How to live a Nomad Life with kids

by , on
Sep 22, 2019

 

Nomad life with kids

How to live a Nomad life with kids? Is it possible?  The answer is yes! Of course it takes some planning and forethought. Its not without some element of RISK and Stress of course. We quit our jobs, I closed my yoga studio down. Yikes that’s scary enough in itself right! Yet, what’s life without risk? Yes, there is the budget and the family home, affordability. All this needs to be weighed up realistically before you make any BOLD moves.


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Homeschooling kids when travelling

by , on
Aug 25, 2019

Homeschooling kids when travelling long term

Homeschooling kids when travelling long term and living nomadically is possible, it takes some time and planning but once things are in place its really a wonderful opportunity to spend time with you kids. Learning and educating them through the lense of world travel, experiencing other cultures, food, languages, cities, great outdoors, history. Complimenting these experiences home schooling your kids can fit in nicely with your travel abroad.

Technology

These days we are able to access pretty much any information at a click of a mouse or swipe of a finger. So homeschooling is accessible and achievable for our kids regardless of whether we are travelling short or long term, there are many wonderful options out there now for our kids.

We decided after much debate and research that we would continue to educate our daughter during our sabbatical. Ella is 11 now so we didn’t want her to get too far behind in her studies whilst we were away. We knew we would be away for at least 12 months so we decided that it was best to keep our daughter engaged in some schooling curriculum during our travels. Best decision we made for our family.

We have been on the road travelling through Europe since June this year. We bought a van in the UK and began our journey in the UK. Prior to leaving Australia we took our time to weigh up the homeschooling options that are available to us in Australia. There are many online curriculum options, we were surprised how many in fact.

Homeschooling options 

In our country Australia we have many options available to us as families. If we choose to home school our children. It is legal to home school your kids in Australia, NZ, USA, Canada and many parts of Europe and Asia. However, there are some countries that do not allow kids to be home schooled. I have referred to this in another blog that I have written if you are interested in seeing which countries allow home schooling click here

I would advise to first check if you can take your kids out of school legally. Or, if there is a process you must undergo to apply to home school them. Be well informed and prepared. Do you research and homework and see what home schooling or long distance options are available for you kids before applying to do so. We needed to inform our school of our intentions to travel, we had fill in a form that was sent to the Education Department of our intentions, they approved and our deputy principal met with us informing us of our options on our return. Fairly straight forward. However, other countries can impose fines if you take your kids out of school and as I mentioned earlier, in some cases it is illegal to not send your kids to school.

Choosing the Right Home Schooling Curriculum for your kids?

There are many ways you can home school your kids. You can choose to enrol and pay for packages that map across closely to your countries school curriculum. Or you can choose to purchase an online subscription that facilitates main subjects and learning such as Maths, English, Sciences, Health, Geography, History and Arts. These may be in the form of an online program, using a combination of online learning packages such as:

Literacy Planet

This is an online program that facilitates 1000’s of children’s learning all over the world.

Mathletics for home

Another global software provider that supports in school education as well as home schooling education.

Swirk

Is an Australian online program, they have created animations, videos, games, activities and more to help you develop your understanding, complete assignments and revise for assessments, across English, Maths, Science, History, Geography and Commerce! They have a free trial you can do as well!

Global Village School

A US based online school curriculum for families, who benefit from their unique private school/homeschooling hybrid, which allows us to partner with families around the globe to create engaging, creative, flexible, and personalized school experiences.

Wolsey Hall Oxford – UK

More than 750,000 students worldwide have studied with us. And this experience enables their homeschooling students to gain the best grades possible in their examinations.

You may also decide to use distance education or home schooling programs. There are many available worldwide. Finding the right course curriculum for your kids is so important, just as it is important to send them to a school that you know they will flourish and explore, excel and develop. When we started to look at the programs we got our daughter involved as well. It was important she could see what the programs had to offer and what she would be doing on a day to day basis in terms of her studies and interactions, learning and the curriculum.

Who we chose

In the end we chose Complete Education Australia because it seemed the most balanced curriculum including subjects such as PE and Arts, along with all the standard classes you would find at school. It also allows us to map across to the Australian school curriculum. You can enrol term to term and they provide manuals in PDF format for you to be able to print off so you kids can work manually as well. Great for keeping these as work samples. And a parent guide so that you and your kids can fill in and keep as work examples to their school on their return should you decide to re-enrol you child back into the school system. 

Why would you homeschool?

Whether you are travelling with your kids or perhaps you have decided to home school you kids and take them out of a 9-5 environment, we have found many benefits to home schooling since we begun back in June this year.

Home schooling your kids gives you back back precious time to be with your loved ones

Its a wonderful opportunity to spend more hands on time with you kids as they grow up so fast. Since we begun our travel journey we have been able to enjoy more time with our daughter. Supporting her to learn in many ways, not just via a curriculum but seeing her experience the world in such a unique and exciting way through her eyes. Ella is learning about Roman history, Art, Religion, Culture, Food and Community as we travel. These lessons cannot be learnt alone in a text book. Its the real deal.  We have time now to sit and eat together, explore together and learn together. During our crazy busy lifestyle back home, everything was a rush, a push and shove to cram things in and it felt like life was passing by. Our kid was growing up and we were missing all the fine details.

Flexibility

Homeschooling gives you and most importantly your kids freedom and flexibility, creativity to move away from a standardised system. Your child is given the opportunity to flourish in many ways. Teaching them the importance of commitment, self regulation, self esteem, planning, research, timelines, deadlines and self exploration. Setting guidelines for when to complete their own studies allows your kid to become organised and responsible for their own learning. Its a powerful skill to learn and one that is not easily learnt in a school classroom environment.

Focus on a few subjects per day rather than 7 subjects per day 

Ella sets up her weekly schedule herself at the beginning of the week. She choose which subjects and what she will complete each day from Monday to Friday. If we know that we have a lot of exciting travels coming up she can choose to have a week off but then make this up the following week. The course is self paced, we need to ensure she ticks all the boxes to get her studies done but there are no set times, we set the times, she sets the times. This means you and your kids can agree on your own schedule and curriculum.

As parents you don’t need to be an expert

Homeschooling kids online packages guide you through the process, in most online cases help is on hand for your kids and for you as a parent and support home schooling teacher. We often sit together to work things out if there are things Ella is not clear on, and if we don’t know how to answer a question, we research together and learn together. Double bonus. Learning is life long. There is nothing that Google can assist with nowadays.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Homeschooling kids is enjoyable and acheiveable. It is a collective adventure. I believe we have gotten so serious about our kids education nowadays that our kids are under too much pressure to achieve academically. There must be a balance in life. I have worked in the allied health profession for many years and see how too much pressure can increase the risks of symptoms of anxiety and or depression, apathy and stress in the kids of today. Remember balance in life is the key, if we tip toward one side something always has to give. Homeschooling your kids can be a welcome reprieve from the constant grind and stressor’s, pressure cooker we can see that is evident today in many of our societies. The need for our kids to over acheive, over commit, do something everyday after school, cram in as much as they can into each day. Where is the time to be a kid? Is there anytime left in your day to allow your kid to just be. ?

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Travelling can be tiring, frustrating and pretty ordinary sometimes. Long days on planes, trains, automobiles can test anyone’s patience. Finding time in your day to nuture yourself is pretty challenging when on the road. So its important especially with family to plan for down days, time out and well-being. If we’re tired and testy, stressed and agitated we are more likely to pick up travel bugs. Avoiding illness when travelling is pretty much something we all should be aiming for right.

Here are some of my top travel tips for travelling well.  

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