When I was 12 years old our church got a new pastor who had seven children. I had never met a family with that many kids, but something else about them was even more intriguing than the number of people in the family. This family was home schooled. (If this story sounds familiar, you probably read about it in a previous post.
My parents and many others showed concern that this family was not getting “socialized” like public schooled kids so naturally I wondered too. I became best friends with the two oldest girls and went to their house regularly (like once or twice a week minimum). It didn’t take long for me to totally forget the question of socialization. I had more fun at their house than anywhere, including public school.
These seven kids, including the little ones, had great manners among other children and adults. They knew when to be quiet and when to speak up (for the most part – they were still kids). They had social opportunities when they visited friends’ families and when friends visited theirs and also when they were at church.
Interestingly, I did not become “socialized” until after my first year in college. The change in me was due to a summer mission trip to California. On that trip, I was forced to speak to people I did not know and to work with partners that I had only known a week. I guess you could say I learned to swim by being tossed into the water.
By comparison, the oldest child in the new pastoring family at the age of twelve loved (and still does) talking to people of all ages. He was able to talk to an adult and almost seem like one himself, yet he could also keep the attention of a two year old for amazing amounts of time. He was able to handle himself in a social situation without a problem. His 10 year old sister had the same capability.
Of course, I ended up marrying that twelve year old boy, and we continued the family tradition by home schooling our children.
Believe it or not, this was just my introduction. I have a lot more to say on this topic, but it is bed time, and this is a good stopping place. Stay tuned on Saturday for more.