I’ve posted a time or two about questions that homeschool parents get asked. Recently my daughter, Megan, asked her homeschooled friends to tell her what kind of questions they get asked by kids who aren’t homeschooled.
I asked if I could share her questions and some answers on my blog.
So here are the questions with legitimate answers and maybe a little humor, but no snark. I elaborated a bit on Megan’s answers, but she read over them with me to check them for accuracy – so they aren’t homeschool mom answers. They’re homeschooled kid answers.
1. So, like, do you have any friends?
Yes, we have friends. Some of us have a lot of friends. Some of us prefer just a few close friends.
2. How do you make friends?
The same way you do, just not at the same place. We make friends at church, homeschool groups, on our sports teams, etc.
3. Do you have homework?
It depends on how you look at it – it’s either all homework because it’s all done at home or we never have homework because we do all our schoolwork and we’re finished. Some homeschooled kids do go to co-op or other classes outside their home and they may have homework from there.
4. Do you stay in your PJs all day?
Some of us do. Some kids like to get up and get dressed because it helps them wake up and feel ready for the day. Some of us hang out in sweats or yoga pants and t-shirts.
5. Do you wish you were in school and were normal?
Being normal is overrated. Most of us are normal. Some of us wouldn’t be normal, no matter where we go to school. Some homeschooled kids probably wish they went to public school, but I don’t. I like being homeschooled.
6. Why do you homeschool? (Alternately: Why don’t you go to school like normal kids?)
For most of us, it was a decision our parents made when we were young and it’s what we’ve always done. Some of us homeschool due to bullying situations at school or because public school wasn’t a good fit academically.
7. How do you meet guys/girls to date?
The same way you do, but definitely not the same place because – ewww – that would be gross since the people at our school are our siblings. It might help us that we don’t meet as many people so that we don’t get in a bunch of relationships that we don’t need to be in.
8. Are your parents your best friends?
Um, no. We love our parents, but they aren’t our best friends.
9. Does being homeschooled make you feel socially awkward?
Not for most of us. Some of us are awkward, but so are some public school kids. Being homeschooled doesn’t make you awkward; that’s just your personality.
10. Do you only listen to Christian music?
Some of us do. Others listen to all kinds of music. We have as much variety in our music as any other kids do.
11. Do you go outside?
What is outside? Is it as pretty as they say? Just kidding! Of course, we go outside. One of the great things about being homeschooled is that on pretty days, we can take our work outside and do it there if we want to.
12. How will you get your learner’s permit?
The same way anyone else gets theirs.
My note: Really, we’ve done it twice and it was even easier the second time due to changes in Georgia law, but not difficult either time. There are online courses or private driving schools to meet the driver’s education course requirements.
13. Do you get to sleep all day and stay up all night?
Some of us have unusual schedules. Some of us have normal schedules. One of the best things about homeschooling is being able to work when we’re most alert. For some of us that is late at night. For others, it’s early in the morning.
My note: My kids do stay up pretty late. Megan has just discovered the benefits of working at night – it’s quiet and there are fewer distractions. Brianna was the same way as a teen.
13. Don’t you want to go to college?
Some of us do and will. Homeschoolers can attend college just like anyone else. Our parents or what’s called an umbrella school keep track of our transcripts. We can sign up to take the ACT or SAT at a testing facility (usually a public school) and our test scores are sent to the colleges to which we’re applying or we may take admissions tests through the college we’ll be attending.
Some of us want to do things that don’t require a college degree, so we’ll take a different path to reach our goals.
14. Do you a prom?
What’s a prom? Yeah, I’m kidding. Our local homeschool group holds prom for homeschoolers every year.
15. Do you get breaks?
Yes, we get breaks. Some homeschool families school year-round and take breaks when they need them. Others follow the public school year. Our family takes a six-week summer break and a six-week Christmas break. During our school year, we do school for six weeks and take a week off. This year, we took spring break at the same time the public schools did.
16. Are you super-smart?
Nope. It’s just like public or private school. Some kids are super-smart. Others have to work hard to make good grades. Most of us are pretty average students.
17. What’s recess like?
We don’t really have recess. We have breaks during the day. Some families take scheduled breaks; others take breaks as they need them. We take a long lunch break and during that time we may work on our hobbies (playing music, painting, or writing), watch TV, play video games, go outside and play – whatever.
18. Do you own a TV or have electricity?
No, we live in one of those log cabins like you see on Little House on the Prairie.
Yes, I’m kidding. Some homeschool families don’t have a TV, but most of the ones we know do. We watch the same kind of shows you watch. We have Internet access and cell phones. We have Facebook accounts and Instagram accounts – well, our family does anyway. I know some parents who don’t let their kids on social media yet.
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have electricity.
19. Do your parents let you talk to other people?
Only under direct supervision. Yeah, that’s a joke, too. Of course, we talk to other people. We text, we chat on Facebook, we Skype our friends, and we hang out with them in person – maybe not every day, but often.
20. Wait…you homeschool? (Alternately: You’re a homeschooler? But you seem so normal.)
See? I told you that we’re a lot like you. If we didn’t seem like socially awkward weirdos before you knew we were homeschooled, why should that change? We have more in common with public and private schooled kids than we have differences. The biggest difference is just where we go to school.
What questions have your kids – or you, if you’re the homeschooled kid – been asked about homeschooling?