Turtles, Moss, Walks & Canoes!
Time and time again I hear the sneaky remarks---but what can your kids really learn from feeding a turtle, walking in a park or admiring the beauty of the trees?
Here's the secret: I am not trying to have either of them regurgitate facts from a book (although I do believe testing memory skills is important) or practice a math problem 75 times until he memorizes the answers.
am interested in them finding an answer to a question they have. Why? Because life--is just that. Problem solving. Figuring things out. Adapting.
Not sure how to do something? Ask questions, research, find examples.
Not sure why something is the way it is? Ask questions, research, find examples.
Not sure how to handle a situation? Ask questions, research, find examples.
See the pattern here?
How do I get them to ask questions, research and find examples? Simple: I peak their curiosity.
Why does the baby stay so close the momma? Is it scared? Hungry? Learning? Confused? Lost?
Why is this turtle green, yellow and white but that one has red and orange on it?
Why does this turtle have a short neck, but this one has a extra long neck?
Did you know that Louisiana has moss on trees too? But I hear that the moss is not spreading like it used to. I wonder why?
Did you know that moss spreads from one area of a tree to another? I think.
Do you know why moss is important to trees?
Why is the alligator small?
Where is it's momma?
Will it bite me?
I wonder why alligators aren't as aggressive as crocodiles?
Why is the alligator out today but wasn't yesterday?
My answer: let's find out!!
Why is the nearest high school named Tohopekaliga High School?
Is that a native name?
Were there many native people in this area?
How old is this canoe?
What material is it made out of?
Let's find out!
Why is this rock here?
How heavy is it?
How long has it been here?
See the pattern!
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From Louisiana to Orlando, Part 1
With Justin being in school in Orlando, we plan to travel between home and Orlando regularly. Some months we'll only be able to make it out for 10-12 days, but other months we are hoping to make it out at least twice a month. The beauty of running a business from home and homeschooling the kids is being able to spend time in a new state, explore the area and use this is a wonderful learning opportunity.
The drive is 11 hours with no stops. I know I will stop a minimum of 3 times, making the trip 12 hours if we run into no problems. 3AM wake up call. 4AM on the road. 4PM in Orlando. We know one of the stops is always at Buccees. We stop just outside of Baton Rouge, fill up, stretch our legs and head straight to Buccees in Foley, Alabama. That stretch is 3 1/2 hours and Finn is always ready to get out and gobble up a brisket sandwich. In this picture, she wanted to show her daddy she was eating the same thing he eats when he stops there. Proud as could be!
I usually try to make it to Tallahassee for the next stop. It's 3 hours from Buccees but by this leg of the trip the little girl is ready to get out of her car seat!
Final stop is really dependent on the little girl. Sometimes she's sleeping, other times she wide awake. When she's asleep, we head straight to Kissimmee, when she's awake we go with the flow. I try to make it to Ocala, but by this point, she rules the show.
We spend lots of time outside. We always have a canvas, brush, paint, balls, bubbles, playdoh, colors, markets, coloring books, Barbies and cards handy.
Our first day at the camper is a day we just take it easy. We are all tired from the long drive and need time to decompress, get situated and plan our days ahead. I work early mornings, do school with the kids mid-day/early afternoon and pick a day or two to hit the road to explore while we are in Florida. I really do believe that there is no curriculum, book, test or project that can replace a curious mind.
My favorite non-book learning experience:
We have picnics outside, do our school work and travel work under the pavilions and feed the turtles as many times a day as the little girl's heart desires.
What possibly can we learn from feeding turtles, taking walks and explore the new area!
Picture of this cutie sleeping on her Frozen bed. Because why not?
If you would like to help support our family, consider hiring me to plan your travel!
As a homeschooling mom who found that her children thrived more when living life together instead of being stuck in a classroom 8 hours a day, I turned my love of travel and educating my kids into the perfect mix: unschooling.