The U.S.Naval Academy, from where James and I both graduated, is sometimes *lovingly* referred to as “The Boat School.” [Not to mention James Bond also went to a similar boat school-- the fictional Britannia Royal Naval College.] So, as we are boat-schooling Dr. No, we thought it would be a fitting category to capture any resources, etc. we find useful as we embark on this educational portion of our journey.
We spent a lot of time researching our options regarding schooling for Dr. No, specifically because he’d be starting High School just as we starting our sailing adventure. We finally decided to enroll him in a Florida Homeschooling “Umbrella School” that is fully accredited, and helps us maintain his records. They will issue him accredited transcripts as well, which was important to us, and especially Dr. No.
Dr. No was as much a part of this discussion as James and I were, and our decision is based largely on his desires for his education. He wanted to be able to take AP and honors level classes, and while we’re confident that he would be getting the education with us homeschooling him on the boat, he wanted to maintain a more traditional school experience as well.
While we may eventually transition to a more traditional homeschooling curriculum as we go farther afield, we decided to use the Florida Virtual School for several of his classes this school year, while we were mostly cruising the East Coast, Bahamas, and the Caribbean… within a few days sail of the next island and a solid Internet connection.
9th Grade (2016-17):
Dr. No is taking 6 classes through FLVS: AP U.S. History; Honors Algebra 2; Honors Geometry; Honors English 1; Honors Biology; and French.
In addition I am teaching two classes in a traditional homeschooling manner: German 1, and Digital Media Arts.
As we’re new to cruising, we are going to be blogging about our impressions, pros/cons, etc of the FLVS program throughout this school year. We’ll post links here, but to make sure you don’t miss anything, be sure to follow our blog via email! Additionally, we’ll post information about Dr. No’s other classes that may be of interest to others.
The German textbook we’re using is: Deutsch Aktuell. It’s awesome because the publisher’s website has tons of free files and assets to use, and they’re DOWNLOADABLE (i.e. no Internet connection needed)! For every page of every chapter, there are audio files, so Dr. No and I sit down, read through the book, and listen to the audio files for the exercises for the pages. The online files also have additional exercises, and videos that we can use. It’s great. the publisher also has a more robust online service, more akin to Rosetta Stone or TEllMe More, if that interests you.
We do not speak German, but speak several other foreign languages; however, we figured for German 1, we could successfully teach Dr. No without being experts. We also have German-speaking friends, but were *hoping* to eventually find German-speaking cruisers for him to practice with once we got down to the islands! We expected to be cruising in Europe for German 2, so we figured we could get a tutor, enroll him in an immersion program… or just meet more german-speaking cruisers!
Digital Media Arts:
Stay tuned for updates on this subject!
20/10/2016 : The Boat School: Florida Virtual School…Month One
11/12/2016: The Boat School: An update on the First Semester