Homeschooling Memoirs | Part 4(unfinished draft)

One of the most common and understandable misconceptions about homeschoolers is that they are more likely to be inadequately socialized. Prima facie, this notion seems correct (or, at least plausible) since the average homeschooler probably participates in fewer social interactions than his public school counterparts. However, the important question in this respect isn’t quantitative but qualitative. That is, one can have a myriad of social interactions ; but, who do such interactions involve? The structure of public schools almost completely ensures that children will only associate with those who are either exactly or around the same age as them. This impedes older members of communities, who often possess greater wisdom, experience, and character from exercising much influence over them. And, while many teachers are the exception to this rule, whatever they have to offer quickly becomes thin gruel when introduced in the context of classrooms with upwards of thirty children. Moreover, in public schools, there is a lack of diversity of social situations from which children can learn. Or, put differently, situations continually arise which involve the same people, at the same place, doing mostly the same things. Few arrangements could be more developmentally stagnating.


  1. Very true, Dylan – and this is definitely something that is visible in the interactions of homeschoolers versus the interactions of public schoolers. Homeschooling tends to draw children and youth out of their comfort zone, and in new situations and meeting new people, I have seen homeschoolers well equipped by the uniqueness and hands-on approach in education, to be confident because of their past successes in challenging themselves. I agree that the quality of interactions is more important than the quantity, especially as it relates to intentional mentorship, which I have found is much more prevalent in homeschooling, family-centered circles, and a definite source of confidence and growth. I’ve never realized or articulated these things before, so I appreciate your sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Makayla. I’m glad you found my work illuminating. Yes, age segregation and lack of exposure to most real-world situations (owing to almost perpetual confinement on campus) seems to explain partly why public school students are underperforming in juxtaposition to their homeschooled peers.

      Then again, these are just anecdotal observations. Ideally, I would like more research conducted on these questions.


  2. I knew a couple of people who were homeschooled growing up; they seemed well adjusted.

    Then I found out that there are social groups for kids being home schooled. As the expression goes there are many ways to skin a cat. Who is to say that public schools present the best dynamics for socialization? I would be willing to surmise that public schools do not. There is a lot of bullying, drugs, and other distractions ( I attended public schools K-12.

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    1. Great observations!

      I remember John Gatto used to stress the distinction between “schooling” and “education.” The former consists mostly of the rote memorization of disconnected facts for testing purposes while the latter concerns character development, learning from real-world experiences (social in nature or otherwise), and the internalization of wisdom.


    2. Also, I personally know many homeschoolers that are involved in co-ops. These are usually arranged by like-minded parents living within somewhat close proximity of each other. Together, for their children, they plan things like regular group outings and interactive study sessions.

      Liked by 1 person

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