Guess What? Homeschooled Kids Really ARE Weird…and Here’s Why…

Maybe there's some truth to that old homeschooling myth...

As a child, being homeschooled carries with it a certain stigma. Watch your teenager mention to a few new acquaintances that they’re homeschooled and behold their new “friends” start to snicker.

After all, homeschoolers are weird, right?

I’ll admit, I used to get irritated by hearing this stereotype over and over again, but I’ve come to believe that there just may be some truth to it

Let’s think about this a bit. Although a couple million kids are currently being homeschooled in the United States, the vast majority of students go to public school.

At public school, these kids are told:

  • what to wear, who to date, and how to act by their peers
  • to sit down, be quiet, pay attention, raise their hands, and do as they’re told by their teachers
  • how what to think about morals, society, politics, family, and history by their school district
  • what subjects are worthwhile learning about by the government
  • and in many cases, what to wear as part of a district wide dress code

These students are literally crushed into conformity.

Now let’s compare this to the average homeschooler.

I’m going to admit right away that there are some pretty strict homeschooling parents out there who really do control a lot of what their children do, but, by and large, homeschooled children have the freedom to be themselves.

An interesting concept, right?

Untainted by what other people feel they should be doing, homeschool students are able to dress as they please and pass the time doing whatever activities they please because they are free from the ridicule that accompanies the school setting. They have the liberty to express themselves for who they really are and not who society thinks they should be.

Do you remember the “weird kids” when you were in school? You know, the ones with the purple hair, or the mohawks, or the ones who seemed to carry their oboes everywhere with them? The ones who got made fun of?

As a teenager, I thought these kids were more than a little goofy. I mean, really. Didn’t they know how to be cool?? Why did they try so hard to be different??

As an adult, I look back on these students and recognize them as the strongest kids in the school. They didn’t care what people thought of them. They were intent on living their lives so they could be true to themselves, despite the fact that this may have cost them lots of popularity points and caused them to be teased more than anyone should ever have to endure. They might have been “weird” by society’s standards, but their individuality was strong enough to shine through.

That’s the light that I see in homeschooled kids. Being protected from the pressures of the “what will people think” mentality has enabled these children to be who they are. They are the children who wear their elephant costumes to the grocery store with pride. The teenagers who have no qualms about staging a swordfight on the front lawn. The preteen girls who would much rather dig for worms or play dolls than worry about makeup or boys. The kids who will happily embrace the label of “weird” because they have no interest in conforming to everyone else’s standards.

So let them call your kids weird. If you look at the alternative, that can only be a good thing.

 

 

 

 

Author: Shelly Sangrey

I'm Shelly, a Christ-following, homeschooling Mom of eleven children ( okay, not ALL children. My oldest is 23.) I met my husband right after graduation, and we've been together ever since. Though my life can be hectic at times... okay, ALL the time, I wouldn't change it for anything.

34 thoughts on “Guess What? Homeschooled Kids Really ARE Weird…and Here’s Why…”

  1. One of the best defenses I got was actually from my best friend. She was one of those “weird” public schoolers – a strong one. 🙂 More than once I recall kids looking at us like we weren’t quite right, or calling us weird or freaky to our faces. Every time this happened she would stick out her chin and with a glint in her eye she would say “why thank you!” Followed by a cheeky grin. The first time this happened I was stunned. But after a while, I realized it was the best response you could have. Often our good attitudes changed peoples opinions of us. More importantly, it changed our attitude towards them. We didn’t worry or get upset when they said things about us & I learned to give people the benefit of the doubt. I mean, they looked miserable while we were having the most fun two girls could possibly have!
    I like this post, and I think it’s good to embrace the weirdness.
    Also, would any of your homeschoolers happen to stage sword fights? Because if so, that is awesome. 😀 Just know that it doesn’t end with graduation!

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Those work too! 🙂 When I first met my fiancé (we were 15 at the time) he showed me how to make some really cool swords out of pvc pipe, pool noodles & duct tape. I love hearing other kids preferred items for sword play. It seems to be quite popular amongst our fellow homeschoolers.

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  2. I don’t want to use the word “weird”, but I can “spot” homeschoolers. As someone that was homeschooled before it was mainstream, I can remember being able to recognize other homeschoolers without knowing them. As an adult now, I still occassionally “spot” one and point them out to my significant other. He went to public school. I usually whisper, I bet them are homeschooled. My mom and sister spot them too. Of course, we mean it in the best way, but it’s a little funny that we do it. Much harder to do now that it’s mainstream, but there is always the stereotype. 🙂 Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly right!! They aren’t just the sheeple following along. They are the real leaders! Remember everyone has an opinion just like everyone has a an a hole!

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  3. There are certainly differences between the differently schooled kids… I also notice more of a love of learning instead of just getting things done (although homeschooled kids can have that attitude too… especially about a not so favorite subject!) But I love how my kids will want to know something and will just research it for themselves. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Great Post! Thats one of the things I love about homeschooling my kids. I love that they are just themselves. Its ok if they like things that might be “too young” for them. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The one homeschooled girl I’ve ever met was really weird. She never stopped talking, even when normal social cues would let a normal person know it was time to shut up. My kid goes to public school but still dresses the way he/she wants and does the things he/she wants to do. I think it’s close-minded to say that public school kids are forced to be anything. I will say that once you grow up, the real world is a lot like school so you’d better learn how to play ball.

