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Could YOU homeschool K-8 out of one carry-on suitcase?


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#51 Amy Jo

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 10:16 AM

Hmmm - without electricity, I think the Bible (probably KJV), Beechick's K-3 and 4-8 books for a scope & sequence, Handbook of Nature Study, CHOW, and the Jr. Classics set. Fill the rest with paper and pencils. And the inflatable globe. Next priorities would be science (BFSU set, unless I could find something smaller) and maybe Practical Arithmetic for math work. The whole list would be 21 books (15 w/o BFSU & PA) and I'm not sure that would fit.

With electricity I'd probably just buy an iPad, and take my eReader. So the question isn't as fun if you have electricity, since you can get almost anything as a PDF. Even though I prefer hardcopies as well - I still don't trust computers.

#52 Hunter

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:27 PM

Technology is hard to rely on, especially when in unfamiliar environments, and with a reduced number of tech devices. When one multipurpose item gets used a lot, and then goes down, you are crippled. And if you used that device to support other devices that were dependent on it, then it gets even worse.

The electricity conserving kindles need to be supported by a laptop. The Kindle Fire is the most road hardy device, because it is self supporting in the vast majority of circumstances. It drains the battery fairly quickly though, compared to the other kindles. The screen is fine for reading Kindle books, but barely adequate for many pdfs. The solar charger is a good idea for the Kindles. Once loaded and IF nothing goes wrong, the energy conserving Kindles should be readable for years with no upkeep other charging.

Also when in certain environments, it's not always safe or polite to be flashing around expensive devices. This has been a big issue for me at times.

Also when it comes to traveling with critical bags. Do NOT pack by weight and type of items. Pack by how critical the items are to your survival and comfort. Rate the bags by priority. Place the most critical items in the bags you can protect the easiest. If you need to shift items from one bag to another and fear letting people see your expensive tech devices, take the bags into a bathroom stall. This sounds like I should have known this, but I got caught in a situation where I had packed wrong, had to think fast, and just couldn't. I froze, and there were nasty repercussions. If I had just packed differently or known to immediately flee to a bathroom to repack, things would have turned out differently. I don't think I would have even lost my least critical bag, but would have been free to put it at risk, giving me more options to secure myself and my more critical belongings.

Technology becomes quite unreliable when you are in a tight situation. And it becomes outdated and incompatible very quickly. The only tech I feel confident depending on is my cell phone that is insured with the carrier, and my Kindle ebooks that are stored at Amazon. I feel semi-confident depending on a Kindle Fire. My phone has card in it that I can save most critical pdfs on, that I can then email to my Kindle at a hot spot to reload it.

I traded my iPad away because It was too reliant on a well maintained and steady laptop with wifi hookup, which I can't seem to provide. Even not on the move, and in a fairly stable environment I struggled to maintain my iPad.

A few documents can be mailed to your Kindle, and then seem to be stored in your account, and available to then download to any of your devices. I don't know how dependable that is going to be long term.

Tech as a supplement is great, but it's risky as the core. And completely undoable with certain audiences present.

The hard thing about big moves is as much as you plan, you never know what is going to happen when you put it to the test. And the more interconnected things are, when one thing doesn't pan it out, it takes down the rest of the plan. Planning flexibility with backup plans, traveling light, and going as low tech as possible is safest. Unfortunately low tech and light contradict each other.

#53 Hunter

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:34 PM

The Bible, because of the paper some of them are printed on, is the best low tech but still ultra-light resource there is.

I'm looking through my "Bible as a Textbook" resources. Thank you to those who keep mentioning Bibles. It keeps slipping my mind, and whether I am a Christian anymore or not, I've never lost my appreciation of the Bible as a textbook.

#54 Monarch Room

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 02:15 PM

I'm basically trying to do this now, and I really don't like it. I'm housesitting for my folks for 6 weeks, and so I tried to bring as little as possible. I've had to drop a few things I would normally do (AAS and anything to do with math manipulatives.) I ended up ordering more c-rods just because I didn't know where they would be in storage. I guess I could simplify. I just really don't love giving up all my books :/ I really, really look forward to having a school room with bookshelves, and loads of games, and math doo-dads.

#55 Susie in MS

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 02:37 PM

Okay, being flexible and preparing for no electronics, my list would change:

Pocket size KJV
Math--Strayor Uptom 1-3
LA-- PLL and ILL
CHOW
My flash drive that has Magic School bus vids and about 100 books or so on there. Mostly AO stuff (hist, sci, lit).
An e-reader--loaded

Usual supplies (paper, pencils, etc)
Laminated, paper math manipulatives such as dominoes; laminated, blank worksheet with dry erase markers
Our Island Story
Some US history condensed narrative (This Country of Ours?)
Something for snuggle time. Not sure what.

