Brody started our adventures blogging his way around the world… sadly he has come to the conclusion that he doesn’t enjoy blogging, so today I want to share one of his more popular posts, updated since he wrote it September 2016!
We Don’t Go to School… We Learn on the Road!
When I first started traveling the world I didn’t know how I was going to learn. When my Mum and Dad said “we’re thinking of taking you out of school to travel” I remember thinking to myself “but I won’t learn anything.” I thought it was a weird idea because if I was at school, there is no way Mum or Dad would let me just take a month off school and not learn anything.
Mum and Dad explained to me that my education would be different. They told me instead of going to school I would learn by using websites, visiting different places and doing things as we traveled. I thought this meant that I would learn by filling out sheets that Mum and Dad would print off. I was wrong. VERY VERY wrong.
As it turns out there are many different ways to learn if you don’t go to school. These are known as world schooling, unschooling or homeschooling. They are all a bit different and different traveling families do different things, so today I’m going to explain the difference and how I learn on the road.
What is world schooling/unschooling?
World Schooling is learning from your day to day life. Instead of school, you learn wherever you are. I really enjoy world schooling because you don’t have to sit down in school and study or do a test or stay in school for 6 1/2 hours.
Instead, I go out and do things, and learn at the same time. For example, I learn history by visiting monuments, churches and historical sites, like the Tower of London, the Berlin Wall, and a Communist Palace in Romania. I learn maths from the different currency conversions in all the countries I visit, by going grocery shopping and comparing prices and by other things that come up during each day. I learn geography from my travel and a cool game I play on Mum’s iPhone called Stack the Countries. And I learn art from classes we’ve taken as we’ve traveled, like Batik Painting (see how we did it here).
What is homeschooling?
Homeschooling is like school but at home. You do the same sort of work that you would at school, but it doesn’t take as long to do because there’s only you.
Some of my learning is a bit like homeschooling. I use online programs like Khan Academy, IXL.com and Maths Online. I practice my writing by creating short stories and learn fun things through Udemy.com.
I don’t think homeschooling is as good as world schooling because with world schooling you get to go out and explore. Homeschooling you have to sit down and do work and sometimes it’s not something you want to do.
How do I learn?
I do a bit of both but mainly world schooling. A couple of times a week we sit and play games on our computers/iPads that have a focus on some subjects. We also watch a lot of really cool documentaries about each country we visit. Before we visited Berlin we watched shows about the Berlin Wall, so when we got there it was cool to be standing where it used to be, and even touching parts that remain.
I use a website called Kahn Academy that is full of different learning activities. You can learn about coding, animation, maths, reading, and you can learn about geography, but because I am travelling around the world I don’t need to learn the geography part of Khan – I learn geography from everyday activity.
I really like world schooling. The biggest difference I’ve found between it and school is the way I get to choose what I learn. In school, you have to do what the teacher tells you. If you want to learn more about something you can’t or if you want to change to a different subject you can’t. With world schooling, you can choose what you learn and when you learn it. If you don’t know much about a subject but you are really interested, you can continue learning about it for as long as you need and you have as much time as you want to learn about that one subject.
I also really like that I get to see things that happened so long ago, in person, when we visit places.
What has been my favorite part!
We have done so much in the past 13 months. My favourite part has been experiencing different cultures in each country that we go to. We’ve learned a lot about different religions and I discovered that every single one is different in lots of ways. I’ve enjoyed trying different cultural activities like the Batik Painting in Malaysia and learning words in lots and lots of different languages. So far we’ve learned words in Thai, Chinese/Mandarin, French, Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian, Danish and Arabic and learning different languages has been one of the best parts. I am learning Spanish at the moment because we are about to go to Mexico and I want to become fluent.
We have visited so many places in the past 13 months including the UAE, UK, France, Spain, Italy, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, China, South Korea, Romania, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, and Norway. I have learned so much about each place we visit and have enjoyed exploring and learning new things.
I love being worldschooled! At first I didn’t think I would learn much, but now I realise I’m learning so much more than I would at school. I would NEVER change what I’m doing and I would choose world schooling over school ANY day.