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Old 30-09-2015, 10:37   #16
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Re: Break in teenagers life

We have four children and the eldest have now moved ashore ready to commence at university. We have come across many teenagers sailing. Spending time sailing with the regular changing of locations leads to improved social skills with the children learning to adapt to different cultures and points of view and gaining significant tolerances. We noticed many years ago that the children adjust to just about any situation very naturally.
As for education; my wife is a teacher so that has been an enormous help.


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Originally Posted by Freshman View Post
We plan to make some longer 1-2 years sails with our 12 y.o. son in two years. Than he will be 14-15 and I wonder what influence it can make for his life?
Have you any experience in come back to school, friends after such break?
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Old 30-09-2015, 11:01   #17
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Re: Break in teenagers life

Many here may be shocked and outraged, but I think handing your kid over for 13+ years of continuous State indoctrination is a pernicious form of child abuse. I can't think of a better way to get them away from that institutional environment and introduce them to the real world than on a boat.
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Old 30-09-2015, 12:27   #18
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Re: Break in teenagers life

You might want to consider something like this instead:

Home - Class Afloat

Is cruising for 2 years your dream or his?

Unless he is "into it", you may be setting him up for trouble. Missing 2 years of high school could hurt academically, and socially. Having a family sometimes means making sacrifices, like living ashore so your son can have an uninterrupted high school experience. The time for family cruising is when they are little, and then again later, after their education is done.
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Old 30-09-2015, 13:15   #19
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Re: Break in teenagers life

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Originally Posted by hamburking View Post
You might want to consider something like this instead:

Home - Class Afloat

Is cruising for 2 years your dream or his?

Unless he is "into it", you may be setting him up for trouble. Missing 2 years of high school could hurt academically, and socially. Having a family sometimes means making sacrifices, like living ashore so your son can have an uninterrupted high school experience. The time for family cruising is when they are little, and then again later, after their education is done.
Of course it is my idea!
We are the parents to give our kids different opportunities, show the world, not to satisfy cravings.
I do not sacrifice myself when I am with my family, otherwise I would stay single.

Even educaton is interrupted it will not be given up. I can agree that 2 full years is too long but sm around year plus some months.....

After many years I have come to conclusion that there is nothing to hurry up in life. To pay tax sooner ? To spend life at work?
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Old 30-09-2015, 13:41   #20
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Re: Break in teenagers life

Quote:
Originally Posted by hamburking View Post
You might want to consider something like this instead:

Home - Class Afloat

Is cruising for 2 years your dream or his?

Unless he is "into it", you may be setting him up for trouble. Missing 2 years of high school could hurt academically, and socially. Having a family sometimes means making sacrifices, like living ashore so your son can have an uninterrupted high school experience. The time for family cruising is when they are little, and then again later, after their education is done.

I intend on taking my daughters cruising ( trying to convince mom ) and have done a lot of research including talking with Liza Copeland, author of " Just Cruising" "A Family Travels the World", that children are far more educated home schooled while cruising than children in "regular school". Many of them grades ahead of the children at the same age. I send my girls to a charter school now and check "everything" they are taught. I believe that the typical U.S. schools are doing a horrible job with children, they are being taught to pass certain tests that the federal government make them take and nothing about "real life"

Mike
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Old 30-09-2015, 13:57   #21
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Re: Break in teenagers life

I grew up as a teenager on a cruising sailboat. We left for a 5-year circumnavigation when I was 13 and my brother was 11. When we returned I went to college, and he went to high school.

Getting into college was far easier, that could be done on the basis of testing. Getting my brother back into high school without any schooling records was much more painful.

Being on the move all the time, and being away from friends was difficult as a teen, but then and now I wouldn't have it any other way. The learning opportunities and life skills that can be learned are hard to come by in our regular first-world, middle-class lives.

At 14 or 15 your child is old enough to stand watch. Have them do so. Make sure they learn how to sail the boat, and how to exercise judgement on when to reef, and when to wake the off watch, and all the other things that come with good seamanship. For this to work (and you know your child better than we do) there has to be trust in both directions. Have them participate in boat maintenance, and learn about wiring, and engines, and sails, and all the other myriad of things that go into making a floating community.

