What is Worldschooling?
Beyond the Classroom: Hello, World School
Worldschooling, sometimes referred to as world schooling, roadschooling, or travel-based education or unschooling, is a way of educating a child through travel and learning outside of four classroom walls. Accordingly, it is an alternative to mainstream classroom schooling.
Homeschooling While Traveling Abroad
Worldschooling is arguably its own branch or subset of homeschooling (or home education). However, learning often takes place well beyond the home. Worldschooling educates a child through travel experiences.
Think of it as education that flows from world and cultural interactions and experiences that are beyond the home or immediate community.
Ultimately, worldschooling is a unique approach to learning. It is an approach where learning happens naturally and organically. Learning is guided by travel and influenced by a child’s interests (think unschooling). To learn more about unschooling or interest-lead learning, check out What is Unschooling.
Worldschooling is real world learning. Living and learning in the real world and in real time.
The Advantages and Benefits of Worldschooling
As an alternative form to mainstream classroom education, world school education offers incredible advantages, benefits, and opportunities for both child and parent(s). Some of these advantages of world schooling include:
- Travel Lifestyle.
- Extended family time together.
- Close knit family relationships.
- Often advanced communication skills (from living and traveling closely with others).
- Learning that never stops.
- Real world learning.
- Learn about the world.
- Hands on learning and exposure to academic subjects and topics close up/beyond books. For example, teens might learn about WWII by visiting a concentration camp or Anne Frank’s House.
- Children acquire global and culturally diverse perspectives, or different ways of looking at the world.
- Flexibility! No set schedule. No rigid scheduling rules.
- Children learn anywhere and everywhere.
- Pursuit of individual interests, passions, and talents.
- Increased opportunities to spend time outside, such as hiking or exploring National Parks.
- Cheaper travel. No school schedules to adhere to. Travel when can seize travel bargains.
- Work, live, and play anywhere.
- Social opportunities.
- Live abroad, learn languages, meet new friends, and gain new opportunities for the whole family.
- Globetrotter, jet setter lifestyle, or settled expatriate life with a home base.
- World school can be full-time, part-time, or “trip based” so it can fit work schedules and locations.
- Top-notch education, access to international resources.
- Opportunities to enroll children in local or international schools while abroad.
- The world at your child’s fingertips.
The Decision to World School – How to World School
Families who choose to world school, may travel full-time, part of the year, seasonally, or during shorter breaks during the year. For example, some families world school ,during parent work holidays or vacations.
Families who choose to world school are often referred to as worldschoolers. These families recognize that The World is Our Classroom.
For the past 10+ years, I have worldschooled, roadschooled, and unschooled my four children. So, my children and I have come to think of the collective experience as Wanderschooling. To us, that’s a traveling, experiential, and worldly educational experience. This learning experience includes epic experiences, like our whirlwind 50 States Tour of the USA. It also includes wild journeys and destinations. Not to mention happy retreats back to the comfort and familiarity of our home base.
What Do You Need to Worldschool?
There is no one way to worldschool. Just as there is no one way to homeschool. Every family is different. And every family has a different work, financial, and personal situation.
Every family has its own goals, dreams, or objectives in choosing to worldschool. And each family takes its own approach to making it happen.
To world school, there are a few things you will need. These will vary depending on how long you plan to adopt this lifestyle and educational choice.
- A desire to travel. In two parent households, this doesn’t necessarily mean that both parents must desire to travel. However, if they are going to travel altogether as a family, there needs to be open, honest, and good communication from the beginning. This must include transparent communication about the plan and foreseeable moving parts associated with worldschooling.
- A desire to want to welcome the world as the child’s classroom. Worldschooling is an incredible educational and lasting gift.
- A willingness to step outside of the comfort zone. Worldschooling involves keeping an open-mind as you encounter different people, cultures, ways of thinking, and new environments.
How To Afford Worldschooling
The decision to worldschool and pursue a travel lifestyle is exciting. It’s also intimidating to most.
There are a lot of unknowns when you travel full-time, part-time, or for big chunks of time. This unknowns might include: Where to go. Logistics. Where to stay. Language barriers. Cultural differences. Local or state school requirements. Duration.
Money. Regardless of the amount of pre-planning involved, money and costs are among the unknowns. But these unknowns are also part of the thrill of the lifetime adventure.
To afford worldschooling, some families opt to sell everything they own. Alternatively, some put all of their belongings into storage. Then they AirBNB their home for income while abroad.
Other families save for months or years. Some families come up with side hustles.
Some families create detailed budget spreadsheets. Others wing it.
Still others find flexible, remote work opportunities, and enjoy life as a worldschooling digital nomad. And some find house swaps or family volunteer-work opportunities that offer housing and food in exchange for service.
There are creative ways to afford worldschooling and a travel lifestyle. Motivation is key, and worldschooling is a powerful motivator.
How Do You Start Worldschooling?
Start! Begin your worldschooling adventure by reading anything and everything you can about worldschooling. Read blogs like Wanderschool. Read any book you can find on world school, road school, or off-the-beaten path education. Join online world schooling groups. You can find a bunch on Facebook.
Then come up with a plan.
I am someone who likes to come up with a general, broad travel plan, but I make up the day-to-day plans as I go. I guess you’d call that winging it, and so far so good. I’ve been known to make my best plans in the middle of the night, like the decision to buy an RV.
If you choose a worldschooling adventure, it may just become one of the best experiences of your life! And, I’d love to hear about it. Follow me on Instagram and connect.
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Are you thinking about worldschooling? Already worldschooling? What is the one thing that holds you back? What is the one thing that inspires you to keep going?