Like many other homeschool families, we find ourselves spending a large portion of our time getting around to various classes and activities. When we were in our minivan, I was amused by how fitting the term carschooling was. I used to be concerned with things like how to transport school books without getting them all mashed up, packaging manipulatives so they aren’t lost, filling a cooler with food for long days, trying to hear kids reading from the backseat, and typing on my laptop without honking the horn. The limitations and challenges of carschooling are nothing compared to those presented by bikeschooling.
We’re gone several hours most days for extra curricular activities. Fortunately, we’re pretty close to most of them. One of the transitions is interesting. We go from one class to another across town (technically the next town) and only have 45 minutes to get there. With little legs pedaling, we just barely make it.
When leg power instead of horsepower is hauling your stuff around, every ounce and extra bit of bulk counts. When one of my kids starts lagging behind or whining, I usually end up discovering that they packed their backpack as though it were the bottomless Mary Poppins carpet-bag. (Funny how she didn’t seem to strain under the weight…) Of course, they are likely to pack stuffed animals and clothes to the point their zippers are popping teeth, yet they still won’t have a pencil or a jacket. In order to have a happy productive day, everyone needs to have the right gear and supplies, yet not be bogged down by it all. Still, the real trick is making sure they know what things they’re expected to bring, and also that they actually do bring them.
It takes some ingenuity to figure out how to make everything as small and light as possible. Technology is indispensable for this. Digital volumes weigh nothing. Since audio, video, ebooks, documents, and photos offer us more learning opportunities, then it’s well worth my effort to figure out how to incorporate them into our studies. In following posts, I’ll be sharing how I do that.