What’s so good about roadschooling you may ask? ONLY EVERYTHING!
I have had such an adventure while being roadschooled. For school, I do fun things that teach me in ways that I will always remember. You could call it a lesson that I will never forget.
Sometimes history books can be a little boring. With road schooling, I get to experience history. One of my favorite places to learn about ancient history was Mammoth Cave, Ky. While spelunking in the cave (with a ranger), on a special youth tour, I was able to witness ancient artifacts exactly where the Indians laid them down thousands of years ago.
The two battlefields I liked visiting the most were Gettysburg and Little Big Horn. I was taught in home schooling about Gettysburg, but never really understood it very well. Then, I watched the movie, but couldn’t relate well with such an old war.
However, my family and I went to the Gettysburg National Battle Field on the 150th anniversary and went on ranger program to walk and understand every step of Pickett’s Charge. My mom and dad hired a ranger to drive us around and stop at places on the battlefield. We stood right on the battlefield where the soldiers fought and the ranger described it so that I could imagine it like it was happening as if I was a soldier in that war.
When I read about Custer’s Last Stand at Little Big Horn, it was interesting. However, when I visited the battlefield and saw all the grave stones and knew that they were buried where they had fallen, I felt the sorrow for the families and their loved ones. Some of them didn’t know which grave was their husband, father, or brother. I left with a heavy heart for the Indians, the American soldiers and their families. I don’t know if I could get this in-depth if I just read about it or just watched a movie about it.
I also visited the Seminole Indian reservation, in southern Florida, and watched a re-enactment. It was interesting to observe the battles through the eyes of the Seminole Indians, they always win in the re-enactment and overpower the white man. It’s a very good show.
A school day could also be just learning about culture through friends I have made friends all over the United States, but the friends that taught me the most are my friends up in Alaska that are Inuit. They taught me how to fish on a boat for salmon and how to catch shrimp and so many other things about their life.
Learning about local games and customs can help you to understand a region’s culture. Sometimes museums have games that people played years ago or even in this time era. In Alaska, I was able to watch the World Eskimo Indian Olympics and each challenge was tied to way of life for the Eskimos. For example, a blanket toss challenge goes back to when they would toss a child on a skin held by villagers so whales could be spotted.
Food is also a good way to learn about many cultures. My dad always looks up local food in states he knows we will be traveling through and we are all encouraged to try. From Philly cheese steaks to burgers boiled in Mississippi water to Indian tacos, I have really loved learning this way.
COSI, in Columbus, Ohio, was a great, and fun, hands-on museum. One of my favorite exhibits was the teen tech. They offer the use of their recording studio, you can record songs or even dance routines as well as a 3-D printer. I think 3-D printers are so cool. The people who operate this exhibit were so nice. The staff took time to explain everything that we needed to know and, soon, we were on our way to designing our own creations.
We were able to make anything we wanted to make; my brother made an egg bird, my sister made a feather bookmark (my mom calls it a quitter stick) and I made a ring with my name on it.
When I was there in 2015, there was no extra cost for teen tech, so I highly suggest checking it out. COSI also has seasonal shows, a medical exhibit, an IMAX theater and so much more. I spent nine hours there and didn’t get to see the whole museum.
In Fort Myers, Fla., my mom takes me to the Imaginarium Museum. This is a great place for mom and dad to relax while the kids learn and have fun. The Imaginarium offers a touch tank (included), as well as shows with animals and after the shows you are invited to touch the animals, but make sure to ask just to be sure. I have attended homeschool classes here and I find them very informative. They have just recently added field trips that coincide with the lesson taught (small extra fee required).
I also go to rallies for a group we belong to called Fulltime Families. About twice a year we have these get-togethers where I get to see my friends, as well as meet new kids who roadschool. We share ideas and curriculum with each other. Sometimes my mom decides to add or change our current curriculum based on these ideas.
I learn so much from attending churches while we are on the road. Once we attended a church and they were planning a mission trip to Moore, Okla., in order to help the tornado victims in 2013. I helped the kids stay entertained while their parents filled out necessary paperwork. Sometimes I helped with shopping for the family’s food, shoes, clothes and other necessities. The mission trip taught me not only to be a servant of the Lord, but also about the destruction a tornado can do to a town’s infrastructure and spirit.
My family is big on factory tours. Most factories offer tours to see the process it takes to produce their product. Sometimes a factory may even have samples if it’s a food or snack factory. From Snyders pretzel factory, to watching our new couch being made at Home Reserve, to watching a RV, just like ours, being made, there is always something new to learn in every state, so be sure to not over look this opportunities.
You don’t need to be a genius to teach kids while roadschooling. Whether your lesson comes from friendships made, tours taken, museums visited or even people helped, education is available to all who are willing to learn and be creative in searching for resources. America is a great place to be!