Several mothers of middle schooled homeschooled children whom I have spoken to recently (with children ranging from almost 13 to 14 and a half), have said that their children have asked for either classes with a peer group or expressed an interest in someday attending school. My own older daughter recently told me she would like a Latin class in a group of peers, which I thought was interesting timing on the heels of some of the conversation between myself and other parents.
This question has also given many of us as parents a small wondering pause. Many of the parents who have planned to homeschool through high school are wondering if the pull towards peers is going to become stronger and stronger and will our teens be happy homeschooling high school or will they want to do something different? And then there is always that delicate balance of how much does a child get to decide for themselves what course their education is going to take during the teen years? Much like many children do not have a choice whether or not to attend school, many homeschoolers feel a traditional academic school is not a good fit for their family, even in high school. These are the delicate issues that must be grappled with.
And I think this wanting to be in a peer group for classes and learning also points to a different piece – being with peers socially. My daughter told me the other day that she loves homeschooling and wouldn’t change a thing about it, but she does wish she could see her friends more during the week.
Because there is a big change that happens in middle school homeschooling, I think. Continue reading