Welcome back to day 2 of my Five Days of Homeschooling in the Military series!

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If you have ever moved on the military’s dime, you know how stressful and unsure it can be.  Whether it is a PCS (permanent change of duty station) or just a move to another house, everything is done on their schedule and command.

How can you keep yourself sane while still maintaining some semblance of an education for your kids during a military move?

Jay and I have lived in 7 different states, and several houses in some of those states. Two of those across-country trips happened while we were homeschooling.

The key to surviving during these moves, I believe, was our attitudes about them.  We didn’t see them as a means to an end, or a burden added to our life.

We embraced the moves as adventures themselves.

Focus on family first

If you are travelling with your spouse, think of your move as an opportunity to spend time together as a family.

You will be holed up in small living quarters for a while- either in a hotel or some other temporary dwelling.  Try not to drive everyone insane by insisting that the lesson plans must go on and that everyone is quiet and respectful while you attempt to create order out of chaos.

Sometimes, you just gotta embrace the craziness that is life.

Our last move from Washington state to Kansas was truly one of the best “vacations” we have ever had.  We didn’t do anything except live in an RV at the lake while we found a house.  But, the experience brought us closer together and truly cemented in my mind how much the girls could learn just through exploring the world.

Make experiences on the road worthwhile

If I could get my husband to understand this, we would have an even more peaceful time on our moves than we do now.

He likes to get to wherever we are going.  I always want to stop and see the sights.

But with small children, we compromise.  We stop and explore the areas we can, and skip over the ones that would be too expensive or take up too much of our time.

When you are moving, keep in mind the awesome locations and people you can encounter along the way.  Keep the attitude that everything is a learning opportunity and spread that to your kids.

You might pass by a herd of buffalo in Kansas, and that will spark an interest in the history of the Old West.  Or you might buy a book on mammals for them at the next stop so they can learn that buffalo, oxen, and cows are all related.

You won’t need lesson plans or worksheets because the move itself will become your school. {a very literal interpretation of ‘the world is your classroom’}

Bring the bare minimum

You will be tempted to bring along curriculum and activities for the kids to do during the move and when you are getting settled in.

However, let’s be realistic with ourselves.  How much time and energy are you going to have to do schoolwork while at the same time dealing with movers, emptying boxes, getting used to the area, etc.?

My recommendation is to pack light on the educational stuff.  In fact, before you move is the perfect time to purge all the “great resources” that you bought years ago and have yet to use.

Don’t try to tell  me that homeschooling moms are free from hoarding tendencies.  I have seen the average homeschool bookcase!!!

In fact- I have a book you need to look into:

 Here are a few things you should bring:

  • books to read together
  • a few games
  • simple journal to record learning experiences
  • coloring pages, blank notebooking pages, drawing paper
  • an atlas or map
  • a camera

Have them track your journey, write down and draw interesting things, take pictures, play games, and read!

There is really no reason to bring along the heavy-duty stuff.  You have my permission to take a break and relax- and enjoy exploring the world.

For military homeschoolers, a PCS move is like the equivalent to stopping to smell the roses!

Do your research about your destination

Start finding out what you can about your next station as soon as you know where you are going.  Things you should look into are:

  • what laws you need to follow
  • possible support groups
  • places to get resources
  • state parks, museums, educational opportunities

When you get settled, you will have an idea of ways to start getting connected to the community around you.

I am going to talk more about that in my post tomorrow.

For now, go check out what all the other homeschooling mamas are writing at the Summer Series, Five Days Of. . .

This blog-hop is sponsored by the BEECH retreat– Blogging to Encourage and Equip Christian Homeschoolers.

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4 Responses to Homeschooling During A Military Move

  1. Some of the best times we have had as a family were also when we live in cramped quarters (motel room) or with very little possession at hand (everything we own in storage.) There is just something about so little life clutter and a small family living space that brings you all together, makes you spend time together, and makes you realize what’s truly important to you.

    • Aadel says:

      Life clutter and stuff clutter- I think we each had 4 outfits and 2 pairs of shoes? Jay had more because of work but we were content and at peace- we didn’t need a house full of “stuff”!!!

  2. RedOakLane says:

    I give you so much credit for being able to do this! I think simplicity must be key! I am working on it…

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