Science???? I dunno. I mean I like Handbook of Nature Study, but what about all other science. That is one hunk of a book and will take the space, so I would want something smaller allowing for other science books. Madam How and Lady Why?? Story Book of Science?? I would need to preread and print them up. Just not sure.

#56 cloudswinger

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 01:14 PM

I think I could do it right now, with a tablet and an ereader. I have an annotation app, so we can write on our pdf worksheets, although it's not our first choice. I have a solar charger, although I haven't tried it with the tablet. I have science, math, language arts and history material on the tablet, and literature on the ereaders. Definitely would need to stop at some internet cafes once in a while to get more ebooks though. And backups to the cloud.

But realistically, once I'm wherever I'm at, I go to the bookstores in the big cities. There's usually plenty of kids books, and usually they're quite cheap. I'd buy some bilingual kids books or picture encyclopedias in the local language for language practice. Also probably math practice books would be easy to use, not much translating needed there. And some regional nature books, there's always english language stuff for tourists. And paper and art supplies(and a scissor or knife, which wouldn't be allowed in a carry-on anyway!), although I tend to bring a small amount with me anyway. I love going to other countries' bookstores, and music stores. I tend to buy a small local instrument when I go abroad and practicing that also gives some entertainment value. The curriculum I use at home really doesn't tend to get used much on the road. There's just so much culture and travel stuff that can be learned that I don't feel the need to focus on American curriculum. America is one of the younger countries, most other places have a lot more history. Math is used everyday, and for places like Vietnam, where everything is priced in the 10,000s, there's a lot of practice with big numbers. Even the kids know how to bargain and do basic math.

Of course this is predicated on where and for how long we go. Generally we do carry ons on the way out, and end up with more stuff for the way back which I've learned to pack in cardboard boxes.

#57 cloudswinger

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 02:00 PM

Amira did it.

http://amiralace.blo...t-of-books.html


There's a company that scans books for 1 dollar per 100 pages. I'm tempted sometimes to send in my History of US set so we can carry that around and read it in the car or something..

#58 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 04:21 PM

I have scanned whole books before, but it took awhile with my cheesy scanner.

I'm seriously thinking of scanning the old NtK series. I'm waiting to see if I'm still heavily using it a year from now though, and if so, I'll buy a whole new set to cut apart and just...one page at a time scan the books, I guess.

I was thinking today, it's easier and cheaper to buy a whole new cheap large laptop than it is to replace the ebooks, or invest in ultralight devices. If ebooks are a SUPPLEMENT, and you only need your core while settling in, waiting 3 months to save up and acquire a cheesy laptop might be the way to go in certain situations that require an ultra light move.

So earlier I was thinking it was useless to cart along DVDs and a external storage device, without a device that can read them, but it's not. Basic laptops are becoming cheaper and cheaper, and they make a nice gift to leave behind, when you are continually on the move.

So I'm back to what can I fit into a carry-on, being comfortable that I wouldn't be able to use my supplements right away. It's really unlikely, wherever I go, that I wouldn't eventually be able to get ahold of a cheesy laptop for awhile. And the cheesy ones don't need to be hidden away.

So I guess I would go with my cell phone (a Sprint Photon Q if I was staying in the USA), Kindle Fire, and 2 regular Kindles preloaded with as much LITERATURE as possible (if I was traveling with more than me as a tutor and self-educator, and still had children). I'm still trying to figure out what regular Kindles can do without laptop support. The Fire can do so much, but battery life is quite limited. When I first got my Kindle Fire, I didn't have the Photon Q. I'm wondering if the Photon Q could supplement a regular Kindle. My head hurts just thinking about all the combinations of devices and what they can do and not do. Ugh!

When I bought my Kindle Fire, it was the only reader that could download books directly from my library. it doesn't have external storage though. I had to pick between the two features. I'm not sure what is available since then. Even Apple is getting better and better about making it's devices less dependent on a laptop. I think in time it will get easier and easier to function without a PC or laptop for extended periods of time. Right now it still takes some knowhow.

My point is that, laptops are almost as easy to acquire as paper and crayons, at the new home. And that takes an adjustment in my thinking, from the way it proved best to maneuver in the past.

#59 kolamum

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:03 PM

Yes, I can. I know I can because we did. All though not ALL those grades. We only had 2 school aged children at the time. Having said that I still think you could with the help of many electronical devices that can have so many books taking up so little space!

#60 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:29 PM

I was just imagining what it would mean to have no technology at all. No Kindle full of literature. No World Book encyclopedia on CD-ROM. One carry-on for all of K-8.

