This post was written by Laura Johnson
When I decided to homeschool my children, one of the main things I was worried about was how were my children going to make friends? Not necessarily the whole “socialization” debate that is often discussed when referring to children who are homeschooled, but more or less, what types of activities would be available to them since they didn’t attend a local school. While I was a bit worried in the beginning, talking with a group of moms who homeschooled in the area, I found out there was really a lot they could do:
Music is a great pastime for children. It is not only fun to play, sing, or listen to, but it can help to improve their ability to learn. Finding an instructor for voice lessons, or a musician to teach the kids how to play an instrument, is as simple as searching online for music teachers in the area. There are instructors that teach one on one classes as well as those who teach small groups, this way you can find a class that best suits the needs and interests of your child.
Both boy and girl scouts are open to children who are homeschooled. While some are inclusive to a school district, you can do a bit of digging to find ones that open the doors to all students. You can find a local scout office near you by checking out their respective websites.
There are a lot of community centers that offer youth sports teams that are open to the public. They allow children within the neighborhood to participate in sporting events. You’ll need to check with your local community center to find out which sports teams are available and what the age requirements are.
Do you have a drama queen in the house? If so they might enjoy participating in performance arts. There are a lot of towns that offer drama programs. Most are open to the general public. Check with nearby theaters, colleges, and community centers for possible programs and to determine enrollment is and what the requirements are for your area.
If your children love the water, then why not allow them to take a swimming class? Many community gyms have programs for kids – especially during the summer. Your children can learn how to swim while also having fun with other children from the community. Since these classes are popular during the summer, they may fill up quick so be sure to register asap.
Believe it or not, there are a lot of extracurricular activities your children can participate in at the local library. They often have things like book clubs, computer classes, arts and crafts, and even science and math programs that your children can take advantage of. You’ll need to check the website of your local library to get a calendar of events.
These are just a few of the possible extracurricular activities for children who are being homeschooled. If you find that it’s difficult to locate programs in the town where you live, try searching by state as larger locations will have more options available. Of course, before signing your kids up, be sure to have a talk with them to find out what their interests are so that you can place them in a program that they’ll actually enjoy.