Let’s start with the first thing everyone ask about when you tell them you’ve decided to homeschool…socialization!
I’ll admit I used this idea as an excuse in the early days of my husband and I deciding to homeschool. As someone who attended public school, I couldn’t fathom how my children could make lasting friendships without going to school and having classmates. How were my
kids going to know how to act around others and their peers if they’re not in a classroom setting?
Luckily, my daughter is my oldest child and she is quite the social butterfly. She makes friends wherever she goes. She loves to talk and ask questions. Small talk is her jam. And I have a feeling this would be who she is, homeschooled or not.
My middle child, my oldest son, is shy. he gets a little overwhelmed in crowds of new people and isn’t much of a talker when he is out of his comfort zone. I also have a feeling that’s who he would be, homeschooled or not.
So, if you’re worried about homeschooling making your child a certain type of person, I don’t think you have anything to worry about there. People are who they are. We’re all unique. And that’s good!
Now, that we have that squared away, let’s talk about all of the opportunities there are for homeschool kids in the Birmingham Area to socialize!
Cover Schools, like mine Faith Community Christian School offers parties, play dates, and field trips. Even Moms Night out so the moms get some socializing in too! There are many good cover schools in our area. They all do not offer the same things, so be sure to pick one that offers what you need.
Co-ops are different than cover schools. A Co-Op can offer classes for your child that would give them the experience of a classroom setting and help fill in any gaps that you think they may have in classes you’ve taught at home. For instance, when my children get older and need more complex Science and Math, a co-op is going to be a life saver! And it will have the added bonus of socialization. Some co-ops offer class parties, and even field trips. There are also many available in our area. For instance, SCOPE is one that I have heard good things about.
There are some curriculums that require at least one day of the week to be group classes. I have used Classical Conversations in the past and the group/class day was always my daughter’s favorite day. There are multiple CC groups in the Birmingham Area.
Some area activities offer special days and rates just for homeschoolers, such as High Point Climbing. Those days are always fun and a good opportunity to meet other homeschoolers in the area. High Point Climbing’s next Home School day is March 7th, from 8AM until 3PM.
The Birmingham Homeschoolers Community is a great resource for park days, play dates, field trips and Moms nights out. They offer events just for teens, enrichment classes and camps as well. The moms who run this community have really made a wonderful resource for homeschoolers in Birmingham.
Along with all of these exclusively homeschooler opportunities, there are still others ways to make sure your children are socializing. Recreational Sports have been a great resource for our family. My sons have found a love of soccer and it was wonderful seeing them work with their team and coaches. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, still offer valuable life skills and lessons. Along with The American Heritage Girls.
And lets not forget just scheduling a good old fashion play date at the park! It seems the simplest of activities are still my children’s favorite way to socialize.
Abby is a Writer, Wife and Homeschooling Mama to 3. She lives in Springville, AL with her Family.