Make sure you have materials that can help educate them about the cultures you will encounter. Encourage them to learn the language(s) of the countries you will be visiting. With all the online tools that are now available, download when you can and use those tools when away from the net.

I could probably write a book in response to your initial question, but I'll leave it at that. Personally, from experience, I think it is a great, but challenging way to bring up a teen. If you have any specific questions or concerns feel free to ask them here or PM, would be more than willing to discuss further.
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Old 30-09-2015, 14:00   #22
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Re: Break in teenagers life

Hi,

I too want / dream dream dream of cruising but it is on hold till my children are out of university (5 more years) , I want to give them the opportunity to finish debt-free and start their own life in the direction they want.

when I asked my son (I thought he would be into it) what he thought of living on a boat,, crossing the ocean, etc..., he said sounds boring, so what you think is a dream maybe a nightmare for others

take this for whatever meaning you want
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Old 30-09-2015, 14:21   #23
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Re: Break in teenagers life

Consider this, if your teen is over 16 on the voyage he/she can begin accumulating sea time toward a license based on your voyaging. I obtained my 100T license shortly after my 18th birthday. That and an STCW 95 course gives you employment opportunities right out of the gate. Maybe they want to go to college, and maybe not, maybe they want to work on the sea, and maybe not, but having that time and experience opens a lot of doors beyond flipping burgers for minimum wage at McDonald's.
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Old 30-09-2015, 15:51   #24
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Re: Break in teenagers life

Quote:
Originally Posted by ryon View Post
Many here may be shocked and outraged, but I think handing your kid over for 13+ years of continuous State indoctrination is a pernicious form of child abuse. I can't think of a better way to get them away from that institutional environment and introduce them to the real world than on a boat.
That is hardly a shocking statement - the U.S. education system is a comparative joke. That doesn't negate the fact that each family and child has their own story, and own reasons why it may not be a good time to up and leave. Sometimes, they 'finally' have a little piece of stability, or they 'just' made friends after years of feeling isolated, or whatever.

I've managed to raise two girls who are probably more socially and globally aware than most of the people in the state we live in. It's a lot in how you approach parenting, and sailing away would be great and expand all minds involved even more, but it benefits the whole family (even if the family is a single mom and her kid), if each family member gets a moment of individual consideration first.
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Old 30-09-2015, 21:53   #25
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Re: Break in teenagers life

It'll surely ruin him and turn him into an irresponsible sail bum. Better to enroll him in a nice military academy.
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Old 30-09-2015, 22:01   #26
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Re: Break in teenagers life

"his friends will be in higher school" I expect that the "er" in "higher" was a typo. If it was intentional, well then you're mistaken. IF you do your job, which is to guide him to do the schoolwork that you get from the local school district before you go, he will probably complete it quicker than the students that remain in the local school. And when you return to the states he will probably be ahead of where he would have been had he remained in the local school. Remember, school classes can't proceed faster than the slower students. My wife and I cruised Mexico for 4 years and we have yet to hear of a cruising kid that wasn't ahead of his stateside peers.
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Old 30-09-2015, 22:06   #27
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Re: Break in teenagers life

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Originally Posted by jreiter190 View Post
It'll surely ruin him and turn him into an irresponsible sail bum. Better to enroll him in a nice military academy.
Actually there is more tongue and cheek truth in that statement than not!
Cruising just won't ruin the kids, I found that it ruins the parents!

It ruins them from the American Culture of buy, buy, buy...more more more.
It ruins them from the prevailing culture that tells them the only way to be happy is to HAVE what the wizards of marketing tell them they must have.
It ruins them from being a good little worker bee running on the treadmill.

My business partner tells me all the time that Cruising has "ruined me" and that I could never do a "real job" again...and you know what...he is dead right about that.
He remembers us in our "glory day" of the Boom years:
The 168 nights/yr sleeping at the Sheraton Hotel on Club level around the country.
The Platinum frequent flier status on 3 airlines.
The Dry cleaning bills for my stash of business suits I kept in 3 States.

