4 TIPs on Socialization in a Virtual School
You have made the choice of online high school for your child. Good choice! But, what about opportunities for socialization?
We understand the importance of a rigorous accredited education, and we also realize that learning to socialize is just as important. When your child moves on to college or the workplace, he or she will need the social skills to communicate, network and interact well with others. Here are some tips from Whitmore School parents to help your child’s social development.
Get Involved with Your Community
Ask your child to research local community clubs, sports, performing or fine arts opportunities and volunteering opportunities with local civic organizations. These can be a great place for your child to build friendships based on common interests. Ask your child to choose one or two outside activities. Then, adjust your school schedule around these activities. Remember, that your child may complete their school work in three to four hours. This leaves more time for other fun stuff.
Here are ideas for researching your local community:
Rotary Club in (your town)
Pet shelters in (your town)
Food banks in (your town)
Boy Scouts of America in (your town)
Girls Scouts in (your town)
4-H Club in (your town)
Take a Field Trip
Allow your teen to plan a field trip. Museums, art events, and the local farmers’ market are learning opportunities. If your child is a bit of a thrill seeker, have him or her research the physics behind roller coasters. Then take a trip to a theme park and implement the physics!
Many local homeschool groups organize field trips and welcome online schoolers. Research your area for homeschool groups and inquire if you can participate. Field trips are fun, and educational, and a great way for your teen to meet peers. They can also be a good connection for you to network with other parents whose children “go to school” at home.
Participate in Enjoyable Sports and Activities
- Recreational or Intramural Sports
- Art classes
- Music lessons
- Dance classes
Some public school districts allow private school and virtual school students to participate in extracurricular activities such as sports, band, drama and other art clubs at the local high school. Check with your school district to learn the procedure for your child to participate. Being part of a team or club teaches students leadership skills and the importance of collaboration.
Join a Group of Homeschoolers
Whitmore School is not affiliated with a particular homeschool group, but parents have told us that local homeschool groups have welcomed them. Many teens have told us they chose Whitmore school to get away from the teen social drama that is prevalent in many traditional schools. If your child is shy or more of an introvert, they may feel comfortable socializing with other teens who school from home.
With a little research, your child can have a safe and active social life.
Whitmore School, accredited by Cognia, (formerly AdvancED), offers four Diploma Programs for students wishing to enroll full-time to earn their high school diploma. Additionally, students looking to get back on track to graduate on time can enroll in individual courses and take up to 12 months to complete their course. There are no semesters, and as such, students enroll and begin any time and work at their own pace.
Click here to read more about Whitmore School’s flexible mastery-based learning environment. It might just be the right choice for you.
Whitmore School is School – Anytime – Anyplace!
Ellen Ray, Principal and parent of Alina, 2009 Graduate
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