Back in Argentina – El Bolson

After our climbing adventure in Cochamo, (remember here), we decided to head back across the border into Argentina. Honestly, I couldn’t get out of Chile fast enough. I really don’t know why so many people rave about that country. It’s become my least favorite place to be, (there, I said it!). Not that there aren’t things to appreciate, like the raw beauty, but it’s expensive as hell and just not our cup of tea.

Anyway, we’re back in the ‘Big A’ and posted up in the small town of El Bolson.

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El Bolson is a cool little hippy town in Northern Patagonia. It’s a spot we’ve been wanting to check out and so far we really dig it.

Below, Soleil making  friends with a local…

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So, lately we’ve been receiving a lot of emails from people asking what we plan to do about Soleil’s education. After asking they proceed to weigh in with their opinion. These range from public schooling to homeschooling to unschooling.

Just to set the record straight, we are going to homeschool Sol. We plan to continue living on the road, from country to country, so public school isn’t an option. And neither of us are big fans of unschooling. We’re confident that we can give her a world class education, so there it is.

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Now, having said that, it’s recently been pointed out to me that I need to up my home schooling game.

Stevie and I have divided up the education and it’s her responsibility to teach Soleil Spanish and French, and my job to teach English. Based on the video below, it’s become clear that I am failing.

 Click here to watch the video

I guess it doesn’t help that I’ve only been speaking to her in Spanish. Ok, so noted. From now on it’s all English.

In other news, I’ve been killing it in the other subject I’m responsible for, PE. Sol is getting an A+ in all her Phys Ed.

Below, out for a day out rock climbing near El Bolson…

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Someone get’s pretty fired up when it comes to climbing days!

Brazos Arriba!

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It’s fun to watch her progress. For someone who trips over her own feet when walking in a straight line, I can’t believe the skill she has when she starts climbing up. She’s a natural, like her Mama!

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I’ve worked out a good system of spotting her. I’ve got a loose tethered rope on the back of her harness. She climbs on her own and if she falls I tug the rope with one hand and catch her like a football in the other. This should work for a little while longer… until she gets bigger.

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Sol after a hard day of climbing…

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Stevie working on her project…

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In other news, Kiki just celebrated her 14th birthday! In case you haven’t been following the story, this is pretty much a miracle. Back in September of 2012, the vet in Lima gave Kiki 6 months to live, and Stevie was crushed, (remember here). We’re going on a year and a half later and Kiki is still trucking along!

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While here in El Bolson we also ran into our overlanding pals, Doug and Marcia. They’ve been cruising around in this red Sprinter. It was great to catch up with them, finally.

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Also on the road in a more than interesting rig is our pal Brian.

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We had a couple good nights partying with these guys and they have talked us into going BACK into Chile to check out the Futaleufu river just south of here. Oh well, this river has been on my tick list since I was a kid so I’m stoked to go, even if it is in Chile!

-TREE

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Comments

  1. SO AWESOME, SOLEIL, “”A NATURAL “” For Sure !!! YOUR SPECIAL, IN SO MANY WAYS !! Hey Isn’t it Time For A Sibbling !!!!! ??

  2. Madrigal Madri says:

    Pura vida !!! muy Linda

  3. Erin Randall Anthony says:

    Precious little pumpkin! You are giving her such a wonderful life! Best of all, she gets to be with you all of the time. Just awesome!

  4. Yeah, totally get your reasoning about Chile. HOWEVER you’re going to love the area around Futaleufu!
    Yee-ha SOL! Love the Climbing Goddess to be.
    Felicitaciones de cumpleaños for Kiki! Fluff-monster is doing great too. 🙂
    xxxLorraine

  5. Cathy Fanandakis Alexander says:

    Fantastic, what a little dare devil that is so great!!!!!

  6. Cris Dearce says:

    You’ve inspired us to get our 9 month old a seat for my bike…Now, can u please explain how you got her to keep her helmet on?

  7. Why are you not a fan of unschooling? So you plan to buy curriculum and sit Soleil down at a table for several hours a day? We are starting our adventure in 65 days starting in Colombia and are unschooling our 5 year old.

    • Hey Rob,

      There are aspects of unschooling that we appreciate (like pursuing the child’s interests and creating opportunities to explore them) and will surely incorporate them into our sui generis style of schooling, but I believe that there are benefits to providing some structure and discipline–and, yes, even to sitting at a desk sometimes for a few hours a day. That being said, Soleil’s curriculum and our approach to her education will be anything but rote. I absolutely LOVE learning in both the academic and experiential forum, and I don’t think that the two models are mutually exclusive. In fact, I think that a creative combination of the two is a sure fire way to instill a passion for learning that will last a lifetime. At least that’s the goal!

      I’m currently downloading books on child-led education, homeschooling, etc… If you have any recommendations, I’d love to hear them! Soleil is only a year and four months old right now, so I have some time before I have to prepare lesson plans, but I figure it’s never too soon to get inspired.

      Please stay in touch. I definitely think that belonging to a network of parents who are making alternative choices that better suit their child’s individual needs is probably one of the most valuable tools we can have.

      And congrats on starting your adventure!!! Colombia is absolutely amazing. Let us know if you have any questions along the way. Hopefully our paths cross somewhere down the line.

  8. Rhonda Delameter says:

    that is the coolist thing, I wish my parents would have do that for me when I was that age.

  9. Some of our good friends have two boys who were raised in the US. Their mother is French/English and the father only English. For a long time, the boys treated the languages as interchangeable, flowing in and out of French and English without recognizing the difference. Now, they are fluent in both languages. As Rhonda said, what a gift for Soleil!

    All to say – keep up the good work! You guys are courageous to raise a child outside the normal structure. Sol won’t be a very good factory worker, but she’s going to be brave, creative, confident and amazing and probably end up running her own business (and future) on her own terms. And that is what it’s all about.

    Have fun in Chile on the river!

  10. Peggy Ditch-Langdon says:

    The schooling of your child is your business and it sure sounds like you two know what you are doing. Sol is going to be so well rounded and appreciative of the world around her as she gets older that it will astonish those nay sayers! Keep up the excellent work..

  11. Sol in her climbing harness (less helmet) is so so so so great! (and the next photo with helmet also great)
    That will be a wonderful image of her, forever. Wow love it. It’s so very expressive. And she seems so capable, like she so casually tied her own figure-8 knot.

    weeee so dang cute

    lizD

  12. Stevie, maybe you already know them: discovershareinspire. From the States, somewhere in Central America. 6 kids. Not sure about homeschooling/unschooling (maybe both, kind of like what you say in your comment) but they have some interesting posts on education on their website. Maybe good people to connect with on the subject (if you haven’t already).

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