In my previous post What Is Roadschooling, I describe the ins and outs of what Roadschooling entails. My family and I are in the early planning stages of Roadschooling, and my last post 5 Details To Consider Before Roadschooling discusses specific aspects of Roadschooling to ponder before you start. While we are having family discussions and contemplating the idea of Roadschooling we have also begun to trial it by taking day trips. Our last road trip took us to Hocking Hills Ohio which I shared our experience here: Roadschooling: Hiking At Hocking Hills. If you are interested in destination based learning and are curious on how to turn this into a lesson, keep reading and I’ll share our lesson plan with you.
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Charlotte Mason And Destination Based Learning
I largely follow a Charlotte Mason philosophy of education which doesn’t suggest to go traveling across the Country to learn. However, It is rooted in using Living books instead of textbooks and advocates for lots of outside time observing a living science through nature studies. For each day trip destination I plan to influence my children’s learning from a Charlotte Mason perspective. I’ll be sharing our Charlotte Mason influence lesson plans through my Roadshooling articles.
Geology-the study of earth and all its structures. Hocking Hills is filled with a living science opportunity and provides a outstanding lesson in geology. The hills are filled with shale, limestone, coal, and conglomerate rocks. My children spent a great deal of time exploring and finding various kinds of rocks and asking me what kind of rock it is. In a Charlotte Mason Education you don’t badger your children with questions rather you wait until they are asking on their own and provide them with the answer once it is asked. From a homeschool moms perspective this aspect really internalizes the learning process.
My oldest brought her Nature Diary. If your children keep a nature journal too, I highly suggest bringing them on such a trip. My oldest chose Old Man’s Cave as her nature study. She observed and noted the massive moss covered black sandstone jutting out around the edges of the Cave, the waterfall, and this large tree that had fallen down across the pebbled river bank. On a personal note, it was heartwarming to be present and be able to watch my daughter become so engrossed and deeply interested in her nature study.
I knew once we were home my kids would be on a active search on what they could learn about caves and geology. I was right, so I had these living books ready and waiting at home:
These books are written by a creation scientist and are remarkable at teaching the facts of a living science. My little guy is still learning informally, so his “lesson” was in the experience and from us telling stories (which we derived from the above living books) about what we had all experienced together.
The book description for The Geology Book rates this at age 8 or up reading level. For my oldest, we only read the section that covered the rocks that we discovered (which the geology book covered) and the section about Caves (which the cave book covered). If you have slightly older children this would be perfect for them to read on their own.
I will be honest, this was a vigorous work out for me. If you have young children expect to be carrying them some of the time or if you baby/toddler wear-bring your ergo (lol). However, right on the edges of the trail, large tree roots are exposed begging to be climbed on. My children loved to turn the roots into a natural jungle gym. Can you see your children doing the same?
If your wanting to give Destination Based learning a try, begin with Hocking Hills. Remember your nature journals, grab The Cave book and The Geology Book to support your child’s living science learning. If this Destination is too far for you, sign up for my newsletter to receive updates on new destinations.