Over the past two interviews, girls who have participated in various homeschooling practices offered up their experiences as current homeschoolers. This week, a now-freshman in college, Kyle, talked about past experiences with homeschooling and how it has affected his success as of right now.
Kyle attends Hendrix college in Arkansas. He said, “My major is undeclared, but I’m kind of falling to chemistry. Maybe, biochemistry or molecular biology. I’m using that as a framework for the classes I’m taking.” He explained that the reason he chose Hendrix—which is a small liberal arts college in Conway, Arkansas—is because it allows him the freedom of taking lots of different kinds of classes.
Before college, Kyle spent four years at HomeLink—a homeschool co-op that was mentioned in previous interviews. Kyle elaborates upon both the ‘before Homelink’ and ‘after HomeLink’ phases, as well as the opportunities those have provided him. He said, “There was a ‘before and after.’ Basically, before I went to HomeLink, [schooling] was very free form. As long as I got a certain amount of work done every year it was fine. There would be times where I would just be doing other stuff—for example I’d go to my friend Patrick’s farm and hang out there, do work, and explore this huge 300 acre farm. That was ideal, it was amazing. But then, of course, I’d get behind in schoolwork and I’d do school all day long. We went all year long for school, so we wouldn’t have, like, a summer break. The ‘after’ period was when I was at HomeLink, and now you’ve got homework and deadlines and grades—and I had had grades before, but they weren’t really as important, and now they were really important.” Kyle continues to explain how his particular experiences with homeschooling have helped him. He said, “It was really good because it helped me to get my time-management right—get that skill built up. Which, let me tell you, if you don’t have that skill in college, you’re going to suffer.”
Overall, Kyle feels as if homeschooling was very beneficial as far as opportunities go. He explains: “That, I think, is its primary benefit—the opportunities homeschooling has provided. Which is funny, because you would think that you’re going to have so many opportunities inside the system of public schooling.” Kyle lists some of the things he would not have without homeschooling. He said, “There’s little ones, like being in a circus, hanging out at my friend’s farm, but also bigger stuff like my internship at the science center and being here at Hendrix—which I probably wouldn’t have applied to or ever known about if it hadn’t been for Mrs. Tate (who helps runs HomeLink), because her son is here and she’s been a big fan of the school.”
In the end, Kyle had quite a few things to say about homeschoolers in general. He said, “People say that homeschoolers are unsocialized, but I don’t feel like that’s the case. I feel like I definitely got a lot of socializing done in high-school. I feel like I’m very good at talking to people, and I’m very comfortable in social situations—and that’s partly due to the fact that I’ve had experience with so many different people.” He built upon that statement by talking about the nature of homeschooling: “I think the thing about homeschooling is that by its nature, it’s different for everyone.”
The next interview will be posted on April 8, 2017.