HAMMOND | Some people say homeschooling lacks opportunities for teaching children social skills, but this view is far from the truth, according to homeschooling mother Sandra Cybulski.
Cybulski and her husband, of Hammond, have been homeschooling their high school freshman since he began kindergarten.
Cybulski believes socialization should expose him to the world in which he will function, not just children his own age. Her son helps with family activities such as grocery shopping and the nursing home ministry from the family’s church.
Socialization with children his age is also covered with Boy Scout camping trips and participation in the Homeschool Gym and Swim program at the Hammond Family YMCA.
At the Y, nurturing the potential of every child and teen is the focus and the Homeschool Gym and Swim program is available for homeschooled youth 6 to 14. One hour is devoted to gym games and exercise and the other hour is devoted to a swim class.
In order to provide families a broad range of options, the Crossroads YMCA branches (Hammond, Griffith and Crown Point) have partnered together. This gives home school students a chance to attend all three classes during the week as all branches run on the same five-week session schedule.
The Griffith YMCA holds classes on Mondays and will include art and gym. The Hammond YMCA class meets Wednesdays for gym and swim. Southlake YMCA has Friday classes for gym and swim. Families must register at each branch they plan to attend.
Fees are $25 for members and $50 for nonmembers. There were three, five-week sessions held during the spring semester
Cybulski said she and her husband want to give their son a Christian education, but they share with many others the desire for flexibility and high standards.
“We don’t have to drag through something that he’s mastering very quickly,” she said. Instead, her son can focus on subjects that challenge him or become more proficient at subjects in which he performs well.
“If he’s struggling with something, we can spend the summer on it. If he’s excelling with it, we can add on the additional math course,” she added.
Katie Galvan, of Hammond, and her two children are members of the same homeschool group as the Cybulskis. She said their family has gone with the group to see a play. On other occasions, they visited a museum, a maple syrup farm and a dairy farm.