What a Typical Worldschooling Day Looks Like in Our Worldschooling Family
Hi friends! I’ve been really interested to see the recent increase in worldschooling families- those families who use travel as a primary method of education. Some of these families live in one place, homeschool and go on lots of individual trips, some are nomadic and some- like us, now- have moved from our original home (the UK) to another country (Bali), and travel from a different base.
What is world schooling?
World schooling is the term use for an education in which travel plays a major part. World schoolers are most often homeschoolers, so kids don’t go to school or have formal education as such. Education comes from experiences- converting currency, visiting temples and pyramids, swimming with ocean wildlife, social experiences with everyone from market stall holders to tour guides- and from 1-1 interaction with parents such as reading together, playing computer games, cooking, arts and crafts and any little projects we have going on.
Why do families world school?
Families world school for any number of reasons. We always wanted to homeschool our children simply because we think it provides a great life and education for children, one free from the stress of exams at a young age and one that allows them freedom to delve deep into subjects that interest them and not be rushed according to someone else’s schedule. We love travel, we think it is a fantastic educational resource and the best way to learn about history, geography, politics, culture, religion and countless other topics. It’s also fun, team-building as a family and provides memorable experiences for us all. Benefits for the parents include better weather (!) and in cheaper countries, a chance to spend more time with the family and working instead of doing housework and cooking, because these things are cheap to buy and save time on.
Families might also world school because of parents’ jobs- if a parent moves around a lot or gets placed in another country, it is a way of keeping the family together. Family gap years are also becoming more popular, and parents might choose to home/ world school for the year to enable them to go on a family gap year.
Is world schooling legal?
Worldschooling is entirely legal for home educating families from the UK. There is nothing to prevent or limit travel for home schooling children. For more information about the legalities of homeschooling, read this post on UK home education law.
A typical worldschooling day for our family
Every day is slightly different- that’s the beauty of world schooling- but if we are at home in our Bali town and I’m not working this is the general gist of our day. (It’s essentially what I imagine a typical ‘summer holiday’ day to be). If I am working it’s exactly the same except I leave for work at a local cafe at 8am and my Mum does the morning with the kids if Patrick has errands or shopping to do.
6.30am. People start to wake up. Usually the toddler flings herself onto my boobs for milk and I wake up. Sometimes I get lucky and she sleeps til 7.30am. There might be a dead frog in my bed like on this day, yay.
7am. We get up, have a cuddle, faff around with tea and juice. Whoever is up (Patrick or I) open the curtains because the sight of sunshine and the pool makes us all happy. We might read a couple of books, or the toddler might have nicked my phone and got onto YouTube. We tidy anything that wasn’t put away last night and look for dead lizards/bugs and sweep them out. Nice.
8am. Patrick goes to get bread from the nearby bakery. The kids have peanut butter and fresh bread or cereal, fruit if we’re feeling virtuous. I chug Diet Coke until I’m fully conscious. We talk about what we want to do today.
9am- 12. We eat, do arts and crafts, read and write, go on apps (examples include Love Balls, Minecraft, Teach My Monster to Read, some obnoxious tweenage makeup app, Roblox, etc) and go in the pool. We look after any animals that we currently have residing with us (since moving to Bali we’ve rescued a kitten, fostered two puppies and are now parents to three baby chickens) and play with them. We also look for bugs, make flower arrangements from the garden, go to the market or shops and play with toys and board games.
12 (ish). Lunch- usually pasta, veg and fruit, sometimes french toast or a local rice-and-something-unrecognisable from a nearby warung (Indonesian food stall) followed by oranges, mangos, bananas and apples. The girls like to cut up the fruit and veg.
1-3 ish. The toddler might have a nap. I work at home while Patrick does “reading lessons” (never has a term been used so loosely) with the girls if they want to- either playing Hangman or doing basic spelling tests (they actually like this) or activities from a workbook if we have them in the house. They also like “maths lessons” where he writes out sums or uses a workbook and they work on them together. Recently they’ve been making a World Cup wall chart and writing in the names of the teams, the scores etc and drawing the flags. Our oldest kid likes to make greetings cards to her boyfriend (every. single. day), signs for her room wall and calendars/ count down charts to events she is looking forward to.
3 ish. We go out. Our outings on chill days like this are usually to the beach or a beach club (a cafe with playground and swimming pool on the beachfront) to meet friends (yes, our homeschooled kids have friends. They are allowed three friends each*). Sometimes we go to a local softplay or a park, or a local cafe where we can easily spend an afternoon playing their huge selection of board games- favourites at the moment are Monopoly, Battleships, Cluedo, Bananagrams and Uno.
7ish. We get home, have dinner, watch TV and play on more apps. Patrick and/or I go to the gym. We read stories to the kids- our younger kids are still enjoying short stories while Esmae likes me to read longer ones like Enid Blyton’s creations.
8ish. The younger two go to bed- I give the toddler milk in bed and she drifts off, then I lie with Eira (the 5 year old) and we listen to music together while she falls asleep.
8-10ish. Esmae does more art- this is her time when she can do what she likes without the younger girls getting in the way. Sometimes Patrick or I will take her out for an ice cream date.
10ish. Esmae is asleep and we faff around on YouTube, finish up work and tidy the apartment.
So that’s a typical world schooling day “at home”. Our other kinds of worldschooling days are day trips- in England we would visit National Trust properties, soft plays, museums, the beach or friends and in Asia we have been to tea and coffee plantations, whale and dolphin watching, beaches, islands, turtle sanctuaries, cat rescue centres, waterfalls, art galleries, theme parks, rice paddies and waterparks. You can read more about our philosophy about education here, which will explain why we don’t follow a curriculum.
*I’m joking, obviously. You might find something of interest in this post about homeschooling and socialisation.