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Home School Help - Can Homeschooling Help Anxious or Shy Children?

Many people think that the key to getting over your shyness is to come to the open without withdrawing into a shell and get used to mixing up freely with people. That has some truth in it, but since this is a question concerning a shy child, there are other psychological implications needing careful consideration, that override the above hypothesis.  In that context, contrary to popular thinking, a public school is not the best place to correct a child who is already shy.

We should also not forget that before the 1800’s when the concept of public schooling started gaining ground, all our ancestors including the greats learnt and received training in all aspects of a successful life within a home environment.

Imagine an already shy child who has now reached the school going age of five years.  He is still comfortable only amidst his immediate family circle and takes a very long time to accept any outsiders to his confidence. What will he feel like if you were to forcibly thrust him among strangers by admitting him to a public school? He could suffer untold mental agony and possibly irreversible psychological damage. An exceptional shyness is also some sort of mental and psychological sickness that has to be addressed with utmost care, love and understanding; and not with cruelty.

So let us not push him to an unknown world of trauma and torture to endure for many more years. The best way to help him out of his shyness and anxieties would be to homeschool him and gradually and tactfully expose and support him to mingle and interact with others starting from a few children of his own age to play with from your locality.

Some schools have realized the gravity of this problem and responded by introducing a scheme called the “buddy” system to make the entry of shy children to school very smoother and tolerable for them by assigning an older child for support for a few days so that the newbie can adopt to the new environment with extra ease, comfort and confidence. However, if the child is extremely shy by nature, this temporary support may not be good enough to prevent him from feeling miserable even while it lasts; and more so when the support of the older child is withdrawn leaving him to fend for himself amidst a sea of new faces. 

In such circumstances, nothing can help a shy and anxious child to become normal without suffering undue mental agonies, as under a homeschooling environment with the loving care of its own mother, although this process may take a little time. All homeschoolers can take heart from the much-publicized Stanford University research studies that found that homeschooled children obtained higher marks in tests conducted on social awareness and accomplishments; apart from being better oriented socially then their public school counterparts. What better testimonial than this do you need on homeschooling for breeding socially skilled persons?

Past great US Presidents like Abraham Lincoln and George Washington are good examples of homeschooled products complete with all the required social and leadership qualities. A question that arises as to the wisdom of helping a shy child through homeschooling is, if the child’s parents themselves were badly lacking in social skills. It could be genetics at play. E

ven if you are a very shy person who does not mix up easily with others, you can still help your child over this problem by inviting some kids home for playing in the evenings and gradually intensifying the visits to spend the day and week ends and even for short vacations. The parents of those kids too will no doubt reciprocate by inviting your child to their homes and as this trend grows, soon your child would be bouncing with exuberance and self-confidence with no traces of shyness!

There is no doubt that the home environment has all the ingredients to enable a child to learn and grow up in happiness.

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