At that point I guess it would mean ripping pages out of different books, and making every page count. I'd rip the detective pages out of Considering God's Creation, and use them as reference sheets.

It would be far more difficult trying to do it secular, than to include a thin-papered Bible.

It's funny, because that was the standard in the past. Book were printed smaller back then, and wasted less space on eye candy, so it was a little easier for them. But still...that was so common 150 years ago. 150 years ago, just isn't that long ago, even by American standards.

I'm going to have to dig that carry-on out of the closet. I'm just curious exactly what can fit in there. Yes, I know I'm weird that I'm curious. :lol:

#61 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:32 PM

I tend to buy a small local instrument when I go abroad and practicing that also gives some entertainment value.


American music education is very different than in many other countries, isn't it?

#62 jar7709

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:35 PM

I would love to try. We dream of being a more traveling family. We take 1-2 week trips once or twice a year but don't bother with official homeschooling on those little jaunts, beyond the kids' notebooks and usual reading.

We are seriously considering taking some several-month North America road trips when the kids get a little bigger. I'm undecided how much traditional homeschooling vs. unschooling we would want to do, but if we were to suddenly leave tomorrow, I'd probably take MM, BFSU, and the kids' Intellego loaded onto kindles, and our usual travelin' gear of magnifying glasses and binoculars, field guides, colored pencils and notebooks. We'd also make use of resources available where we go...there's lots of great, free activities at national park and historic sites. If we do this, I'd probably have to keep working at least a little (I work remotely) so we'd probably have at least one laptop and set ourselves up with mobile wifi hotspots which would help.

#63 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:35 PM

Laminated, paper math manipulatives such as dominoes; laminated, blank worksheet with dry erase markers


Do you have a source for laminated manipulatives or did you make them yourself?

#64 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:41 PM

Handbook of Nature Study


That would be hard to leave behind, but I think I would, and try to focus on observation skills and learning the terms on the Considering God's Creation detective worksheets. It's hard to imagine not having that book though, as I have a long history with it.

I wonder what books we would bring that we don't have a logical reason to bring, but just need to...because...just because.

#65 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:44 PM

I think it will get easier as more encyclopedias and similar books are available electronically.


What is available as encyclopedias and similar books?

I haven't even gotten into listing my favorite ebooks yet.

#66 Hunter

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:55 PM

At some point I stocked up with a huge Rainbow order that had things like MP latin and Christian Studies, Shirley English, and more math.


I wonder if it's easier for people who spend a lot of time on Latin.

I think that would do it, except for piano..........anyone ever try one of those roll-up music keyboards? Should I add one of those?

Ferby Colored pencils
watercolor paints and two brushes
Kid size scissors.

- a book with songs/hymns
- a book with poems


I'm curious about how much emphasis people would place on art and music, if they were given a one year trial run, and then a chance to repack.

#67 elegantlion

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:26 PM

We considered RVing as well, so I love these type of questions. I've also considered running off to a deserted island, so that would negate electricity.

I would use a laptop as well. I loved my netbook, the screen size was not horrid, but the reliability was awful. I would also have 2 kindles, one for me, one for ds.

For real books, I would consider the What your th grader should know for most topics. I would also consider the SOTW series, not the activity books. For Science I would consider one science encyclopedia, like the Kingfisher. Math? Maybe MEP, which I would download, along with KISS grammar. Good mechanical pencils and some separate erasers would be needed. Art would be a sketchpad and select drawing pencils.

I would use a lot of creative invention. I would probably pack Corbett's Classical Rhetoric for myself and to guide my writing instruction.

It would get harder in 7th or 8th , now that we're in high school?? Well I could probably do one year at a time.

#68 elegantlion

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:31 PM

I'm curious about how much emphasis people would place on art and music, if they were given a one year trial run, and then a chance to repack.


We would focus on drawing and spontaneous projects, I can usually come up with those on the fly. Music would be in a similar fashion. I'd have a MP3 filled with our musical favorites, which can be diverse. I'd wing a lot of it. In addition I'd probably take opportunity of the local flair, even if it was the music of the wind in the palm tree.

#69 Dory

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:34 PM

I'm curious about how much emphasis people would place on art and music, if they were given a one year trial run, and then a chance to repack.


I couldn't survive without music. I would probably struggle through teaching a lot things just to ensure that there was room for the arts. My dd and my youngest ds are much like me that way.

#70 cmarango

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 10:55 PM

Hmmm...I just packed a small (carry-on size) suitcase with our school stuff for our trip tomorrow. Although we are only gone for about a month and we have finished up a few subjects already, like spelling and our main math program.

