Once we started homeschooling, we realized the many benefits to it. One of those benefits is the freedom to travel. While we haven’t done a lot of it, we have definitely taken off during what would be school days in the public school system to enjoy places like DisneyWorld, Galveston, Idaho, and Pensacola.
With this in mind, I thought it would be fun to make a cork-backed map of the U.S. for our daughter to map the places that she has traveled to. For every town we’ve visited, she pushes into the map, a pin with a strip of paper attached that states the town name.
Our 10 year old loves it, as does any visitor who peruses our schoolroom ( which actually happens a lot- people seem intrigued by homeschooling for the most part).
To make this map, I got very thrifty and found a map at a local teacher supply store for about $3. I reused cork tiles that had been in my daughter’s room at our old house to back it.
After measuring the map, I laid the cork tiles out on a piece of cardboard and cut them just a bit bigger than the map to form a frame of sorts around the map. If I’d had spray glue I would have used that but I didn’t so I used just hot glue to attach the cardboard to the cork. I then glued the map to the cork.
I used several nails to attach it to the wall. Then came the fun part! Together, my daughter and I taped the names of the various towns she’s been to some sewing pins. Hali located all the towns visited herself and really enjoyed marking them with the pins as we remembered together our trips.
The day after Labor Day marks the beginning of our SIXTH (!!!) year of homeschooling. Hali is starting the 6th grade ( we combined two years into one year a few years back, so she is a year ahead).
My big little girl, who spends all school years complaining and procrastinating her school work- especially math- has already been digging into her Life of Fred books. It makes me inwardly smirk every time I see that girl devouring math books when she doesn’t even have to. Of course I hurriedly look away, else she realize that she has fallen prey to part of my evil master plan, in which she is actually is learning ALL the time, not just during “school hours”.
This really and truly is the last year I will be able to homeschool Hali without help of some sort. By the end of last year, I was frequently googling answers for math, because I honestly could NOT remember how to do many of the problems. Smarter than a 5th grader I am not. I’m going to rely on my BFF Google quite a bit this year I am sure, but next year? I don’t think I’ll be able to fake it even a little. So a co-op or one of the local homeschool “schools” is happening next year.
Any spare time I have lately has been spent working on a small schoolroom redo. I reconfigured the desks, took things off the walls, repainted, added things to the walls, bought a couple of comfy reading chairs, etc. It has kept me busy, but the finish line is near! The desks need another coat of paint. I’m on the hunt for the perfect rug, then I’m going to DIY a small ottoman and I should be done with the schoolroom! For now. Because tweaking things just a little is the norm around here and if I find the perfect item to conceal (don’t feel!) the ugly computer components I will definitely snatch it up.
Here’s a sneak peak: