Is homeschooling an only child an issue?
When I saw Carlie’s post on Facebook that she was looking for contributors from a homeschooling an only child perspective, I thought, “Hey! That’s me!” I eagerly sent her an e-mail because I love this blog, but I didn’t expect to be chosen. When I did receive an offer to join the Managing Your Blessings team, I began thinking about what I could write that is unique to homeschooling an only child. Honestly, I hadn’t given the topic much thought.
I have thought about other only child issues such as, “How am I going to get anything done today? She is so bored without someone to play with!” or “She’s already 5, if we don’t have another baby soon she’ll be so much older that they won’t have a close relationship.” I never considered that having only one child would be a homeschool issue. If anything, I considered it a plus! C gets to have all of my school time attention, there are no distractions and I only have one child to plan for.
I was so surprised when I sat down and typed, “homeschooling an only child” into Google. So many people were questioning whether they should even homeschool if they have only one child. Apparently, homeschooling an only child takes the “homeschool kids’ socialization” issue to a whole new level.
While reading through various forums and posts I found, I actually started to question if my daughter’s reservations in public situations were my fault because I chose to homeschool. She really isn’t comfortable staying with anyone other than select family members, even for a short amount of time. She has
no interest refuses to go to Sunday school. I had to stay with her for the first few co-op classes because she was scared to stay without me. For a moment, I felt like maybe I was wrong and that she needed the social interaction school provides. (I now realize the folly in that thought.)
I had to stop and remind myself that C is an amazing little girl. She is so funny and bright! Thanks to our choice to homeschool she is able to work at a much higher level than most Kindergarten kids. She reads at a second grade level, she knows more about animals than I do and she is full of love.
She isn’t on a path to become a socially awkward stereotype either. She enjoys playing with kids her age once she has gotten comfortable. She laughs uncontrollably when she finds something funny and she loves to tell jokes! Her favorite:
Do you best you can by your family
In this day and age, I’m not so sure it’s a big deal that she isn’t comfortable staying with just anyone, even if it is people we know. While I do think she would enjoy Sunday school, I am so blessed when she picks up on things from a sermon at church. A few weeks ago our pastor was preaching from the story of Joseph. It was a wonderful message about how God is consistent. When we got home C wanted to watch Joseph the movie Joseph King of Dreams. She had been listening during church and wanted to be reminded of how God moved in Joseph’s life.
Is socialization a bigger issue for those of us that homeschool one child? It probably is. I plan on sharing ideas on how to find classes or groups to join to help with that. However, I don’t think this potential con comes close to outweighing all of the wonderful pros of homeschooling!
If you are homeschooling, or thinking of homeschooling an only child, I hope you are encouraged today. You are doing the best you can by your family and I have so much respect for that! If you are struggling with doubt or frustration with your homeschool, I highly suggest the book Joy in the Journey by Lori Hatcher. (Affiliate link) Lori includes a devotion for each week of the school year. It has been so encouraging for me!
I would love to help you in this journey! Please leave a comment letting me know the problems you face or concerns you have about homeschooling an only child. I will try to address them in future posts. I am honored to be a part of the Managing Your Blessings team and I look forward to interacting with you here as well as at my blog, Joy Focused Learning.