#71 ALB

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:50 AM

No! I can't!

I know because we DO live overseas and believe me it is terrible trying to just GET the stuff here. We have kindles and an iPad, but there are so many other physical things that you just need. What about all the wonderful history encyclopedias, science books, picture books that give a visual insight into what you are learning? Then there are art supplies (where we live didn't even sell crayons until recently), paper, binders (still can't get those here), math manipulatives, etc. I don't want to just park my dc in front of a computer screen all day for every subject, I want them to savor the experience of real books. I think that having actual books is very important for the younger years. If you were willing to use the internet for most subjects, you could possibly accomplish it.

Ok, that little rant relieves some of my stress about this :). I've been trying to figure out how to get some more books here soon and so this subject has definitely been on my mind.

#72 loesje22000

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:16 AM

I'm curious about how much emphasis people would place on art and music, if they were given a one year trial run, and then a chance to repack.


In my mind I was packing for several years
For one year I would skip the poems not the songs/hymns.
Singing is very important to me and keeps me sane :)

For K/1st it would be nice to have the possibility to craft.

We do have Hymnbook and Bible in one editions, they are on the same thin paper as bibles so that would be an option.

#73 SCGS

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 09:53 AM

No! I can't!

I know because we DO live overseas and believe me it is terrible trying to just GET the stuff here. We have kindles and an iPad, but there are so many other physical things that you just need. What about all the wonderful history encyclopedias, science books, picture books that give a visual insight into what you are learning? Then there are art supplies (where we live didn't even sell crayons until recently), paper, binders (still can't get those here), math manipulatives, etc. I don't want to just park my dc in front of a computer screen all day for every subject, I want them to savor the experience of real books. I think that having actual books is very important for the younger years. If you were willing to use the internet for most subjects, you could possibly accomplish it.

Ok, that little rant relieves some of my stress about this :). I've been trying to figure out how to get some more books here soon and so this subject has definitely been on my mind.


This is my major concern. Real books to catch the eye, hold in the hand and be enamoured with. Books and reading don't have much place in the culture we are moving into.

#74 cloudswinger

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:09 AM

The problem I have with the Handbook of Nature study is that the animals are very much Northern US animals. If you were to end up somewhere in Africa, Asia, South America, or even the southern US, you just don't see those animals. We don't get chicadees, or robins or bluebirds here in Florida. We have Anhingas, Herons and Ibises. They don't even mention alligators. There are no chestnuts, willows or ashes. We have palms, mangos, citrus and bamboos. In fact, now that I look at the tree section, there are only 2 out of 17 trees here.

And arts and music are very much more available than in the US. I think people sing/play music a lot more than they do here. Especially if you do go somewhere without all the electronics, there's a lot more time for musical entertainment. Maybe the visual arts might be restricted due to lack of supplies, but there's also dancing, sculpture(clay usually can be available), wood carving(if not clay, there's always a knife!), sewing crafts, knitting, etc.

I'm not visualizing where you'd go to be completely off grid for so long, I don't know that there's any such place where you also want to take your kids. But the places I'd consider moving to - Costa Rica or Vietnam, there's plenty of connection to the world. Even the rural areas aren't more than a few hours away from internet access. And usually a day trip to a big city. Unless you're on a deserted tropical island. Then that Handbook of Nature Study would do no good, they don't even have palms in it. Or parrots. Or poison frogs. ;)

I do have one book I'd definitely take - Encyclopedia of Discovery Visual Dictionary by Weldon Owen. It was a bargain book at Barnes and Noble, but it's really dense in information and fairly compact. Covers Space, Earth, atmosphere, prehistory, plants, animals, human body, ancient civilizations, architecture and countries of the world.

#75 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:24 PM


Posted ImageHunter, on 21 November 2012 - 07:55 PM, said:

I'm curious about how much emphasis people would place on art and music, if they were given a one year trial run, and then a chance to repack.

In my mind I was packing for several years
For one year I would skip the poems not the songs/hymns.
Singing is very important to me and keeps me sane :)

For K/1st it would be nice to have the possibility to craft.

We do have Hymnbook and Bible in one editions, they are on the same thin paper as bibles so that would be an option.


I was thinking, yes, having planned for several years, but after one year, a fairy godmother pops down and say, "You can switch a few things if you want." I'm curious how many people would add in more arts than they had previously planned.

It's really hard to plan for a situation that is very different from the one you are currently living. Even redoing a scenario you have already done, will turn out differently because both we and the place we are going to has changed.

Which Bible comes with hymns in it???? I've seen a KJV with the Scottish Psalter in the back, but not hymns. I know that Bibles in foreign countries often come with hymns, but haven't seen any in English.

