We are counting down the days until homeschool convention season! After attending last year, I learned a few things about planning to make it an even better experience. The main thing we found was that it was helpful to make our van into our “home base” and not have a bunch of stuff to carry around. Following is a list of essentials:
- A cooler to keep in the car with drinks and snacks for my ever-hungry boys. (My oldest informed me today that a cheeseburger and fries is a snack, not a meal. Have mercy!) Whenever we need a break or some fresh air, it will be nice to have some things available without having to drive anywhere. One convention last year had affordable food, but some convention centers cater it themselves, and even a small snack could be pricey. I’d rather save the money for curriculum and other goodies.
- Comfy shoes. ‘Nuff said!
- A couple of tote bags. My boys each carry their own bag with a tablet for taking notes in the filmmaking sessions and, have I told you how they accumulate lots of free pens and pencils? It is also helpful for me to split up catalogs and other handouts so my bag doesn’t get too heavy. Boys are great that way 🙂
- A printout of the session schedule and a wish list of curriculum to look at in the vendor hall. That “game plan” is a must. The halls are super-crowded, and if you plan to split up, it’s vital to know where everyone is headed, and allow time for snacks (see number 1).
- Address labels to save having to write my address over and over if I sign up for vendor mailing lists or enter giveaways -or- my kids can use those new pens to practice writing our address and fill out the cards for me (that counts as “school,” right?)
- A camera. I wished for one many times last year, and since my phone is not intelligent, I need to bring a separate camera along to record our fun. Plus, the authors of some of our books are like celebrities to my kids. My son actually contemplated trying to get his science book autographed (weird homeschoolers).
- Above all, bring your excitement and plan to be refreshed and energized. You will bring so many great ideas back home with you!