There are several large lifestyle changes to be made if you choose to take up full-time RVing, especially if you are bringing the children along on your cross-country adventures. Not only do you have to worry about housing and feeding everyone in a limited space, but you also have your children’s’ education. Basic education is required by law for children up to a certain age, anywhere from 16 to 18 depending on your home state’s laws.
Full-timers with children will have to set up some homeschooling system, RV travel homeschool if you will. Let’s look at homeschooling while on the road such as some of the benefits, drawbacks, and resources for the family.
Starting Your Own RV Homeschooling Program
The good news for parents and children is that homeschooling in an RV doesn’t have to be dramatically different than any other type of schooling. You have less space to work with, in a brick and mortar home you may have an entire room set apart as the classroom but that will not be feasible in even a large motorhome. RVing offers a unique opportunity for an on the road education your children will never find in a traditional classroom setting, no matter where in the US you call home.
One of your first challenges will be devoting a space or being able to transform an area into a temporary classroom setting, having a particular layout or design devoted to learning will increase the overall effectiveness of an on the road education.
When it comes to an RV, you may not necessarily have the dedicated space you’d like to do this. This is where thinking outside the box and using laptops and tablets may be helpful.
What Are the Benefits of RV Homeschooling?
Homeschooling on the road does provide its own unique set of benefits. Life on the road creates a dynamic and creative learning environment where you can cater to a child’s learning experience. For example, you may decide to do a lesson on geological activity while at Yellowstone National Park or go through the history of the Civil War while at the Gettysburg battle site.
This dynamic and hands-on learning has been shown to be beneficial to a child’s growing mind. The shifting landscape and non-linear learning could keep your child more focused on the task at hand.
The other advantages of RV homeschooling are some of the same benefits that come with traditional homeschool. Benefits such as educational, physical and emotional freedoms, the ability to operate on your schedule and the ability to make changes should something need to be changed.
Many parents and children who homeschool also report closer ties and stronger relationships compared to those students and parents in traditional school settings. Students who have also homeschooled regularly outperform traditional students when it comes to standardized testing such as the ACT or SAT.
What Are the Drawbacks of RV Homeschooling?
One of the most significant drawbacks of RV homeschooling, other than the smaller size, of course, may have to do with one of the big advantages. Life on the road is one of constant change, while this change seems to be beneficial it is always nice to add a bit of stability now and then.
The other drawbacks to RV homeschooling are the same drawbacks of homeschooling in general. Coming up with lesson plans, being both parents and teacher and trying to become experts on all subjects can become quite stressful on the parent. Ensuring your children balance school work with physical activity can be challenging, too, depending on how long you’re on the road and where you’re traveling to. Make sure to plan outdoor time when the weather’s appropriate based on where your RV adventures take you.
An essential part of school for children is learning to interact with other children, something they won’t get with homeschooling, especially on the road. When choosing destinations and places to stay, it’s important to find ones that allow your children to interact with other children on the road.
Deciding to hit the road full-time and the decision to homeschool your children are both major lifestyle changes that require plenty of research and careful thought before executing. Make sure you talk to plenty of other road schooling RVers to get an idea of what life on the road and teaching your children on the road is like.