4 Years of Cruising Mexico "ruined me" all right.
I haven't wore a real pair of shoes besides my "dress Crocs" now in 7years. The beauty is that my kids have figured out as teenagers what it took me to age 39 to figure out...they are way ahead of the curve in knowing what is important in life.
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Old 08-10-2015, 09:30   #28
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Re: Break in teenagers life

As the aforementioned son mentioned in Steve77's post, I can honestly say that the yearlong sailing trip taken during my sophomore year of high school was one of the best experiences I could have embarked upon. I believe I was 12 when we concocted this crazy idea of living on a boat for a year and exploring the Caribbean islands. My sister would have been 2 years old, so we had to consider that factor in this decision as well.

There were several contributing factors that helped us prepare as a family before this voyage commenced.

First, we were all involved, as a family, in the purchasing of the boat. This allowed for all of us to have input in which features we liked in the boat (e.g. - mom liked the galley, I would have my own cabin, dad liked the engine access, etc...). Once we all had a say in the boat and were all satisfied with our decision (1980 Moody 40 Center Cockpit), we purchased the boat and the fun stuff began. All of us worked on preparing the boat and had mentally taken ownership of the boat. If you're planning on taking a teenager on a sailing adventure, I could not stress this part enough. Let the teenagers develop some ownership of the idea. Let them earn sweat equity in the vessel. This will not only teach them basic boat maintenance and systems understanding, but it lets them feel that they are a part of this as much as you. Trust me, after grinding away rust from keel bolts for days in the bilge, I was ready to get under way and start this adventure as quickly as possible.

Secondly, we pulled into Luperon and stayed for three months. I know that Luperon is not known as a cruiser-friendly place these days, but in 1997 it was quite friendly and there were other cruisers there. Pulling in and staying through the last part of hurricane season allowed me to actually spend time with other cruisers and their families. I was the only teenager there (I was 14 at this point) for the most part, but there were other cruisers that were in their late 20's and early 30's that I could hang out with. Actually building relationships with other cruisers that were fun allowed me to develop and mature (although I thought I was mature enough...). In retrospect, I grew and matured a lot during this voyage, and I can't thank my parents enough for sharing this experience with me. It also allowed me time to start my first job of waxing boats for $.25 a foot. I know my dad said that it was $1 per foot, but I started at $.25 and after my first boat I decided to raise that rate to $.50 per foot. Remember, my target market audience was a bunch of broke cruisers... While that job was exhausting, it taught me a lot (like I never want to do that again!). But, it did help me develop and gave me something to do to earn money.

Third, I was home schooled through Texas Tech University for my sophomore year, and learned more during this year than any other time at public school. For example, my Physics course required going through the entire book all the way to quantum physics. When I returned, I learned that the Physics curriculum at my school ended at angular momentum, which was Chapter 3 of my book. I was required to learn more about Physics in one month than the students at my school were learning in one year. This is just one example, but every class was like this. I had learned much more than any of my peers that stayed ashore. Plus, I only had to do school for three hours a day (then it was boat work, snorkeling, exploring, etc...). This lifestyle was great. Sitting in a classroom was torture compared to just learning the material and getting on with your day.

Lastly, I was able to still communicate with my friends back home. I would write letters and call when I could. In today's world of social media and constant connectivity, I would recommend having them set up at least an Instagram account to document their travels. A blog would be the best. Give the teenagers some way to document their experiences so that they can still feel connected to their friends. Being able to communicate with my friends back home was paramount for me since I knew I would be going back in one year. With the app WhatsApp, calling or texting old friends is much easier since it's free if you can find WiFi.

I know that our cruising lifestyle changed my perspectives about life in general, but it also made me more aware of the world (something most teenagers desperately need). I learned so much more during this one year than could ever be taught in the classroom. I learned boat maintenance, Spanish, self reliance, social etiquette (or as much as a teenager is willing to learn), plus a myriad of other things that are eluding me at this moment...

If you are seriously considering bringing your teenagers along, let them feel involved with the decision and be as social as possible. When they're able to discover new friends that are sharing in their adventures it makes it a lot easier to leave the old ones behind for awhile.

Plus, on a side note, when they get back all the girls will love their tan!
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