This post is part of 30 Ways in 30 days to Redesign Your Life and Travel the World. This series seeks to give you the practical, real world steps you need to take to get from wherever you are, to exactly where you want to be– traveling the world and living the lifestyle you want.

A few weeks ago, I wrote Taking the Classroom on the Road and I promised readers a follow up post with insights from traveling homeschooling families.  I’m very excited to share today’s post, which includes interviews from three very interesting families.  If you’re thinking of homeschooling, I’d definitely take a look through some of the links they’ve provided and read more about it on their blogs.  A big thanks to Jeanne Dee, Brenna and Nancy for their help with this post!

30 ways in 30 days, homeschooling, education, parenting, travel inspirations

Jeanne Dee
Currently traveling around Europe
Homeschooling since: always
Age(s): 9

What’s homeschooling like? It truly is the best possible education and much easier than most people realize. It is a perfect combination with travel. We find we that we can get much more education out of much less time put into it.

How do you make it work? Our child is an advanced learner so can go at her own pace which is many years above her grade level. We homeschool a small amount daily at her level in English all year round and also use the local school in Spain for 4/5 months out of the year for deep immersion into her 2nd language, literature & culture.

We plan to also immerse her into a 3rd language-Mandarin Chinese in the same way when we get to Asia. Much of her homeschooling is done through her reading (geared to our travels) & other ways where she just thinks she is having fun. We also do her piano lessons via skype webcam from a teacher on another continent and do classes with John Hopkin’s University CTY program online and other online opportunities. Digital libraries and Brainpop are great fun for traveling homeschoolers too.

Tips for getting started: Read John Taylor Gatto and John Holt (“father” of unschooling).

Recommended Links:

Brenna Gibson Redpath, From Here To Uncertainty
Currently in Scotland (this week anyway).
Homeschooling since: always
Age(s): 7 and 11

Tips for getting started: Find out the legal implications of homeschooling in your state or country. Legal homeschooling varies widely across the US, and is illegal unless you yourself are a certified teacher in some countries, like Germany. Read books about, and by, other homeschooling families. Knowing success stories, and pitfalls, is helpful in daily homeschool life. Follow your children’s interests. If they don’t know what they are interested in, don’t panic. They will soon. Having said this – we planned to travel Europe for a year, and once we got here my son fell in love with Japan, and is currently obsessed. Sigh…

How do you incorporate travel into homeschooling? If you start homeschooling before you’re traveling, find a homeschool group if it’s available, and go to park days and field trips that they offer. Listen to other parents and ask questions. Take advantage of on-line school websites.

Decide your goals, and let those goals guide you. Do you plan to travel indefinitely – letting your traveling play a big part in your schooling life? Do you plan to be gone for a set amount of time, and want your children to be in-line with classmates when they come back? Does a regularly scheduled day feel best to you, or a looser see-what-the-day-brings vibe. There are so many different ways to successfully homeschool your children. You need to decide what feels like a good family schooling experience to you.

Recommended resources: My son, who is in 6th grade, really loves a company called Time 4 Learning, which offers an on-line curriculum. He goes as quickly (or as slowly) through the material as he needs. I like the way the website documents progress for parents, promotes independent work, and allows for strengths and weaknesses in different areas of learning. My son is a whiz at Language Arts and higher math, but will never, I fear, be an accomplished speller. He feels successful with this program. Time 4 Learning has on-line quizzes, and worksheet print-outs. It’s light on history and science in my opinion, but we’re living history every day.

Another company is K12. It offers lots of choices in curriculum, all under the legal K12 umbrella.

I brought along workbooks for my daughter by a company called Handwriting Without Tears, which is a wonderful curriculum that I used with both my kids for beginning reading and writing, as well as cursive.

Articles you’ve written that you’d like to share:

Nancy Sathre-Vogel, Family on Bikes
Biking across the Americas.
Homeschooling since: 2006/07 and 2008 – present
Age(s): 11 year old twins

Your Experience: Classroom teacher in Special Ed, elementary, and middle school math & science for 21 years

Tips for getting started: Just do it and trust in your kids. Take them out to every place you can think of – museums, parks, mountains, and lakes. Enjoy your surroundings and help the kids see the magic of what is around them! But mostly – never doubt your child. Never, ever, doubt your child.

Recommended Links:

Articles you’ve written that you’d like to share:

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Additional Resources