Homeschooling in an RV can be an incredible way to see the country and do school simultaneously. With the massive growth in online learning in recent years, many families are taking their classrooms on the road. However, before you toss your school supplies in the RV, there are a few things you should know. Let’s get started!
What Is Homeschooling?
Homeschooling is a non-traditional way of educating children. There are many different options for homeschooling but the overall concept is the same. This typically involves a parent or guardian being the primary facilitator for educational lessons, but not always. This is a popular choice for those looking to have more control of their child’s education.
The increased control of lessons and school subjects can allow parents to cater lessons and subjects to a student’s strengths or areas of interest. A student who shows heavy interest in science or social studies can spend more time on these subjects than a public school might provide.
Can You Really Homeschool in an RV?
When you travel the country in an RV, your rig is your home. Many states are more concerned about the curriculum you’re using and how often you’re doing school than they are with how many axles your home has or doesn’t have.
However, it’s important to note that homeschool laws vary from state to state. Don’t worry; you don’t have to know the laws for every state you visit. You only need to know and follow the rules and regulations of your resident state.
Homeschooling in an RV can provide opportunities for hands-on learning that wouldn’t have been possible in a traditional school setting. For students who learn by seeing and doing, homeschooling on the road can be a great option.
Is It Legal to Homeschool in an RV?
No state outright restricts homeschooling in an RV. The rules and regulations vary widely from state to state. It’s important to know the homeschool laws for your specific state. Homeschooling while RVing across the country is legal but does require a bit of research to learn the requirements.
The Benefits of Homeschooling in an RV
When homeschooling in an RV, you can adapt your lessons or travels to create a richer learning environment. If you’re learning about the history of our country or government, a trip to Washington D.C. can bring the lessons to life. Instead of looking at pictures of the Washington Monument or the White House, your family can see these iconic locations in person.
When you move your classroom around the country, it also gives you the chance to do school in some pretty epic locations. While others may see an open field in a National Park as an excellent place for a picnic, your family can make that field your classroom for the day.
What Are the Drawbacks?
While it sounds like an exciting adventure to do school on the road, it’s not always easy. The thought of still needing to get school done after a long travel day can be stressful. You’ll have days where neither you as a parent nor your kids as students want to do school. You may be tired from a hike or just not feeling it that day. This means you’ll have to muster the energy and motivation to get going or risk falling behind.
Having a mobile classroom can be difficult for students and families who like stability. RVing can be incredibly unstable at times. It’s hard to keep a consistent schedule. It may take some adjusting or flexibility to make the lifestyle and learning mesh well for your family.
What You Need to Know About Homeschooling in an RV
We have a handful of things that you need to know about homeschooling in an RV. These can help you know if this style of schooling is suitable for your family.
It Doesn’t Have to Look the Same as Traditional School
Don’t feel the pressure to replicate the look and feel of a traditional school experience. You’re likely choosing the lifestyle to provide a different experience than traditional schools provide.
Cut yourself some slack and embrace the flexibility that homeschooling in an RV can provide. Make school exciting by finding interesting locations. Not every lesson has to happen inside your RV. A scene change can enhance some lessons.
Plan for an Adjustment Period in the Beginning
Homeschooling and traditional school are quite different approaches to education. However, taking the classroom on the road requires even more of an adjustment. This transition can be a bit overwhelming, especially if you transition from traditional schooling straight into homeschooling in an RV.
If you go into the adventure expecting an adjustment period, you’ll be able to handle the bumps in the road. It can be frustrating at first but stick with it. Some of the best things in life aren’t easy at first.
One of the advantages of homeschooling is flexibility. When you’re homeschooling in an RV, flexibility is essential. There will be days where travel days take longer than expected, or the weather doesn’t cooperate. Being able to adapt to unexpected circumstances easily can help ensure a smoother learning experience.
If you find that something about your lesson or activity isn’t going as planned, pivot. Find a way to change the lesson or experience to get the most out of it that you can. If you need to abandon the lesson altogether and return to it later, do what you have to do.
Use Travel as a Learning Experience
Your travels can be the cornerstones of a phenomenal learning experience. Using your travels as learning experiences allows your students to have a richer and deeper understanding of the material. Whether you’re planning your travels around your lessons or your lessons around your travels, it’s an excellent approach to learning.
Having hands-on learning experiences for your children can be much more impactful than reading it in a book. You may find that your travels naturally create learning opportunities as you visit historical places and learn about new locations.
Connect with Other RV Families Who Homeschool
We can’t understate the importance of community when it comes to homeschooling in an RV. Because you’re likely going to be traveling, you’re not going to see the same people. Being part of an online community or organization of other full-time RV families is a great way to connect with other like-minded families. Be sure to check out our Beginner’s Guide to RV Living with Kids for more information.
Is Homeschooling in an RV Worth It?
When it comes to education, it’s really hard to top homeschooling in an RV. The life lessons and educational opportunities are practically limitless. If you have the opportunity to do it, it can be an incredibly fulfilling learning environment for everyone in your family. What is one place you would have wanted to visit as a kid for an educational experience?