I remember when my son was about ten. He was at a 4-H meeting and a reporter took a photo of him for the local newspaper. Underneath that picture, the reporter wrote these words, "Loren said that he does 4-H because his mother makes him."
I was abhorred. I couldn't believe it. How could my precious boy tell all of the world that I forced him to participate. I came up with the answer though. He told them that because it is the truth. It was never a question of whether he would participate- it was a given. I hear so many children say that they don't want to do things. They aren't interested. As a homeschool parent one of my life goals is to raise interested children. I want them to desire to learn. I want them to seize opportunities that come their way. I truly think it is one of the most important gifts we can give our children.
I can give you a list of things that I have made my children do- things that they have not wanted. They are better people for it. I am certain of that. I am not into torturing my children. I do not desire them to suffer. Yet, I have no issue with them squirming a little. They must learn how to handle themselves in all circumstances. For all of you who do not know me, I consider my children some of my best friends. I would do anything for them. Anything. Including pushing them out of their comfort zone.
I have a child who is an introvert. I have one who is an extrovert. I am not certain what the last one is- perhaps a hairball...?
The introvert I push to talking to others. The extrovert I push to hold back (periodically.) The hairball? Well, I just let her be a hairball. I make my kids do a lot of things. I am their teacher. Period. By staying at home and teaching them, I know them well. I know their strengths and weaknesses. I would be failing them terribly if I did not help them become all that they are intended to be.
The little ten year old truth teller? He is the most involved in 4-H. He loves it. He is also my introvert. You would not know it if you met him though. He is able. He is willing. He is thirteen. The reason that he is all of these things? His mother made him try.