Congratulations: You’ve escaped the monotonous routine of life—and brought your brood along with you. In doing so, you’ve joined a record number of young families trading the daily grind for the spontaneity of the RV lifestyle. You’re officially part of a movement that endorses, well, movement. Which is a great example for your kids. Because life itself is learning, and it’s important to get the kids out there living.
But you might be asking: Once we’re all out there this fall, how do I keep up with the kids’ formal education? Good question, but don’t sweat it—you’re not the first family to take on the challenge. There are lots of helpful resources for your family to make roadschooling a normal part of the adventure.
Here are four things to keep in mind as you rock the role of teacher in your RV schoolhouse.
Accept that you may not know what you’re doing (at first).
Especially if you’re new to homeschooling. Taking on this responsibility takes time, and you’re allowed to show yourself some grace. Try new things, see what works, and forget what doesn’t.
Don’t feel like you need to replicate a school day.
Probably one of the biggest advantages to homeschooling is that it doesn’t have to be an 8-hour day trapped at a desk. (Can I get an “Amen?!”) If you are able to fit a day of education into two hours, all the better. Call it a day and maybe try your hand at another family activity. Like nap time.
Blur some lines on what is educational—for your sanity.
Kids are sneaky—we know this. And they can sense weakness. If you always tip them off on which experiences are meant to be “school,” they may not express … well … a zeal for learning. So be as sneaky as your kids: Break the monotony with educational activities, or adventures, when possible. If they’re anything like their parents, they’ll appreciate the change of pace, which reduces pressure on you—and prevents potential tears from them.
Prepare as much as you can before hitting the road.
If at all possible, choose a curriculum and have a plan before setting out. You will have a better idea of what supplies are needed, what your schedule is going to be, and how much your children will need from you. You also may be traveling in the vicinity of historic sites or cool science museums—all of which happen to be out there. Your preparation will make the roadschooling experience more interactive for the whole family, which is really what the RV lifestyle is about anyway.
Homeschooling on the road shouldn’t be a drain. (Of course, we cannot say the same of those goofball kids.) But, so long as you plan ahead and embrace the uncertainties that are inherent with a nomadic lifestyle (you already do this), we know that you’ll be voted Teacher of the Year in no time! At least by your tiny student body.
Find Resources for Your Mobile Curriculum
- SI.edu/kids (Who doesn't love the Smithsonian?!)