I have received questions about how to homeschool for the almost 18 years that I’ve been educating my children at home. A good many of those questions have come as we’ve traveled because folks are genuinely curious about how we handle academia on the go. Every now and then I get the person who looks at me sideways and upside down and crooked indicating that they very much disapprove of our educational freedoms and choices. That’s OK. Mr. Patient and I have learned what’s best for our children and we are good with our choices. Furthermore, I’ve learned to extend more grace than I used to.
But to respond to some of those questions of, “How do you homeschool on the road?”, let’s talk about it…
We kind of use the CC method. No, I’m not talking about the popular and effective Classical Conversations. It’s a term I made up, CC, Concentrated Chunks.
First off, we try very diligently, especially in recent months, to not overbook our schedule with meeting folks or seeing all the great things in America. We’re trying to intentionally plan down days where we have no out-of-home obligations, or only the laundromat.
Secondly, we take advantage of these down days by “catching up” on any written work we need to do such as grammar or composition. The children also work on practicing piano using a portable keyboard and work on their Teaching Textbook math which is on the computer. (Two of the children are “on grade level” and one is “above grade level”.)
Mr. Patient uses Beautiful Feet history curriculum and living books on an (ir)regular basis to lead the children in history lessons and discoveries. You’ll understand the (ir)regular in a second.
(We are currently researching science curricula for Jonboy.)
So we really hone in on chunks of academic time when we have the opportunity, play “catch up“, if you will.
We also have Concentrated Chunks of learning time when we visit historical museums, Wildlife preserves, famous peoples’ homes in all sizes of towns across America. (Thus, the lack of using a lot of history curricula at this juncture in our lives.) The children also learn a great deal of social skills, heritage stories, and a variety of information from the hundreds of people we meet as we travel. They are not afraid to strike up conversations and learn. Well, two of them are not afraid to do so but the third one is listening closely.
We also have quite a library of educational DVDs in our home and we visit as many libraries as possible for hours at a time. The children enjoy reading library books although we can’t check them out while traveling. Speaking of books, they all three love love love to read and do so often. We require that they read the Bible and a book of their choice at least an hour and a half every day.
They have “wind down“ time from 8 to 10 every night, as possible, and often times they listen to creation-based educational audios on their individual DVD players which Gran bought for Christmas last year.
So as you see, we basically have to be flexible and redeem the times that we have whether it’s to catch up on handwritten and traditional schoolwork or take advantage of what some folks might call unschooling opportunities.
Our homeschooling has looked different every year that I have been a home educator. It will look very different when we settle down in the **near** future as well. Honestly, I’m looking forward to a more rigid routine; but for now, this is how we roll, literally.