Hi Kiwimummy : )
On our journey i have learned that there are a multitude of different learning scenarios & all of them have merit. Whats more is my perception of growing up going to big school going to highschool & then onto tafe/ uni has altered dramatically....its such a slim view of 'education'. I now feel that moving through the different scenarios of learning is actually quite essential for kiddos...we go for what works at the time & are now accepting that as our children grow & change so does what they want & need in their learning.
Our teen is about to come back to homeschooling, but that will also include some work during the week too.
Like many others we started out with an amazing curriculum & shelved in a few weeks in, opting for a more interest/ projects based flow, i guess you could call it unschooling, though we choose to do some things 'by the book', like math. Its quite easy to meet the required learning outcomes as kids just learn, about anything, dont ever fear unschooling : ) I think its actually easier than 'teaching' your kids. Oddly enough it was when i realised i didnt have to 'teach' my child that all the stress fell away & we found our earning groove. Your son is also very young so you have the time to allow yourself the time to give thinsg a shot at home, then if it doesnt work for you he might go off to school.
One thing i do know with homeschooling is that you do need to put the effort in to go to the gatherings, organised events etc & sometimes you do have to drive a fair way if you dont live in an area with a large HS community. Its not as easy as sending your kids to school & not all parents can do it (though i feel most could if they gave it a shot, its very different to what you perceive it to be before you start).
Anyway i say dont stress it, go with what works for you all until it no longer works for you then make a change.
ps: as for friends & socialising, i have long believed that the putting kids in a room with 25 other kids who posses the same social skills doesnt actually constitute a healthy or realistic social learning environment...how much can 5 year olds teach each other about socialising
Oddly enough our child went back to school for social reasons & is now leaving school again due to social reasons lol the grass inst greener on he other side after all :mrgreen I am glad his social experiences & encounters will now be far broader & more reflective of the world we live in.