One thing I love about homeschooling is the freedom to leave schedules behind and hit the road. I wouldn’t describe myself as a big traveler, but I love to take (short) road trips with the kids. Sometimes the trips are educational, and sometimes they’re mostly just for fun, but we always enjoy the chance to veer off our regular path for a day or two.
If we’re going somewhere in conjunction with a topic we’ve been learning about, we take lots of pictures and include them in my son’s notebook. Sometimes he’ll do a narration or some other written assignment about what we’ve seen and done. Sometimes the trip is all we do, and I think that’s okay. If you start to turn every field trip into a huge project, pretty soon your kids aren’t going to want to go.
If the trip is just for fun, though, we often take a bit of our normal schoolwork on the go. When we headed to Stillwater and Enid last week, there were a few things I wanted to take with us for reading that we hadn’t gotten to at the beginning of the week. Our Bible story for the week became bedtime reading—we even got ahead! In the morning at the hotel, we read through another chapter on Norman Rockwell, the artist we’re studying this month. In just a couple of short readings we got the information covered and no one complained about working on vacation.
We rarely go anywhere without bringing several books in the car with us. My son always has a chapter book going, so if we go on a trip, the book goes, too. Usually he reads to himself, stopping every so often with a, “Hey, Mom! Listen to this part!” Sometimes, though, he reads out loud to me, and if he’s feeling generous, he’ll read books to his two year old sister.
Just in case books and magazines get tiring, I try to bring something fun along, too. I picked up Turbo Twist Spelling and Twist and Shout Multiplication at a consignment sale a while back and both kids like them. Granted, sometimes they become some kind of secret spy tool, but if there’s some multiplication practice going on in the process, I’m not going to complain.
I’m so glad homeschooling doesn’t always have to be done at home!