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    1. Hmmm…I went to school with a girl the other kids dubbed “Tina Talker Box” because of her incessant talking, so I doubt the girl you’re referring to turned out that way simply because she was homeschooled. I actually think it’s a bit close-minded to base your characterization of all homeschoolers on an encounter with one person. Having gone through the public education system myself, not to mention that several of my children spent years in public school, I’ve been able to base my observations on my encounters with hundreds, if not thousands, of students. If your child still expresses individuality, that’s awesome. In my experience, however, this is not the case most of the time. I’m also curious how the real world is like school when the real world does not take place inside of four walls or textbooks or age-segregated classrooms.

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    1. I’m so sorry you had a bad time being homeschooled. I’d be interested to hear what you didn’t like about it. And thank you for your honesty. I really appreciate it. I enjoyed the link, as well.

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  6. As someone who has attended public school for all my life, and has interacted with my fair share of home-schooled kids– this article about public schools crushing children into conformity is ridiculous. Public school allows for children to interact with peers and have relationships that aren’t affected by familial ties. If anything, I think that being home-schooled squanders the chance to develop their own personality without being influenced by family. I had a friend in elementary school whose mother had an outfit picked for every day of the week- and it was the same outfit, every consecutive day On wednesday she wore a brown cardigan, beige shirt, and blue skirt. On thursday she wore a light green shirt and beige pants. In eighth grade a new student arrived in class, and he was sat next to me. And I’m not going to sugarcoat it, middle schoolers and high schoolers alike cuss, but mostly use a lot of slang. After speaking with him for a couple minutes for class started, it dawned on me that this kid couldn’t talk like I did- he didn’t understand a good portion of the words I was saying, and he even started to emulate the way I spoke to my other friends. It was clear this kid had limited experience with interacting with people his own age. For the rest of the year he struggled to make friends and interact with other students. It was really sad, and to see so many people advocate for the active eradication of a child’s personality is kinda gross. Besides, what makes parents more qualified to teach children other than certified teachers?

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    1. You’re basing your conclusions of homeschoolers on two or three people. I had a boy in my AP English class who used to drool on his papers and had a hard time socializing with others. This was in a public school. He was public schooled his entire life. There are socially awkward kids to be found everywhere. Also, homeschooled children aren’t locked in their houses. They’re out and about interacting in the community with people of all ages – not just kids their own age. There will never be a time again after school in which you are only around other people your age. It only happens in school, and thus, is a poor model of the real world. Lastly, I don’t consider it a bad thing that he didn’t know the slang. People who communicate with proper English are held in higher regard and it is a more respectful way to communicate. I went to public school, my oldest graduated from public school, and a few of my other kids were in school at some point. My observations are based on my experience of living in both worlds, and my assessment stands.

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      1. You can not attempt to dismiss my claims based on how I’ve based them on my own personal experiences and then continue to justify your own views by recounting your experiences. Second, I’ve had several talks on this topic with many other people who’ve attended public school, include students many years my senior and minor in age, and even people from different countries, and we all agree that sheltered/home-schooled children are always the outliers in social settings, because they’ve never been given the chance to interact with people their own age, or see things for themselves without the influence of their families. Also, in many if not all languages, there are about two versions of a language. The standard, textbook version, and colloquial. Colloquial is where cultural nuances, slang, and jokes come from. Lack of understanding of colloquial terms in a language, especially in English, is practically a death sentence. It’s virtually impossible to understand the always-evolving and extremely complicated nuance of the English language. And it’s possible to speak both properly and in colloquial terms– I’m doing it now, aren’t I? I could speak in colloquial English if I wished, but I guess that really wouldn’t make sense cuz I’m having like a debate witchu right now. Don’t want to be caught lacking, since that’d be a lil sus on my part. Anyways, my point still stands, and I still wholeheartedly agree with it.

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        1. I find it amusing that you believe public school students are the experts on homeschoolers. What you believe about homeschoolers are myths. Do you honestly believe that homeschoolers don’t have friends? Play sports? Participate in extracurricular activities? Guess what? They do. Your opinion is based on ignorance. Homeschoolers are not locked in their houses, for heaven’s sake. I’m going to let you in on a little secret – it doesn’t matter how many public school students you talk to about homeschooling because you won’t get an accurate picture of the reality of it since none of you have ever experienced it. Again, your assumptions are based on outright falsehoods, and they honestly prove what little exposure you’ve had. One more thing, children are not meant to be raised by their peers. They are meant to be raised by their parents. Take a look at the mess our society is in as a result of kids being most influenced by their peers. No thank you.

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        2. I’d also like to add that most homeschoolers, including my children, DO understand colloquial language. Again, they do leave the house. They have friends. They watch YouTube. They listen to music. In this day and age, you can’t do anything without being exposed to it. That doesn’t mean they have to use it indiscriminately.

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        3. One last thing. Your comment about homeschoolers being “social outliers” actually proves the point of this blog post. The idea that all kids should talk the same and behave the same is the conformity I was talking about.

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    2. I forgot to add that teacher certification programs mainly focus on classroom techniques and the paperwork that comes with the job. A teaching degree does not mean that the teacher knows everything there is to know. No one knows their children more than parents, and the fact that colleges actively recruit homeschoolers is a testament to their success.

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