The Social Issue

Possibly the biggest stereotype about homeschoolers is that they’re socially awkward. Because if you’re ‘home’ schooled, that means that you spend the majority of your time at home with little to no social interaction with the outside world. That, or you have a small selection of friends who also happen to be homeschoolers. Now this isn’t true for many, but for some, it’s better left unsaid.

As a homeschooler, it is important to expand your social boundaries and possibly the best way to do this is to get involved in your community. It helps prepare you for the workplace, for college, and the real world as a whole. If there was any reason for your parents to homeschool you, it was for the sole purpose of sheltering you from the toxic waste of society that consequently gets dumped into our public institutions. Not saying that your parents are entirely wrong, but what ends up happening is that your primary abode becomes the underside of a rock. To help solve this issue, I’m going to outline some venues that you can take to venture outside of your domain.

1.       Team Sports

If you enjoy playing sports, this is something you really should look into. You don’t necessarily have to go to the YMCA to play sports, but you could if you want to. Though if you search around online or other recreational centers in your area, you can find postings looking for people to participate on their team. If you’re really good, high schools have been known to recruit players outside of their pool of students, so if can make it on the team, all kinds of possibilities can open up from there.

2.       Community Service

If you’re applying for a job, it’s vital that you have some volunteer experience under your belt, especially since you’re a homeschooler. It assures employers that you have the skills necessary to do your job, such as being able to work as a team and work diligently. You can find postings in many public facilities (let’s not try the restrooms, though) or online. You could try the YMCA, but only if you really have to. Find something that you think you might enjoy. If it turns out that the one you pick isn’t your kind of thing, try something else. Pick up two or three and if it begins to affect your studying, then drop the one you like the least.

3.       Clubs

While many are directed towards hobbies, clubs are generally aimed towards topics of interests that people would want to improve upon. These can tie into the venues I’ve mentioned above, but are not limited to them. For instance, I enjoy writing, so I may want to join a writer’s club to be with people who have the same aspirations as I do, and work together towards improving our writing skills. An organization called Toastmasters is a club that is geared towards improving people’s speech skills. There are even academic clubs that are aimed towards helping people with certain topics such as algebra, chemistry, and physics as well as clubs that deal with studying as a whole.

If this is something you are new to, or simply not used to it, don’t worry. Don’t be afraid of getting your feet wet and just dive in. To learn how to deal with the variety of personality types that are out there (and we’re talking about people here, and people are hard to deal with), it takes time and some well-placed, self-depreciating humor.

“So why are you pulling on the door that says “Please use other door”?”

“Because I’m a homeschooler and I don’t know how to read!” 😛

Now with all joking aside, being a homeschooler is a major benefit because unlike publicschoolers, you have more freedom to get involved in the community. Colleges and employers can look at you more seriously because it shows them that you’ve pursued something that you love to do. So with that put into practice, the social issue no longer becomes an issue.