#76 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:45 PM

I would probably pack Corbett's Classical Rhetoric for myself and to guide my writing instruction.


I've been thinking a lot about self-education. Since I don't have little ones any more, and am merely tutoring, I think a lot more about what I want to learn and teach, than I did as a homeschool mom. Back almost a year ago I found myself repeating patterns with my students that I had played out with my sons, and nipped the co-dependant behavior and lack of emphasis on the teacher right in the bud. It's funny because to nip the co-dependant behavior, I thought I was going to need more open-and-go, but couldn't do that for a variety of reasons, and had to temporarily use some ultra teacher intensive items that Ioved and believed in, and the co-dependant stuff stopped. It was funny. The remedy was the opposite of what I thought it would be. It wasn't to deemphasize me, but to emphasize ME, not as the world's best facilitator, but us TEACHER.

It's important to separate in our minds what we want to learn and teach, from what is best for the students to learn; and then figure out where we want to compromise and separate.

I was looking at my 3rd copy of Composition in the Classical Tradition, that I rebought after both times of being homeless. That's an expensive book to keep rebuying. SIGH! And it's NOT on my list of must takes. :confused: You would think I would learn by now, right? Even though I never end out teaching with it long term, I like to read it, I guess. I'm trying to figure out what that means and how I should react to that.

#77 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:54 PM

This is my major concern. Real books to catch the eye, hold in the hand and be enamoured with. Books and reading don't have much place in the culture we are moving into.


I love the Everyman's classics and the Puffin Classics. Both sets are little hardcover classics. When it comes to self-soothing, it's all about touch to me. I learn best visually with diagrams and maps, but for enjoying literature, it's important how the book feels in my hands, especially if I'm going to be reading and rereading a book. over and over.

#78 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:59 PM

And arts and music are very much more available than in the US. I think people sing/play music a lot more than they do here. Especially if you do go somewhere without all the electronics, there's a lot more time for musical entertainment. Maybe the visual arts might be restricted due to lack of supplies, but there's also dancing, sculpture(clay usually can be available), wood carving(if not clay, there's always a knife!), sewing crafts, knitting, etc.


My favorite music book is The Kid's Can Press Jumbo Book of Music. I read it years and years ago and it was the first time I understood what music was. It's so much more than what rich and talented Americans do.

#79 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:03 PM

The problem I have with the Handbook of Nature study is that the animals are very much Northern US animals. If you were to end up somewhere in Africa, Asia, South America, or even the southern US, you just don't see those animals. We don't get chicadees, or robins or bluebirds here in Florida. We have Anhingas, Herons and Ibises. They don't even mention alligators. There are no chestnuts, willows or ashes. We have palms, mangos, citrus and bamboos. In fact, now that I look at the tree section, there are only 2 out of 17 trees here.



Good points about the Handbook of Nature Study. More reason to learn to use identification vocabulary, than to learn about specific species. The detective worksheets are a must have on my list, and I can comfortably cross HNS off.

#80 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:14 PM

No! I can't!

I know because we DO live overseas and believe me it is terrible trying to just GET the stuff here. We have kindles and an iPad, but there are so many other physical things that you just need. What about all the wonderful history encyclopedias, science books, picture books that give a visual insight into what you are learning? Then there are art supplies (where we live didn't even sell crayons until recently), paper, binders (still can't get those here), math manipulatives, etc. I don't want to just park my dc in front of a computer screen all day for every subject, I want them to savor the experience of real books. I think that having actual books is very important for the younger years. If you were willing to use the internet for most subjects, you could possibly accomplish it.

Ok, that little rant relieves some of my stress about this :). I've been trying to figure out how to get some more books here soon and so this subject has definitely been on my mind.


Have you seen the Dover Evergreen Classics Complete Set? I think there are 20% off coupons floating around. This 42 book set at $154.00, is cheap enough to ship in and leave behind, for some people. It's not so great visually, though. if that is a priority. Dover also sell the Children's Thrift Classics for the earlier readers.

#81 loesje22000

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:38 PM

Posted Image
I
Which Bible comes with hymns in it???? I've seen a KJV with the Scottish Psalter in the back, but not hymns. I know that Bibles in foreign countries often come with hymns, but haven't seen any in English.


Sorry Hunter,
I should have been more clear about this.
It would be a Dutch Bible with a Psalter (all 150) and +/- 491 Hymns.
As it is printed on special, very thin paper the book would be ca. 2,5 cm thick.

I grew up with these integrated books, so they are very common to me, and forgot other countries may have not that....

