Everyone always asks how to keep kids socialized while homeschooling. This question is in fact, one of the most annoying ones a homeschooling parent will be asked. As a way to remind you and those who are curious about homeschooling that there are multiple ways to keep your kids involved in learning social skills, we have compiled a list of common ways to keep kids socialized.
How To Keep Kids Socialized While Homeschooling
If you are new to homeschooling and concerned about your children staying active and learning social skills, this list of places and ways to keep kids socialized is a great place to begin. Many aspects of socialization in children come naturally with your day to day interactions, but this list will remind you of extra ways to keep your kids socially active.
Friends and family. Don’t forget that one of the easiest ways to keep kids socialized is right within your own circle of friends and family. Whether they are transitioning from public school to homeschooling or you are beginning their education right away with homeschooling in the early years, these are great ways to keep them active socially.
Siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents all offer different types of socialization your children need. Outside of the family unit, your own friends, and their children or friends of your kids from their prior school can all be an active part of their life keeping them busy and active with others outside your immediate family unit.
Library groups. Going to the library for homeschool groups or activities is a great way to stay social and keep education going outside the home. Most public libraries offer not just homeschool activities, but other kids activities throughout the year. Arts and crafts, story time, or things like Lego clubs or Video Game clubs can all be a great place for your kids and you to meet new people and make friends. This is also a great budget-friendly way to keep kids socialized.
Sports teams. Playing sports isn’t something that can only happen within the public school systems. While many public schools allow homeschoolers to join their teams, there are also great teams outside that are perfect for your kids to participate with during the seasons. Upward is a religious group that provides soccer, basketball, softball, and cheerleading programs in many communities. The Boys & Girls Club of America is another excellent choice that provide multiple sports opportunities as well as clubs they can join.
Music and drama groups. For more artistic children, local music and drama groups are a great way to keep kids socialized while homeschooling. There are often groups that teach lessons or join together to put on productions year round. If your child has a natural talent in either of these fields, a local children’s theater group may be a great place for them to make friends and socialize.
Dance or gymnastics. Dance and gymnastics are both part of sports, but they are typically outside the traditional sport spectrum since they don’t necessarily have teams for competition. You can locate places to participate on a fun level, as well as a competitive level for both dance and gymnastics. These fun and physical activities are a great choice for kids to gain social skills and be a part of a group of similar children.
Homeschool groups. This is one of the most popular ways for homeschooled kids to stay socialized. A local homeschool group may provide you with fun field trips, play dates, or even educational co-ops where your children can learn from different classes on arts, music, or similar subjects you may not enjoy teaching at home. There are often multiple options in your area to choose from, and participating in more than one group is a common practice that will benefit both you and your child.
Religious organizations. Attending church is a great place to keep kids socialized with like minded individuals. Sharing your faith and experiences with others can be a great place for them to learn social skills, and make lifelong friends. Most churches and religious organizations offer kids classes, groups, and even missions trips on occasion that can be highly beneficial to your kids development. Even if your family is not religious, you may consider looking into the children and youth programs offered by local churches.
Community involvement. Volunteering in your local community is an excellent way to socialize as a homeschooler. Whether you participate in local cleanups, volunteer at a soup kitchen, or help out at a local children shelter or similar location volunteer work and community involvement is a great way to step up to help and socialize. You may even consider having your kids participate in local political situations or government programs to help learn more about the world around them and how it operates. Many state legislatures hire interns during the summer to help with errands and office work. This would be a great choice for a teen interested in a future in politics or community support.
Clubs for specific skills. If your children exhibit interests in specific skills or ideas, you may want to research clubs in your area that cater to those ideas. Common things are video games, Lego’s, Minecraft, book clubs, robotics clubs, programming clubs, and even simple games clubs. These types of programs may not always be educational, but they are a great place for your children to meet new people and make friends. Knowing how to keep kids socialized while homeschooling isn’t always about education, but is abut exploring the world around them and keeping them involved in learning about other people.
As you explore homeschooling for your family, don’t let socialization become a concern. As you can see, there are numerous ways to keep your children active and social without being in a traditional classroom each day. Social skills start at home and evolve as your children grow and spend time around other people. This is just a small example of ways you can impact your child with great ways to socialize and stay active with other kids and friends outside your home.