3 Tips for Roadschooling from Your RV

RV travel with kids is a fantastic experience. Not only does it allow you to reconnect as a family and make some incredible memories, roadschooling gives your little travelers a unique and wonderful education as you explore this amazing country.

Jumping into roadschooling your kids might seem a little overwhelming at first, but with a little bit of research, you’re sure to feel more confident. This article is a great place to start that research!

As a seasoned roadschool mom, I’m here to offer you my top 3 pieces of advice in order to make your roadschooling adventures as successful as possible.

Tip #1: Know the Rules

The first thing you need to do? Make sure you understand the rules you need to follow as a roadschooling parent. For the most part, road schoolers are required to follow the homeschool laws of their domicile state. Typically, this will be the state where you begin your travels, or the state where you have a mailing address and have established residency. 

The exception to this rule is if you plan to be in a state that is not your domicile state for more than 30 days. In that case, you should follow the laws of the state you are in. The best way to avoid issues with this rule is to avoid staying in any particular state for more than 30 days, unless that state happens to be one of the few that does not require parents to give notice of their intent to homeschool.

These states include: Alaska, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, New Jersey, Oklahoma, and Texas

If you find that your current domicile state has very restrictive homeschooling laws that make roadschooling difficult, you might want to consider changing your residency to a state with more related homeschool laws. Many people choose Texas for its extremely relaxed homeschool laws and lack of income tax. 

To find out the homeschool laws in your domicile state, check out the HSLDA website

Many States do not require prior notice of intent to Homeschool.

Tip #2: Learn About Your Curriculum Options

Once you have a good understanding of the homeschooling laws in your domicile state, the next step is to learn about your options in terms of roadschool style and curriculum. You might be surprised to learn that there are actually a huge number of different ways to approach homeschooling on the road. 

Some of the most common styles of roadschooling and curriculum options include:


Unschooling involves allowing your children to freely explore their interests. As the parent, you are there to provide learning opportunities and resources when they are wanted, but not to push any specific subject. 

For many, unschooling pairs perfectly with traveling, as there are endless opportunities to dive deeply into the things that catch your interest along the way. This works really well for the driven, passionate kids out there. That said, many others really need more structure than unschooling offers. 

Unit Studies

Some roadschoolers choose to do unit studies. These are studies done over a period of time that deep-dive into one particular subject, using various books, videos, and other media to gain knowledge of the subject and sometimes incorporating crafts or other hands-on activities. 

Sometimes unit studies are done in addition to more traditional schoolwork. Other times, they are the only schoolwork the family does. In all cases, unit studies are an ideal way to incorporate learning into your travels and adventures. 

Creating unit studies around the places you’ll be seeing helps kids get a very thorough understanding of what they’re seeing, and seeing the things they’re learning about in real life helps keep them excited about learning. 

There are many ways to set up your homeschooling schedule, depending on works best for you.

Traditional School at Home

Lots of roadschool parents feel more comfortable knowing their children are meeting all of the benchmarks they would be meeting in school. This is especially true for those families who plan for their kids to return to a traditional school environment once their travels are done. 

With this type of schooling, there is a structured curriculum that is followed. School work must be done regularly and every subject must be covered.

Some people are very strict about when school hours are, or how much must be covered each day. Meanwhile, there are others who take a more laid-back approach. 

In a lot of cases, people pair traditional schoolwork with unit studies or unschooling in order to ensure they’re taking full advantage of the educational opportunities presented throughout their travels. 

Online School

There is also the option of doing online school. In many cases, online school programs are tied to the public school in your domicile state. However, there are also some private online school options out there. 

Online school does take away some freedom and can tie you down a bit since you will likely need to be online for a large chunk of the day each day. That said, it also takes a lot of the work of homeschooling off of the parents’ shoulders and helps ensure the students are doing the same things their peers are doing—something that may or may not be important to you. 

Of course, not everyone can put themselves in one of these boxes. Many, many roadschoolers (and homeschoolers, for that matter) mix and match these styles or even switch styles to suit their kids’ needs in the moment. It’s not uncommon to find someone who relies solely on things seen and learned during their travels for social studies and history, but still requires their kids to follow a math curriculum. It’s also not unusual to see a child switch from unschooling in their elementary years to a much more intense curriculum when they hit high school. 

The path you and your family choose is totally up to you. It should be tailor-made to fit your family and should adjust as needs and wants change. It should also be woven into your travels. After all, it’s much more fun to learn about Thomas Jefferson while visiting his home, or to study volcanoes while exploring Mount St. Helens!

Tip #3: Schedule Down Time

Downtime is incredibly important. Keeping up with homeschooling while also working from home is a lot on its own, and adding in travel days and field trips to go out and see all of the amazing things you’re traveling to can feel overwhelming. For this reason, it is incredibly important to plan for downtime in your travel schedule. 

Generally, I try to plan for at least two down days each week. These are days when we can rest and recharge, catch up on schoolwork/grown-up work/chores that need to be done, or dive deeper into subjects we discovered during that week’s adventures. Down days are also a chance for the kids to socialize with friends found during our travels or explore their own interests and hobbies—both things that are important aspects of any type of homeschooling. 

You might feel like you’re wasting time when you plan for these down days, but you’re really not! These days will help you enjoy your travels to the fullest, and they are the key to keeping your family happy on the road for long periods of time.

There you have it, my top 3 tips for successfully roadschooling your kids and getting the most out of your educational travels. Hopefully this information inspires you to dig a bit deeper into the world of roadschooling and then dive in. I promise you won’t regret it!

Always make sure to balance you schedule for both work and play. 

About Chelsea Gonzales

Chelsea Gonzales has been living in an RV and traveling with her family for 7 years now. She road schools her two children, using various travel experiences as lessons in history, science, geography, and more. During their time on the road, the Gonzales family has had the pleasure of touring the 48 contiguous United States as well as parts of Canada. They have learned a lot along the way and Chelsea is happy to share some of that knowledge through her writing.