#82 mumto2

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 05:58 PM

I think the most important thing for us was having books that stood alone. Our Island Story created great writing practice. We found a small paperback science book after we arrived that had 100 great physics and chemistry questions answered. We spent months going over that book. We simply read our couple of pages with no illustrations and discussed. It should have been way over their heads but they loved it. We spent hours as a family with those topics. How nuclear power plants work and are built was forever -- fortunately Dh knew tons. My dc's were 7 and 9 when we did this but you can do lots without much. We got proper copies of Twelfth Night, Merchant of Venice, etc. And did full readings. Had a great time at it. They kept an illustrated journal of our activities. Everything was new and it is a great keepsake. Really our school went a bit downhill when my Rainbow box arrived. But I will say I don't know what I would have done without the library or access to books for leisure reading. A think kindles would be an absolute must.

#83 Hunter

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 08:18 PM

Sorry Hunter,
I should have been more clear about this.
It would be a Dutch Bible with a Psalter (all 150) and +/- 491 Hymns.
As it is printed on special, very thin paper the book would be ca. 2,5 cm thick.

I grew up with these integrated books, so they are very common to me, and forgot other countries may have not that....


I just cannot understand why we don't have these in English. :confused:

I think the most important thing for us was having books that stood alone. Our Island Story created great writing practice. We found a small paperback science book after we arrived that had 100 great physics and chemistry questions answered. We spent months going over that book. We simply read our couple of pages with no illustrations and discussed. It should have been way over their heads but they loved it. We spent hours as a family with those topics. How nuclear power plants work and are built was forever -- fortunately Dh knew tons. My dc's were 7 and 9 when we did this but you can do lots without much. We got proper copies of Twelfth Night, Merchant of Venice, etc. And did full readings. Had a great time at it. They kept an illustrated journal of our activities. Everything was new and it is a great keepsake. Really our school went a bit downhill when my Rainbow box arrived. But I will say I don't know what I would have done without the library or access to books for leisure reading. A think kindles would be an absolute must.


Looking back, I always accomplished more when I had less. It was more haphazard, and that drives my OCD crazy, but more got DONE.

Money has tightened up for me, and every once in awhile it's frustrating when I cannot SEE something I think I might want to use, but...I've been more peaceful in my self-education and tutoring, and actually getting more done. I'm gradually shifting more and more books into the "I think I want to get rid of" pile. I'm taking the purging process very slowly, by just shifting items, but, in the long term, it doesn't pay for ME to be overloaded with ANYTHING. Books is the last thing for me go minimalist with, but I'm finally getting the same attitude towards books that I have with everything else.

When I was young we lived on a semi-tropical island that had a very high humidity level. EVERYTHING molded. Even book lovers had a different attitude towards books. There were lots of them around, but people used what they had, and seldom bought "forever" books. They were very much a disposable item. People didn't collect reference books or hardcover classics. I've been thinking about that today.

#84 SCGS

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 09:19 AM

sawuk, your post inspired me. :D I've got ideas and I'm beginning to relax and be excited.

Hunter, I have only briefly and sporatically wondered about what would become of books if left for extended periods in high heat and humidity. I think I'll refrain from investing in new and quality edition books until I'm more familiar with our new home. You have relieved a decent amount of pressure I was putting on myself and guilt that I was anticipating.

#85 Hunter

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:34 PM

This morning, I downloaded the Kindle version of Amazing Crayon Drawing With Lee Hammond: Create Lifelike Portraits, Pets, Landscapes and More. I'll try and give a review later and over the next few days. I'm always fascinated with crayon instructions because crayons are so easy to purchase when on the move.

Lee Hammond is a step up from the crayon painting lessons in the free Augsburg books. I was using more expensive crayons for awhile, but am committed to learning to use regular Crayolas, It means coloring lighter and a greater number of layers. I had to learn to slow down and not be in such a rush.

A couple other Kindle art books I like are You Can Draw in 30 Days and Teaching Art with Books Kids Love

My favorite ultra-lightweight art book is the Drawing Textbook ; it is nice and small, but has a LOT of lessons. It covers a lot of the same content as You can Draw in 30 Days. They make a good combination.

#86 Susie in MS

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 04:20 PM

Do you have a source for laminated manipulatives or did you make them yourself?


Here are some dominos. I print and laminate with clear contact paper. Cut appart. There are other websites with dominos.

There are worksheets (I forget the links) which have sections for dominos to lay and under them write the math facts for +/- .You could easily do this yourself and also do it for x&/. Oh here is one, but there are others that have more problems per page.

I also place a piece of plain copy paper and a lined piece of paper back to back and then laminate them together with clear contact paper. Of couse you can use a laminator. This gives you a blank sheet for drawings, math demos, etc and lined side for writing out copywork or what ever. I think they now sell these in plastic like sheets.

