The fall school year is beginning. If you’re struggling with how to create another year of exciting homeschool curriculum, you might want to consider a roadschooling experiment! If you’ve never considered including roadschooling in your homeschool lineup, the cool fall months present a perfect opportunity to travel in comfort before winter storms cause closed roads and “snow days!”
WHAT IS ROADSCHOOLING?
The website Roadschool – Where Travel and Learning Come Together defines the term as “a form of homeschooling where families harness education and travel to create an educational structure that best meets their student’s needs and interests.” Roadschooling creates an opportunity for families to travel together to some specific destination or region where they learn about the area from the perspective of history, culture, or geography – or all three!
Just like homeschooling, roadschool can be anything you want it to be. If you have an RV, you’re already halfway there! You can set aside a portion of time you’ll use to travel with your kids full-time or you can take shorter weekend trips to places that might provide an interesting learning experience for your homeschool students. If you’re a parent who can work from home, you might be perfectly situated to take an entire year for a nationwide education journey!
You don’t have to own an RV to create an excellent roadschool experience. Tent camping provides excellent opportunities for weekend trips to spots within driving distance that can be made into spectacular learning experiences. Car trips to interesting destinations can be an excellent way to initiate a roadschool trip. Whatever travel mode you choose, roadschooling can create a wide range of excellent educational opportunities for you and your homeschool student(s).
There are many ways to homeschool while on the road. Some roadschoolers continue learning while on a vacation, while others take it to the extreme, and travel the world while continuing to homeschool.
If you have the time and budget for world travel, an excellent companion curriculum approach to roadschooling is world schooling or “learning through life experiences as you travel the world.” The local option, roadschooling, generally involves a combination of available homeschool curriculum and learning through local travel experiences. (NOTE: for great homeschool curriculum ideas and resources, goto Homeschooling: Online Homeschool Programs, Curriculum, Courses | GSN (globalstudentnetwork.com)).
Roadschool curriculum can be as varied and diverse as each homeschool family and can easily be adjusted to address the need for learning-style flexibility for each child in the family.
One roadschool parent pointed out that “Many of the things my kids might be missing out on in school can be Googled in a few seconds today. As travelers, we are constantly having to research where to go, what to do, how to budget for trips, and actually implement plans.”
Another parent noted: “It’s not something we add to our kids’ homeschool program or work in on weekends and over summer holidays when they are not in a proper school; it forms the backbone of their educations. We are intentionally using the world as their classroom and making it our business to see as much of it as we possibly can.”
- Roadschooling is not necessarily easy. It requires a flexible mindset.
- Roadschooling requires organizational skills.
- You’ll want to think long and hard about what you’re going to take along on your travels – LIMIT what you choose to pack!
- Roadschooling does take a lot of advance preparation for a successful experience.
- Be selective in choosing a curriculum – select programs that lend themselves well to traveling, locally or abroad.
IS ROADSCHOOLING LEGAL IN MY STATE?
Homeschooling is legal in all 50 states. This doesn’t mean you can simply hit the road and assume you’re operating within your state’s specific homeschooling regulations as you travel around learning about the world. Before you pack up your camper or book that little cabin in the woods, be sure to research the applicable homeschooling laws and requirements for your own state. (NOTE: For a state-by-state summary of U.S. homeschooling regulations, visit Homeschool State Laws – Interactive Map (homeschoolfacts.com)).
Homeschooling is not a lockdown education model where kids are stuck in the house, away from the realities of public schools and from “others” who may create a bad influence. For most homeschoolers, this is far from the truth. A subset of the most adventurous of homeschool parents refer to themselves as “roadschoolers.” Their total purpose is to travel with their kids to as many interesting locations as they can, provide learning experiences for their kids in as many places as possible, and make homeschooling into one huge field trip.
Anyone who is willing to travel with their children can create a road school opportunity. Just shift your mental priorities towards creating the best possible educational experience wherever your travels take you and in every moment you experience.