I’m so excited to share Mary from @weelittlenomads today. She was one of the very first accounts I started following when we were looking into Airstreams. I love following their family travels & hope to pass them on the road one day! They are in mid-renovation of a new trailer so make sure to go see their progress! - Colleen
Making the decision to educate your children at home is momentous. It not only dictates the learning environment for your kids and their childhood experiences, but also your parenting schedule and strategy.
Now that we have this big ole ice cream Sunday in front of us called HOMESCHOOL- let’s just put a cherry on top by putting that school in motion on wheels and calling it ROADSCHOOL.
There are so many similarities between the two and many times they go hand-in-hand with curriculums and schedules, but there are also many differences. The most notable one is the lack of a permanent home-base. This creates challenges such as - library cards, sport leagues, subscription mail kits, and inability to form weekly learning groups or join co-op schools.
Instead of focusing on the closed windows, let’s focus on the doors that open for a child and parent that school on the road.
Ability to travel to various points of interest and not only teaching something, but experiencing it. Lessons about different climates and land formations are more exciting when we can explore deserts, volcanos, and coastal regions. We can touch sea stars in tidal pools on the rocky Pacific Coast, and walk along the harsh terrain of the Arizona desert. We can color pictures of peninsulas and plateaus and then see the landscape with our own eyes - bringing geography and geology to life in unforgettable ways.
Nature at our doorstep, an ever-changing backyard. One day we are picking poppies and identifying the California wildflowers, and the next we are in the Pacific Northwest touching moss and fungi species on the rainforest floor. Nature studies is a very prominent part of our schooling journey because we are constantly outside exploring our new surroundings. National and State Parks are great roadschooling resources - with junior ranger programs making it fun and accessible for kids to learn about the wildlife in that area.
Cultural and Social skills flourish. I know what you are all thinking - but what about socialization?!? Won’t you raise an unsocialized weirdo living this way?! All I know is that my children are incredibly social and make friends everywhere we travel - they have learned how to communicate and create relationships that are respectful and culturally sensitive. If they do not enjoy the company of another child, they can walk away - they do not learn the ill behaviors of classmates - instead they form friendships at playgrounds, museums, and with fellow traveling families. They have strong bonds with their siblings and love to meet peers along the way.
Technology has come a long way. Online resources are available to fill in some of the gaps. We can do online art classes, music classes, math classes - you name it! We can download any book with a library card from our home state. Online subscriptions are available for National Geographic Kids Magazine or documentary series. The possibilities are endless!
In fact, we created an online subscription for a human anatomy and physiology homeschool curriculum to fill in a science gap. My husband and I are both medical - he is an ICU nurse and I am a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. We wanted to create a simple lesson plan for families to learn about health and wellness. Each month introduces a new bodily system with a correlating disease or disorder; for instance, respiratory system and asthma lesson is month 1. It can easily be applied to homeschool and roadschool families alike because it is conveniently sent to your email at the start of each month with the downloadable PDFs and linked resources.
To learn more visit https://www.littlenomads.net/wee-little-learners/
I have learned so much from teaching my children on the road. It takes patience and perseverance and a large dose of flexibility. Here are my main takeaways from this type of education:
Let the travels be your guide to teaching - base your lessons on your surroundings.
Don’t get weighed down by materials. School supplies are wonderful, but most of the time less is more.
Experience trumps worksheets. If you have to choose between your child sitting in a chair and writing 100 multiplication problems versus creating tiny boats to float down the nearby creek - always pick the latter. Kids learn through play!
Mother Earth is the greatest teacher, let her do most of the work.
Most everything worth teaching is done outside of a desk.
Visit us @weelittlenomads on instagram to follow our roadschool journey!
Vist our website https://www.littlenomads.net