Learning on the Road…

The kids have a hands-on experience with the endangered Pallid Sturgeon, at the Garrison Fish Hatchery, in Garrison, ND.

With the start of public and private schools all over the country, we thought we’d take the opportunity to share what learning looks like for Liam and Ella this year while we’re nomadic.

Liam and Ella are studying 6th and 5th grade materials respectively while traveling with us. We started slowly, in early August, with purposefully tasking the kids with age-appropriate learning. People have asked us what we’re using for curriculum/learning materials. This is not a quick answer! 🙂 We are using Life of Fred and Saxon books for math, and are using some materials online from Khan Academy in order to ensure the kids meet Common Core math standards. We are also using some grammar workbooks, which the kids don’t love, but help them learn tough grammar concepts. Do you know what the plural of oasis is (without looking it up)? Neither did we as parents! A learning moment for all of us right there!

For other subjects (reading, social studies, writing, and science), we are using Michigan education standards for their grade levels and creating our own lessons based on materials that are available, local resources/programs, and kid-driven ideas. There are so many local resources that sometimes we have a difficult time choosing our outings! Pictures really do a great job illustrating some of the cool learning that travel has allowed us, so take a peek at some of the great educational moments we’ve experienced in the last month and a half of our travels!

Liam and Ella learn about life in a Hidatsa village while working together on a scavenger hunt at the North Dakota Heritage Center and Museum in Bismarck.
Learning about the Old West with “Wild Bill Hickock” and “Jack McCall” in Deadwood, SD. This show reminded us all that learning via The Arts can be dynamic and engaging!
Examining solar power and circuitry in a relaxed pace, thanks to Jason’s foresight in packing!
Discovering air pressure with a homemade barometer as we descended the Bighorn Mountains.
Learning about contour lines and measuring distance on a topographical map in Yellowstone National Park, with Pete Sweger, park ranger extraordinaire!

The kids are learning quite a bit. Is it easy every day? Nope! We sometimes grapple with maintaining a consistent schedule, due to travel days and local learning opportunities sometimes conflicting with optimal learning times. We’re also struggling because one of our learners is self-motivated and the other takes a LOT of prodding, even with assignments of choice. Despite this, we continue to feel that the opportunities we are fortunate to have on the road outweigh the challenging moments. Jason and I keep learning new things as well on the road, which also makes us appreciate the vast amount of lifetime learning that can be done, with only a little bit MORE TIME!

8 Comments on “Learning on the Road…”

  1. Looks like a great adventure, learning and making memories together.
    Miss seeing you! You Will never regret your family time together on the road
    Love Aileen