Thursday, August 02, 2007


(see picture above: socialization!)

Okay, as a homeschooling family, we get pretty tired of the "what about socialization?" question. Over and over I have heard it and so have many of my friends who choose to homeschool. In the book, "When You Rise Up"(metioned in an earlier blog post), R.C. Sproul, Jr. comes up with a great reply for this question. I only hope I remember it the next time someone brings it up.

He mentions that the Bible doesn't tell us how children are to be socialized, and-even further- God never commands that our children even be "socialized!" (and the Bible itself says that it equips us for every good work and that we are to raise our children in the admonition of the Lord) He will usually question the other person as to what they mean by socialization. He then guides the conversation by saying, "..Now, when you speak of socialization, you're talking about my child's ability to get along with others who are different. Is that it?" Usually he gets an affirmative response, and then goes on to list all the ways his children daily interact with everyone from adults to their special-needs sister, to "socializing" with the kids at church, to folks, etc...

"But that isn't really what people mean by socialization. What they want for my daughter Darby is to be hip to all the things other ten-year old girls are concerned about, like fashion labels, television shows, pop singers, and other essentials to the good life....But I have none of that concern. I raise my daughter, her sisters, and her brother to be free. Their identity is in Christ, not in pop culture...Oh, but how will she ever meet people where they are? How will she ever be able to relate to the world around her, if she doesn't know what's up with Harry Potter? And if she doesn't know that, how can she possibly win the lost? This whole drowning-ourselves-in-pop-culture-sludge argument should be wearing thin by now. What exactly do your children need to know in order to win the lost besides the Bible...?...All our children need to know about the lost is that they are lost. When they, in their lostness, yammer on and on about the latest boy band, all they need to know is that the latest boy band is not the answer." (pp. 136)

When I looked up the word "socialize" in the Webster's Dictionary, it says "to make friendly or sociable, to take part in social activities." Yes, my children take part in social activities. Yes, my children are friendly. And, they don't need a roomful of kids only their own age to find someone to socialize with. They have so much fun with our summer staff-who are college age. I've even had people tell me that they are surprised how much friendlier and outgoing my kids are than some kids who are in school. My oldest is more shy, but that is just who she is, and she would be that way in school or at home. No amount of "socialization" can change their God-given personalities. That's what makes them unique.

"And these words I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way and when you lie down, and when you rise..." Deuteronomy 6:6-7)

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