#87 Hunter

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 10:13 PM

Here are some dominos. I print and laminate with clear contact paper. Cut appart. There are other websites with dominos.

There are worksheets (I forget the links) which have sections for dominos to lay and under them write the math facts for +/- .You could easily do this yourself and also do it for x&/. Oh here is one, but there are others that have more problems per page.

I also place a piece of plain copy paper and a lined piece of paper back to back and then laminate them together with clear contact paper. Of couse you can use a laminator. This gives you a blank sheet for drawings, math demos, etc and lined side for writing out copywork or what ever. I think they now sell these in plastic like sheets.


Thanks for the links. So, you are using laminated paper as a lightweight whiteboard?

#88 cloudswinger

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 12:22 AM

I got a travel game set which had a mini set of dominoes. That started me on a small universal games set project, so that I could travel and do any number of games, from something simple like mancala to board games and even math games. So when I get stuck(again!) in a rural place in a 3rd world country and the power is out, at least I have some games to play. It includes a set of gaming dice, which I find is very good for all sorts of math games, a deck of cards, and a decktet and a piecepack, a set of chess pieces and a bunch of colored tokens, and some laminated paper boards, like a chess board, and some other ones. Also some of the game pieces are on magnetic paper, so they can be played during travel also. And I have a letter sized magnetic whiteboard that can go with it, which has multiple uses.
And a small book of games. Of course the best games are made up anyway...

That does not include word type games, and I'm not sure if I'd bring my travel scrabble set, or the word building card game which I can't think of the name right now. The card game would be lighter/smaller.

#89 Deb in NZ

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:21 PM

Would we get only 1 carry-on for everything (all years, all my 3dc)? If so, it would be very difficult to limit myself to that unless I chose vintage books (McGuffey's Readers, Ray's Arithmetic, etc.) assuming we would not have reliable internet or electricity. If internet/power was reliable, that would give us the option of using something like K12, SOS, Robinson Curriculum (none of which I would normally choose, but if I was facing a situation where I was to be very limited on resources for most/all of my dc's schooling years, I could make it work.)

If I had one carry-on /dc + 1 carry-on for me to cover 1-2 years max, I could easily bring what I wanted. Having reliable internet/power would give us more options, but we wouldn't be reliant on technology. In this situation & using what I've learned from a decade of HS/ing, graduating 2dc, & what is now available that wasn't when my dc were little, I would aim to bring the recommended books from LCC (1st edition) for the level my dc needed at the time. Maths I would choose the workbooks from www.esa.co.nz at their level + www.mathsbuddy.co.nz if we had reliable internet. In the primary years I would unschool science & social studies making use of the local resources, adding in our family's heritage through literature (read-alouds & assigned reading) via an ereader, if available. In the highschool years I would use the Learning Workbooks & Study Guides from www.esa.co.nz as the framework, adding in www.mathsbuddy.co.nz for maths & more literature via an ereader. I would expect each dc to produce a notebook (similar to the main lesson books in Waldorf Education) in each the the main subjects. This could be done either electronically or on paper, depending on the resources available. This would allow for an easier transition into NZ tertiary study.

#90 Heathermomster

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:44 PM

I did this last month for my 7th grader. We took the laptop, kindle, Westminster Shorter Catechism book, Oxford University Press Ancient Chinese text, Winston Basic, Math U See Video with worksheet booklet, and a life science text book. The hotel was an extended stay and provided Internet and printing. I packed a pencil sharpener, spiral notepad, and extra pencils. With the exception of math and Winston grammar, DS typed all of his work on my laptop. We went to book stores and visited a zoo. I came home with new books too.

Eta: I don't recall us touching the science text. We used the zoo visits and videos from Netflix and Amazon Prime to carry the day. I should mention that I have K12 and CPO Life science loaded on my computer.

#91 Hunter

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:49 PM

Would we get only 1 carry-on for everything (all years, all my 3dc)?


Everyone gets to write their own rules, or even do the exercise multiple times with different rules. As long as the exercise stays fun and helpful, and jumpstarts your creativity and flexibiity, then it's good.

We all are throwing out a lot of ideas that otherwise don't get thrown out into the arena. Who knows where the ideas will eventually lead. A trickle of a thought mixed with other trickles, can eventually lead to a raging river.

Every time I experience a limiting factor in my life, that stops me dead in my tracks, I become stronger and more flexible after that. Sometimes now I just create imaginary limiting factors to see what they produce. Little exercises to stretch myself. Then when the big bad things happen--which they ALWAYS do--I'm in fighting shape to handle them. I can just flick my wrist and snort and say, "Is that all you got to throw at me? Well, this is an EASY one! This one won't even make me sweat."

