26 May 2005

Preparing for a road trip

When we mention that we are about to travel over 3,000 miles with six children across 15 states, the frequent reply is "You're mad!", followed by "How do you do it?"
There are a number of factors we try to take into account. The children don't care too much about museums or historical rocks, unless there is an interesting story attached.
We try to ensure we see at least one interesting thing per day somewhere around lunch time.
Also, we try to find interesting parks or - even better - other homeschooling families to visit. Last time, on our trip to Colorado - we saw many things and places, but the children's highlights were the families we visited.
Whilst in the car we listen to a variety of audiobooks - great stories read by actors who are able to make a book come alive. We have listened to The Hobbit, The Lord of The Rings, The Narnia Series, Around the world in Eighty Days and more. Many of these come from Audible.com and others on CD from Amazon.
We all participate in Travel Spotter which involves getting points for spotting various things on the way - 1 point for a new VW bug, 3 points for a Mini, 1 point for a flashing light, 2 points for a license plate (tag) we haven't counted yet and so on. We keep daily tallies.
The food we eat whilst driving are normally healthy snacks with minimal food colouring. Plenty of water is available and every time we stop everyone goes to the rest rooms.
Each of the children can have two or three toys only - no noise toys of course! They have some card games to play such as Uno, Boomo and so on. The older children have pens and paper. Books aren't encouraged whilst we are on the go because it tends to increase the chance of being car sick.
Other than that, the children have learnt that if they co-operate and treat the trip as an adventure we get to see and do lots of interesting things and meet all sorts of people.

We will be updating Bruggie Tales throughout the trip.

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