This week we’re Roadschooling in Santa Cruz County. Truth be told, we’ve been spending a bunch of time on the beaches, but I have to admit that my kids are learning so much by just being out in the world.
We’ve encountered dead birds and jellyfish, gone tidepooling to find live sea creatures. We’ve timed waves as we bodysurfed, constructed elaborate engineering feats out of sand, and even studied how sand is formed. We hunted for river stones and shells at a sweet little beach and then sorted them by color. We tested buoyancy by throwing natural objects into a creek. We planted seeds in our friends’ backyard. And we even experimented with physics by going on roller coasters on the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. We’ve hiked through redwood forests, located families of potato bugs, and even did fractions with basketball standings during March Madness.
When I think about the ways my kids are experiencing the world by getting out into nature and not sitting in a classroom, I wonder why more of us don’t take the time to do this.
Yesterday we were at the beach and met a sweet family with two kids (6 and 4). The mom said, “I don’t know how you go out with just the kids by yourself.”
I looked at her and asked, “How do you stay home?”
Sure going on the road with my kids is hard. I work after they are asleep late into the night. I am exhausted most of the time. But I want them to have the gifts of seeing the world with wonder for as long as they possibly can. And the only way I can teach them that is if I show them that I still see the world as an exciting and educational place.
Isn’t that what living is all about?