Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Homeschooling- Q & A Part 2 continued

I received this question in the comments, so I added the answer to piggy-back the socialization question

I'm wondering about the friendships your children will have. Will you only allow them to "hang out" with other kids who are homeschooled? What about other kids in your neighborhood who may attend public schools? Would you try to discourage them from having more than a casual relationship with those children?

Friendships for our children is a topic that we have thought alot about. We have many different types of people in our house (public schooled, homeschooled, Christian and not), it is the ministry we feel the Lord has lead us to, but we do have to protect our children first and foremost. Our children spend time with other children that are very different than them, but it is always under our supervision. Also, I don't necessarily "trust" homeschooled kids to be perfect and to be all that different than any other kids. All are depraved and born into sin, so as a mom, I feel it is my job to keep an eye and ear on them at all times.

We don't live anecdotally, but we know of a family whose daughter was molested, in the next room that they were sitting in, at a Christian, homeschooling family's house, by a teenage son. These are our little ones, so I think we need to take the utmost care in protecting them from evil.

We will try to guide our children's choices for friends toward other children who display a strong sense of character and morality. At their current ages of 4, 2 and baby, I have to make those decision for them. Usually we spend time with my friends that have kids the same age. As they get older, more serious discussions and guiding will have to take place.

My kids play outside with neighbor kids under my supervision, but often times we have to come inside because the other kids aren't being or talking very nicely (or vice versa, like I said, my kids are 4, 2 and baby, are far from perfect and learning how to be a good friend!) The same thing happens at the park. Sometimes we stay and play for a long time, or sometimes we have to go home because of the kids there. Bennett picks up on this very easily and knows to leave a bad situation.

Every family has a comfort level and will have a different set of rules. We feel that we can't influence our children if we aren't with them, guiding them until the time comes that they are displaying a character ruled by wisdom instead of the foolishness of a child.