Friday, November 20, 2009

Trip schooling

This last week we had a pretty nontraditional week, especially for us. We took a quick trip down south to Omaha (nine + hours south of us) to see some family.
While there we visited the Henry Doorly Zoo. I have to say- I've been to a lot of zoos but this really blew me away. It's clean, well organized- and almost all the exhibits were indoors! What a neat treat for those of us in colder, northern areas. The indoor desert was awesome- it took well over ninety minutes to get through and that was with us rushing at the end. The kids loved the huge aquarium, especially the jelly fish. I highly suggest this zoo if you are ever in the Omaha region. I don't think you will be disappointed if there is a zoo lover with you.
We also made it to the Omaha Children's Museum. In my experience with children's museums there are two main types- older elementary ones with complicated experiments, lots of information, and lots of stuff to see; and the second- the younger geared ones with tons of hands on activities, things to climb on, and experimental play opportunities. The Omaha Children's Museum is of the second set. This made it perfect for both the five year old and the two year old, and the parents and grandparents seemed to have a pretty good time, too. Highlights were a room full of plastic balls that you put through different machines and then they would rain from the ceiling and a large water table. Also of interest in this flu season for the germ-concious among us- lots of sinks and hand sanitizer stations. Perfect!
I make the choice that when there is something else big going on like a trip to let most bookwork go to the side. I know some people are really good at still doing school in a hotel room and that may be necessary at some (hopefully distant) future point. We did practice skip counting in the car- it's the first time that I've really gone over that with Sweet Pea so I was pleasantly surprised to see that she's really good with 10s and 2s, and after some work with her father seemed to also get 5s pretty well. So that's good to know!
Today we also took it pretty easy. Sweet Pea did a phonics review and then a lesson. We also read a Little Bear book together.
She also did a lesson in Earlybird 2B. It was the first one on subtraction, and after a brief explanation she was able to complete all the pages by herself. Also good!
We've had a great week and had fun things that we don't normally- now back to the grind this next week!


  1. Recently when we've been on short trips (like into town 7 miles away), I've played the Prima Latina CD lesson on the way there and the Sing the Faith CD (catechism) on the way home. It makes the trip go faster and accomplishes a little school work on the way too.
    I've never been to the Omaha zoo but it is highly recommended for one of the best in the country.
    I think we all need a little education time that isn't traditional-both as parents and students. If they were in a traditional school, there would be several field trips every year. We enjoyed our few days to St. Cloud, especially the history museum in September-we didn't do traditional school work those days either. I know they learn more in one day at the zoo or museum than one day of traditional homeschool. This is especially true for us because we live so far away from these educational opportunities that we don't go very often.

  2. While I love the car for memory work, podcasts, and other audio learning activities :), I've never been off the school that suggests bringing any significant amount of work on a trip. In fact, that's why we have schoolwork to do two days this week - we went to Destin back around Labor Day, and did just three days of school that week as a result. I like to think we'll be able to keep up the routine of not taking schoolwork at least until high school.



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