This free, printable, unit study is a ministry of Heather Idoni, and Funschooling Units
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(Vacation Education)

Written by Ruth Storvik and Edited by Karen Caroe

With miscellaneous submissions by members of the Funschoolers Discussion Loop.

*** A great big THANK-YOU to Ruth Storvik for submitting this wonderful vacation unit for publication. Ruth is a wonderful homeschooling mom and a member of the Funschoolers Unit Study Discussion Loop.
*** Another THANK-YOU to all the members of the Funschoolers Unit Study Discussion Loop who contributed to our discussions on Travel and Vacations.

A Note From Ruth

If you are in a position to travel much unit studies fit right into travel plans. We include the kids in planning a study trip. We get lots of books from the library and inter-library loan, information off the internet, copy maps to highlight the roads we will take, ask around for information and then compile all of it into a notebook and begin to decide where we will go and what we will see. Everyone has a designated colored marker to highlight or comment on things in the notebook, then everyone gets to list in order 3 places or things that they really want to include in the itinerary. As a family we decide what will be included in the itinerary and we try to include everyones priority requests. We all agree on bugeting as well.
When the time comes we pack up all the books into the camper (actually a
small, old motorhome God allowed us to buy and fix all up) with everything else and take our school on the road.
You will find that you all learn so much and you will enjoy your vacation more. We have found that even when we only take short weekend trips we find ourselves incorporating some of this because it adds so much to the experience.
Happy Vacation Educations!



SPELLING words come from where you are and what you see, state and capital names, other important words.
* This is a good time to reinforce capitalization, correct writing of addresses, and correct post office abbreviations.

spring up all throughout the trip as new experiences and places come along.
* This is a great opportunity to discuss colloquialisms and regional speech. Write down odd expressions you hear and try to get meanings for them.
* Make a list of vocabulary words before your trip. If you will be going on a geological dig, have a list of words that you can use that will relate to what you will be doing. If you will be going to a city, have a list of words unique to the city.
* Don't forget to double your word power by interchanging spelling and vocabulary words.

READING is wide open to subjects such as biographies of people from the area, folk tales, history, information, fiction or non-fiction etc. Take time to read the historical markers and building markers.

allows you to put your imagination to work in new and exciting places and adventures, or describe what it would be like to live in this place or time.
* Take the time to practice adjectives and adverbs.
* Write some poetry.

JOURNALS capture memories as they happen.
*A family journal can be kept up everyday.
*Individual journals are fun to read when you get home to capture everyone's unique perspective on what was seen and done.
*Add photos, creative writings, brochures, menus, ticket stubs, drawings, etc. to your journal. The more you can put in, the better.


MATH fits right in with distances, time, expenses and mileage.
* Using a map, prior to the trip, have student use the legend to estimate the distance you will be traveling from point A to B. Then, marking the odometer reading at the beginning and end, determine how close you estimated.
* If you can drive 60 miles per hour, estimate the amount of time it will take to reach your destination.
* If you will be changing time zones, use this opportunity to discuss why we have time zones, learn their names, and how they "work".
* Have student figure how many miles to the gallon your can get when traveling. Have them figure or keep track of daily expenses---food, overnight stays, admissions, tolls, etc.


GEOGRAPHY lends it self to learning all about the states, capital, cultures, land forms, rivers, mountians etc.
* Take time to learn the state mottos, bird, flower, flag, etc.
* Find out how the state capital was decided. Has it moved? What was the first capital. Why do you think it is located where it is?
* What kind of people settled this state in the beginning? What kind of people live here now? Is this a state where families settle for generations or is it a "transient" state? What is it famous for?
* What is the primary physical geography? Is that typical to the state, the region? What are the main rivers and lakes? What are their primary functions?
* What is the nearest mountain range?
* What are the major crops? industry? exports?
* Time permitting or when traveling in an RV, make a salt-dough type map of the area noting the physical geography.


HISTORY provides information on where you are and what you see.
*Don't forget to check out museums while you are there. Look for small local history museums. Talk to the "locals."
*Note the architectural style. Name it. Draw it. What does it say about the place you are visiting. What does the downtown look like? Have the historical buildings been preserved or replaced by more modern buildings?
* Who are some famous (or infamous) people from the area?
* For what is this area most well-known?


ART added to the journals enhances them. Draw or color pictures of people, places and things that you have seen or illustrate your creative writing.


SCIENCE can be found in nature walks, museums, studing the night sky around the campfire, experimenting with experiences and object not found near home.
* Don't forget to collect rocks and plantlife where permissable. These can be used in a collection for classification.
* Try to find birds that are different from the ones at home
* Bugs (especially around the lights at night) can be really fascinating. Note, Mom, this is a Daddy-time project!
* Science museums are always fun. Some places boast wonderful science museums. This is great for a rainy day.


MUSIC can be done around the campfire. Also, we take chorus books to use in the cars as we travel (our kids learned harmonica and recorder and other small intruments to use around the campfire)
*Don't forget to check out regional music. Songs that are famous in that area. Also, see if there is a state song.


COOKING can be a new experience as you learn to cook over a campfire, or hotplate in a hotel. Menu planning happens before you leave as well as budgeting.

is an important skill for travel. Learning to pack efficiently with the proper clothing and personal items encompasses many living skill activities---list making, careful folding, prioritizing, etc.

SEWING. Keep an emergencey sewing kit in the car for small tears and lost buttons. It is important to keep up clothing when travel as the purchase of more clothing significantly adds to the cost of the vacation.

EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS. Decide what kind of Emergency kit to travel with. This will depend on where you are going. Antibacterial lotion, analgesics, antibiotic ointment, bug spray, flares, tweezers, etc.


P.E. happens automatically as you hike, climb, walk swim, ski, canoe, bike, rollerblade, or what ever you are doing.


MISSIONS is an eye-opening experience for everyone when you look up ministries that your church supports, or just ones you know about, or people you used to know in a ministry. If you will be near a church supported missionary, make plans ahead to serve them in some way. Do a service project for them, take them out to dinner, spend time letting them show you their ministry. Ask them for prayer requests and take time to pray with them before you leave. Spend some time getting to know the people of the area and what kinds of things missionaries do to reach them.

BIBLE lessons can be related to topics that you are experiencing, as family discuss spiritual applications to events and experiences.

We hope this summer fun unit will be a blessing to you and your family.



For questions, comments, and suggestions, Please e-mail Heather at

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