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Our family has lived in Mexico for the past two years. We have two girls, ages 12 and 10, who are homeschooling. Our four-year-old son started the 3rd grade of preescolar, the Mexican version of Kindergarten, at the end of August. He attends a public school and wears a jazzy little uniform. The baby is two and he has not started school. I want to keep him home with me as long as I can. We plan on homeschooling both of our boys when they are a little older, as we do our girls.
Homeschooling while living abroad is a little more difficult than homeschooling in our own country. For example:
- It is almost impossible to buy textbooks, workbooks, or other supplies locally, in our native language.
- Shipping curriculum is a possibility, but it would be expensive, very slow, and may never arrive.
- Other homeschoolers are hard to find in Mexico. Organizing homeschool gatherings, such as field trips, is pretty much impossible.
For some of the reasons above, our primary method of homeschooling our daughters is the Internet. With Google’s help we have found some great websites for homeschooling.
- Moby Max – Math, language arts, writing, and science – both girls are students here, but Taylor especially loves the new science curriculum.
- Duolingo for Schools – We are all learning Spanish – the school program is new and I am excited to try it out for our homeschool!
- StudyJams – This is one of Alexis’ choices for science. Alexis is a science geek and we are totally cool with that.
- Spanish Classes in New York – This is Alexis’ choice as well. Spanish is a requirement because we live abroad in Mexico.
- Mission US – Both of our girls love this for history and they have added two new interactive games since we started. I highly recommend as a parent.
- Chem4Kids – Alexis loves this site. She is highly interested in chemistry. Atoms, electrons, particles, and science experiments, she loves it all.
- 123 Teach Me Spanish – Taylor picked this one for learning Spanish. Our girls are different and like different programs.
- E-Learning for Kids – This site has a variety of lessons for no charge. Taylor has been using it for math and she likes it.
Unschooling in Mexico and Beyond
We also practice unschooling or life-learning in our homeschool. Since we can’t be a part of group field trips we take them as a family. Last year we spent a month in Belize. It was a fantastic and difficult adventure that we will never forget. In Mexico our kids have climbed a volcano, swam in a hot spring river, and seen baby sea turtles released into the Pacific. We love family field trips!
Another way our kids practice unschooling and life-learning is by socializing with our Bible congregation here in Mexico. We have folks of all different ages, colors, and backgrounds that we consider to be our family. The kids comment and have parts at our Bible meetings, and we all participate regularly in our Bible ministry which takes us all over the city of Uruapan.
You Can Homeschool Abroad Too
These are a few of the ways that we homeschool in Mexico. If you are ever in the position to move abroad and are concerned about homeschooling your children, don’t be. Do your research. Find out the rules and details before you go. That’s what we did before moving to Mexico. Some countries are stricter about homeschooling, but Mexico is not one of them. There are a variety of choices you can make and you may find yourself changing your homeschool direction with time. That is okay. As long as your kids are getting an education and are well-loved, everything will be fine.
Signing off, Tina, Mexico Mom