“I would love to travel school, but how do you survive living in such a small space? How do you keep from losing your mind? What do you do with all of your learning stuff?” How do you make sure your child is not falling behind? These are the questions heard from so many travel-loving families who desperately want to see the world with their kids but can’t quite figure out what it looks like without all of their stuff and the big indoor spaces to which they’ve grown accustomed.
And every time these questions come up, the same reply returns, “You have to simplify.”
Simplifying your space, belongings and education program is the key to enjoyable travel. So, here are six tips to help you simplify for small space living:
Regularly Give Away Things That Aren’t Your Favourite
Getting ready to live in a small space means you’ll only have room for your very favourite things, so you’ll have to leave behind the rest. In most cases, it will be about packing only what you really need. You may even find that what you really need when you are on the road will be far less than you thought.
Trade Out Your Favourite Supplies Regularly – Books, Art Supplies, Cloths, Décor, Toys…Everything
Even when you choose your “travelling” belongings, chances are you will still have too much stuff to live in a small space. So, instead of trying to cram everything in drawers and closets like we tend to do in a large home, when you’re traveling a lot and living in a small space, it’s essential that you trade things out once or twice a year. Not only will this save you heaps of time and money, but every single time you switch supplies and start pulling out toys, books, and art supplies you haven’t seen in a while, it can feel like Christmas for the whole family.
When it comes to Homeschool supplies. This will alter depending on your child’s Grade level and interests. For young students, a container with basic Art supplies will be vital. The great thing is that the Euka program is adaptable. If the activity says that painting is the lesson, adapt it to coloured markers or skip over the activity and come back to it when you are settled in a caravan park.
Declutter Daily to Make Your Small Space Homey
Once you’re living with only your favourite things, you will have more space in your travelling home, but you’ll still need to declutter daily to make sure you don’t lose your cool. This means daily clearing away papers, garbage, toys, books, and anything else you’ve used, finding a place for everything, and putting it in that place every day. While this is a natural way of life for some, most of us can get by without having to declutter daily in a large home, but if you’re going to live in a small space for a while, it should become your daily habit quickly – for sanity’s sake. Besides, living with only a few great things means so much more when you can actually find them. Get the kids into the habit of cleaning up their school resources as soon as they are done. That is a habit you will be thrilled to take home with you.
No matter how much you want to travel school or how much fun you’ll have seeing mountains, oceans, national parks, and famous landmarks with your family, someone in your home may start to feel put out from time to time without all the comforts of home. One child may want to display his 10 favourite Lego builds while the other wants to have a place for 15 baby dolls and all of their clothes. In these moments, it’s essential that the whole family gets creative. Ask every family member what he or she needs and make a plan to make it happen in a new, creative way together. Take turns putting out the toys each child wants, make a plan for that favourite chess set, and come up with unique hanging storage or cool under-the-bed options for easy access. The possibilities are endless. School achievements can be photographed to save you from having to lug around large masses of completed activity sheets. Have a folder to save only the most special work and work samples.
Whatever you do, don’t forget why you’re travel schooling in the first place – to see things you’ve never seen before – so, get outdoors and see them! Open up the door and get them outside on their bikes, huddled around a campfire, or exploring in the woods. Take a hike, have tea outside with a friend, eat all of your meals on a picnic table, and have the kids take their laptop out to the hammock and type away! Your living space increases exponentially when you consider how big your temporary backyard is.
Get Advice from Experts
There is no greater source of valuable advice than that provided by others doing the same thing. Jump online and visit “Travelling Australia with Kids”. Not only will you gain a wealth of information but the Facebook page allows you to connect with other parents from all States that are fulfilling their travel dreams.