Ready for a field trip?

I’m Launa, an elementary school teacher who retired early (in 2022) to write, read, and travel with my husband and travel partner, Justin. We’re on a big field trip!

As I travel, I’m researching how children are taught to read in different countries. Children in English-speaking countries have a long road to literacy due to the complex spelling of English, but English is still an alphabetic writing system with an underlying phonetic logic for the vast majority of its words. Teaching children to decode through phonics, so they can build a personal lexicon of words they have orthographically mapped and know on sight, is the most effective means to teach reading in any alphabetic writing system. I’m finding that teachers in countries where the language is written with an alphabet all use similar, phonics-based methods.

Field trip days with my young students were explosions of energy; new levels of thinking would emerge, making our classroom life so much richer and their journey toward literacy more exciting. My husband, Justin, and I want to build some of that field trip joy into our lives. We are learning so much during our full time travels; I’m taking notes and sharing them here. Thank you for coming along.