How to homeschool in an RV? Stop buying tons of curriculum, books, manipulative, and teacher-oriented lesson plans. MiniMize and simplify! Make a simple homeschool.
A Simple Homeschool
This works regardless of lifestyle, the design of your home, or any other factor in life. But RV living requires more attention to detail and lots of homeschool organization ideas. You’ll need a whole lot more minimization of material possessions than most other lifestyles.
Hold Your Head High
Even if you aren’t really aiming to create an actual minimalist homeschool …
Of course, I would be interested in this topic.
Having less crap is something to be proud of, so hold your head high!
Tons of Supplies Doesn’t Equal a Simple Homeschool
Let’s face it, our homeschool supplies can take up a ton of space in the classroom.
The living room in our old house was loaded with binders, books, arts and crafts, and manipulative
Be honest, how many times have you used those counting chips and pretend clocks?
We didn’t have a truly simple homeschool, though at the time I was trying my hardest to accomplish one.
A Ton of Stuff
A ton of books are unnecessary.
It was a ton of “stuff” that I never even remembered to incorporate into our daily schedules.
Those curriculum catalogs called to me and I got a bit fancy.
I bought more and more, added more and more, and became more and more overwhelmed.
We don’t have room for fancy.
Here’s a tip: fancy + school = square footage
A Shocking Verdict: We Didn’t Have a Simple Homeschool
When we decided on an RV lifestyle, we looked around trying to decide what we needed to keep or donate.
The verdict was shocking.
My kids needed pencils, paper, an eReader loaded with books, and maybe some art and music supplies for fun.
The rest was unnecessary.
We didn’t need the books I had printed and bound, nor the ones I bought.
And if we didn’t need those, we didn’t need the big ol’ bookshelves either.
The binders of worksheets I printed and organized to use each step of the way until graduation could go, too.
A shocking statement coming from someone peddling worksheets, huh?
Did I need Anything?
Even the kids’ collection of finished work was unnecessary.
We realized there was a simple way to reduce to this clutter.
I bet you know what I’m about to say …
Drum Roll, Please
Oh! The cloud!
That fluffy, dreamy, wisp of air that could replace all the heavy, stuffy paper.
I began to imagine Word documents and PDF’s galore!
This minimalist homeschool stuff was suddenly becoming a turn on.
The thought was even more delicious than the idea of using my RV walls to store kitchen gizmos.
Making It Work
To make it work, I had to realize that:
- My books were just as valuable in a digital format (I get a bit sentimental about my books), and
- Any paper produced during the learning process could be scanned, saved, and thrown in the campfire.
The First Thing You’ll Need for a Simple Homeschool:
You need a few things, but one of them takes the cake.
If you live on the road, find a provider that can turn your rig into a hotspot.
For those of you that have a stationary house or apartment, just go with a regular broadband connection.
You’ll be using the internet for nearly everything.
A Few More Things for the Simple Homeschool
Now for a few more things you’ll need in your simple homeschool.
Of course, you probably already have an email account.
If you don’t … might I suggest you rectify that now?
It’s been a thing for about 30 years; and it’s time, man. Try a free one with Yahoo! or Gmail.
Laptop, Tablet, or Phone
We use all three of these.
Laptops or tablets for the kids to read books and write Word documents on.
iPhones and laptops for us to keep track of it all (and write this kind of stuff, too).
If you stick to only a phone, make sure it allows you to create digital content and get online.
This is why we prefer iPhones; they’re like a pocket size computer.
A scanning app will allow you to take a picture, turn it into a PDF, and email it to yourself
This is invaluable in a minimalist homeschool
A bulky piece of equipment taking up real estate in your living quarters isn’t very simple.
The Best Things About Scanning Apps
You can get one on your phone for free!
This app will minimize the random balls of trash and binders full of papers you will never look at again.
Not to mention, the kids love the idea of throwing their schoolwork into a fire pit.
BTW, we scan our bills and burn those papers, too. It’s very cathartic.
Magic in the Simple Homeschool
Be a magician and make stuff appear out of thin air. Even better, make them disappear into thin air!
I’m for real.
You’re going to need this as your digital filing cabinet.
Instead of thumb drives or CDs that take up space and can get lost or broken, use the cloud.
I’m betting that if you’ve bought a new computer or laptop in the past couple of years you already have a cloud.
iCloud (a Mac/Apple product) and OneDrive (Microsoft) are two of the most popular brands of clouds.
I bet you could create something magical in the cloud.
A MiniMize Tip
Also, if you consider MS Office, below, get the Office 365 version.
It comes with a cloud included!
Create More Magic
Turn your student into a whiz kid.
Incorporate Microsoft applications to their repertoire.
Word and Excel are the tools we use to replace pens, pencils, paper, and ledgers.
PowerPoint is just a cool way to present it all.
Believe me, you will use this to keep track of your simple homeschool stuff.
And your kids need to learn to use these tools.
Simple Homeschool Supplies
This is not where you scrimp on homeschool supplies.
If you get this Office 365 version , you’ll receive everything plus the cloud.
It’s how you perform stunts, and how you get worksheets.
Even more, it’s how you create.
Impressive acrobatics without the use of fancy technology.
Acrobat is free to download, and nearly all the free stuff you’ll be accumulating online will come in PDF form.
There’s no reason not to get this basic tool.
Now, if you want to be a little fancier (like me) you can upgrade Acrobat to Adobe Acrobat DC.
This will let you create, combine, and edit PDF’s.
The Most Helpful Part of a Simple Homeschool
All of this is great, but without this next thing you’ll be dead in the water.
You’re going use it to store and read digital books.
I like the Kindle because my books are automatically stored for free by Amazon.
And I can save my PDF’s as a book in my Kindle Library.
The Bonus Stuff
Plus, I can get a Kindle device or an app for my phone or laptop.
It just makes everything easier on me when everything is done in the same place.
Especially when you consider we use Amazon to shop, store digital photos, listen to music, and watch TV, as well.
The Funnest Part of the Simple Homeschool
Kids love it; parents love it more.
The Fire Pit
Get rid of those school papers cluttering everything.
A campfire works nicely for this.
Or use a trashcan. If you prefer not to play with fire, just don’t set it ablaze.
Most Important Part of a Simple Homeschool
The most important part of a simple homeschool is you.
Yes, I know most people would say it’s your student.
But without your awesomeness, that kid would be stuck in a desk at the public school.
MiniMize and simplify!
Can you think of a way to make a simple homeschool even better? Does anything seem too complicated? Let us know, below!
Want more? Read our article on the best places to find FREE e Books!