Socializing Students While Schooling Online

Here's another fascinating entry from a parent about the question they hear most often - 

Those of us with students in an online school know that we often field questions about our choice to school online.  And the questions I hear most often are about socialization.  People just don’t understand how it can work.  How do you socialize your student if they are schooling at home?  Where do they get the chance to make friends and new experiences?  Do they just sit in front of a computer by themselves for six hours every day?  What about sports?

I don’t know about you, but the online schools we’ve been involved with offer activities.  Many activities.  Physical activities, online activities…you name it, it’s most likely offered.  From beginning of the year picnics, local meet and greets at the park, to school gatherings at zoos, Cosi and other kid-friendly venues in larger cities.  These school-wide and local activities have been a great way to meet teachers face to face, meet others in our area who do what we do, share experiences, and meet students we “see” in our online classroom lessons. 

Many schools also offer an array of clubs and activities: chess, robotics, Lego, student government, poetry, music, etc.  Kids who join these not only get the experience of learning the activity, but also gain friendships with others involved.

Outside of school, options are endless as well.  Our library and community center have activities planned for kids of all ages.  Homeschooling groups are easy to find in most areas and their contact information can often be found online.   If finances are an issue, many opportunities are available free of charge or at a low cost to the family.

And let’s not forget about the big excitement for the 2014-15 school year: open participation in extracurricular activities at local public schools.  This is something many of us have looked forward to for our students for quite some time. 

Are your e-schoolers participating in public school activities? Do you/they want to but you don’t know where to start or are you hitting roadblocks?  We’d love to hear from you…  How are your online students getting some socialization in?  What are they doing?  How many hours per week do you spend working with extracurricular activities? Leave comments below or on our Facebook.