Homeschooling Out of the Country Questions

by khadija
(fort worth , tx ,usa)

Concerned mom asks if she can homeschool her kindergarten daughter and follow an American program while visiting another country?


My daughter is 6 years old and she is now in kindergarten and we are leaving America for a while. Is it possible for me to homeschool her following American academic programs or not? How can I start doing so? I live in Texas - Fort Worth. My husband will still stay in America. I would really appreciate it if you answered my questions. Thank you.

Hi Khadija!
A couple factors to consider: your daughter's citizenship, what country you are going to and how long you are leaving for. If you are American citizens and just visiting another country, you should be fine.

Many American homeschooling families travel extensively, or leave the country for a few months time to visit family members in other countries. A few of my friends do and they take their school work with them. They are American citizens, though; I don't know how it works for citizens of other countries.

You could purchase materials before you leave and pack what you will need for the length of time you will be away. A lot of programs can be accessed online too. (A free online homeschooling program is The Head of The Class; currently you can find complete grade materials for PreK-6.)

Since your daughter is so young, you could focus on the basics - reading, writing and arithmetic and then use the time away in another country to create a wonderful hands-on learning experience. I'm sure there are going to be a lot of things to learn about and see that you can't find in the US; different plants, animals, insects, food, etc.

Education just doesn't come through books or worksheets - bring your daughter with you wherever you go. To visit family, special landmarks, or other places of interest in the country where you are going.

You will also find a lot of free fun, hands-on activities at homeschoolshare.com. Your daughter may enjoy lapbooking and you can find some great units - some may be for the exact place you are visiting. You would need access to a printer, paper, scissors and glue while you are gone.

Depending how long you are leaving, you could create a some weekly unit studies - print out everything and use large envelopes to put the work in for each lapbook or unit study. This is a more cumbersome idea for travel, but if you are going to a home with modern conveniences and will set aside time for school each day, it would be fun.

Other website visitors who have homeschooled out-of-country may provide additional help and guidance for you.

Enjoy your time away!
Blessings,
Heather

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May 17, 2011
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great question
by: Mrs. Dani

I am blessed enough to be able to travel across the country due to my husband's job, so I know the pressures of trying to homeschool from a hotel room for months at a time.

You have a unique challange; traveling outside the country.

There are several factors you must consider:
1- are both of you American Citizens
2- laws where you live in America
3- how long you will be gone
etc, the list goes on and on.

I STRONGLY suggest you contact the HomeSchool Legal Defense Association (www.hslda.org) The membership fees run around $10 a month. WELL worth the money. I call them everytime I travel to another state for more than a month's time. They can give you the legal advice and more importantly the peace of mind you will need.

That being said, anywhere you travel will generally have a wealth of history & science opportunities. I would pack light. I generally pack for each child the following work books; Bible Study (and Bible), language arts, and arithmetic. Thats it. I do not even bother with teacher's manuels. I take a plain lined notebook and on each page write what we did that day and that is my lesson book. If you wait until the end of the trip to write everything down, you will forget stuff...trust me.

But with a child in kindergarden, all you need is some first start reading books (light and small), and I would write down some things in a note that a kindergardener would need to know in math. You do not need to pack anything. You can learn to count by twos from candy anywhere you go. Be creative! My child learned how to write in cursive in a garden and learned about subtraction from tadpoles in a pond! PS make sure you take the mechanical pencils, pencil sharpeners can be hard to travel with. That and crayons and a notebook of paper is all you need!

And relax! See the sights! THere is sooo much to learn from traveling;not to mention the musuems and zoos. Do not think, "Oh, they are too young to see this," GO! As a public school teacher in my church (who was not all supportive on homeschooling) said, "Traveling is the best education a child can get"

Enjoy this incredible opportunity. Pack light and ohhh and pictures, take LOTS of pictures!

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