For anyone who spends a week contemplating this exercise, and later suddenly lands in a situation where they get 3 big boxes for 2 years, they'll think that's a piece of cake, after thinking about this.

And you never know when a lurker is reading threads. It's not unusual for a mom to need to spend time living at her parents house for a year or more with multiple children all crowded into one bedroom. What is going on in people's lives is different that what people are often posting about.

It's just a PROMPT. Do with it what you will. It's YOUR prompt.

#92 Amy Jo

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 09:15 PM

The problem I have with the Handbook of Nature study is that the animals are very much Northern US animals. ...

I'm not visualizing where you'd go to be completely off grid for so long, I don't know that there's any such place where you also want to take your kids.


Just FYI you can be off-grid and in the Northern US. (But I get your point, and even the people I know that are off-grid can easily get to a library with internet, and still get mail & packages, so they don't have to pack everything.)

I'm enjoying this thread. I think that while being offline for the actual books is quite do-able (maybe not with one suitcase though), I would really miss these forums. Seriously, my DH basically says "do whatever you think is best" - I'm glad he trusts me, but sometimes you really need to bounce an idea of someone and get some feedback!

#93 OKBud

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 10:24 PM

I am loving this thread too! We are planning to move into a fifth whell trailer for a while, so I've been thinking about this a lot.

For me, just remembering that I can (and SHOULD) get books on my nook is half the battle. I went to buy The Well Trained Mind and I was suddenly it occurred to me what and enormous sacrifice of space that would be! ha.

#94 cloudswinger

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:51 AM

I am loving this thread too! We are planning to move into a fifth whell trailer for a while, so I've been thinking about this a lot.

For me, just remembering that I can (and SHOULD) get books on my nook is half the battle. I went to buy The Well Trained Mind and I was suddenly it occurred to me what and enormous sacrifice of space that would be! ha.


All the extra weight will affect gas mileage too, if that's a consideration. Books are by far the heaviest things I own, and if I were RVing it, they'd certainly be examined very carefully.

#95 Χάρων

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:58 AM

This is my major concern. Real books to catch the eye, hold in the hand and be enamoured with. Books and reading don't have much place in the culture we are moving into.


:iagree:

#96 Χάρων

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 10:05 AM

I know I could do it. My main tool right now is a small dry erase board and marker.

#97 Susie in MS

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 10:34 AM

Thanks for the links. So, you are using laminated paper as a lightweight whiteboard?


Yes. I am in a situation where I bring my dd to work with me and I need light as can be school stuff. I went to Walmart back then to see if they has the thin whiteboards and all I could find were the ones that are for handwriting practice. So I home and laminated lined paper and cardstock (it was card stock not printer paper) together.

I also use (and would pack) dice and cards.

#98 Hunter

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:13 PM

All the extra weight will affect gas mileage too, if that's a consideration. Books are by far the heaviest things I own, and if I were RVing it, they'd certainly be examined very carefully.


Yup, weight will mess you up quicker than bulk. Often black and white books weigh less than color books because they are printed on fluffier paper.

#99 Hunter

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:22 PM

Yes. I am in a situation where I bring my dd to work with me and I need light as can be school stuff. I went to Walmart back then to see if they has the thin whiteboards and all I could find were the ones that are for handwriting practice. So I home and laminated lined paper and cardstock (it was card stock not printer paper) together.

I also use (and would pack) dice and cards.


Thanks for these tips!

I don't know much about whiteboards. They are slippery and I find them hard to write neatly on. I need to explore options other than paper. I use up a LOT of paper. I've toyed with touch screens a bit, but don't like those either. Chalkboards are heavy and chalk is messy. Thankfully paper has always been plentiful and cheap wherever I've ended out. But I want to try out this idea of laminated paper to see how well I like it.

#100 CatholicMom

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:30 PM

Sooo... I don't have a smartphone, kindle, laptop or any other gadgets :ph34r: . I didn't realize I was quite that alone. Since my desktop computer and printer wouldn't fit in my suitcase, I would just have to load up workbooks, walkman, and a bunch of audio CD's (SOTW, Wee Sing, Classical Kids) and a science encyclopedia or two... in addition to the essentials like paper & pencils, of course. I would probably steal the whiteboard idea so as to use up less scratch paper. I would also bring a Bible, catechism, & minimum art supplies if they would fit. My kids LOVE art. But I think I could only do 1 year at a time.

I don't think I could fit enough material for K-8 in one suitcase in my case. A laptop with internet access would change everything.


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