ago, she had been in public school. So far we like homeschooling, but I have a question about getting our daughter to want to socialize with other homeschoolers?

She is a sweet and caring girl and is a good kid. She is in the middle of 9th grade. We had tried a co-op school a few months ago to supplement our homeschool curriculum. She was in a band program at the public school and so this co-op school had that for her. She decided after a few months that she no longer wanted to play an instrument and that the homeschool kids were "stuck up" to her. We have sorta let her decide whether she wanted to continue playing in the band or not, but the homeschool kids were not "stuck up" to her, but because of the fact we were only in the co-op school because of band, we came out.

I seem to have to really push her to want to get involved with homeschool social events ALL the time. I feel if I let her have her way on this all the time she will stay in the house and never want to venture out and give up the chance to make new friends. She has one friend that comes over to visit. She has been friends with her since kindergarten in public school. This friend is still attending public school and for the most part is a good kid herself. She sometimes can make my daughter feel "bad" about being homeschooled by telling my daughter how "great" things are going at public school. Her friend has lots of other friends and this upsets my daughter. What should I do? Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

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Jan 31, 2012
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Homeschooling an only child suggestions
by: Michaela

Well first I would like to address the common myth (even among homeschoolers themselves) that all homeschoolers are friends, just because they are homeschooled. As a 17-year-old graduated homeschooled student, I can say this from personal experience. We are quite like "normal" teenagers who like to connect with others like ourselves – whether or not we go to the same school as each other.

What are your daughter’s passions and interests? Finding these out would be a good way to start – if she’s interested in drama, local community colleges with theater programs often have open auditions for anyone to come and join. Politics, art, dance, photography, and other groups also work in the same context. A quick browse of your city/state website should produce options for your daughter. Community centers tend to have classes and groups during the year that are easily accessible.

It’s important for your daughter to take part in this. Give her some sources and let her make the search. From my experience, I get way more excited if I have a part in the search for things to invest my time, rather than to show up at something my parents did the search for. Although I must admit, they know me so well that I wouldn’t completely begrudge them. (:

As for her friend, my best friend is from public school as well. While at some points I have wished to be public schooled (before I realize that I would hate it academically), the two of us had a deep conversation that has opened my eyes to both sides of the spectrum. For example, all those times that I wondered if I should go into her public school to be there for her through some rough times, she was wishing that she could be homeschooled like me! Often the whole picture isn't looked at.

It's better to have a great quality of friendship than a great quantity of friendships, and I've found this out in multiple ways through my life.

Hope this helps!

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