Weird Homeschooled Kid? You Bet! by Apryl

I have one of those kids. You know…the weird homeschooled kid. Technically she’s almost an adult now, but she is definitely weird.

She collects weird hats, is subject to fits of singing, dresses like she was born in the wrong decade, quotes obscure books, and is overly fond of swords. She has never fit into any box that anyone has ever tried to put her in.

But rather than being caused by homeschooling, her quirky personality has been allowed to flourish into something beautiful because of homeschooling.

 

She started out in the public school system. I sent my bright, bubbly, happy-go-lucky little girl off to kindergarten at the local elementary school. She stayed there until the 6th grade. School didn’t change her quirkiness, but it did begin to change her happiness. She lost some of that shine.

For various reasons, we pulled the kids out of public school when Kelsie hit middle school. After a bit of a bumpy start because she didn’t want to leave school, she began to grow comfortable in her own skin.

Her interests led her to places where her talents were able to shine. She discovered a love for volunteering and has been able to work at a food bank, a raptor rescue center, a vet’s office, summer camp, and the library. She’s sung in choirs, taken improv classes, and has delved into Latin.

She discovered she has a love of and talent for writing. For her English instruction one year, she learned the ins and outs of writing a novel and was even able to attend a writers’ workshop taught by one of her favorite authors.

 

Being homeschooled has allowed her to pursue things like fencing and Latin. She’s been able to spend time with people of all ages and found that she has a big heart for the older generation. She has been able to use her eclectic hats to spark conversations with total strangers and garner coveted smiles from little kids.

Her complete eschewing of social norms has given her the compassion to befriend people who have no friends; to give a listening ear and much needed hugs. Not only that, it is almost as if her loving spirit rubs off on those around her, and those lonely people become part of her circle, making even more friends.

As her parents, we’ve tried to help her find her way. We didn’t try to shape her to fit the world. We’ve let her world take shape around her. We don’t shelter her from the ugly and the pain in the world; rather we try to help her stand strong and give her a safe place to land. And when she falls, we help her dust off and try again.

No, my weird homeschooler does not fit in with the typical teenage crowd. They don’t always know how to take her. But she knows how to take on the world.

 

Apryapryll–Born and raised in Tennessee, Apryl is a southern girl at heart.  She lives out in the country with her husband and her three daughters. She is an artist, photographer and a homeschooler.  After having an unfulfilling public school education herself, and struggling to find peace with the education her girls were receiving in the public school system, she made the choice to homeschool.  When they began their homeschool journey, the girls were in the third and sixth grades.  Now she is happily coaching three teenaged daughters through their high school years.  You can visit her blog at Following Him Home

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