Today my family and I board an airplane to head for Austin, my beloved hometown, and from there, we’re heading out on a long road trip up and down the east coast.

This six-week trip, followed by a ten-day west coast tour soon after, is one of the main reasons we’re homeschooling this year. And next year, we’ll obviously be schooling on the go as well, and I’m thankful for the freedom and flexibility that homeschooling provides.

But I don’t think there’s a clear-cut, one size fits all answer to educating our kids. We take a year at at time, kid at a time approach, because we don’t know the future. But I’m a massive believer in lifelong learning, for all of us. Our brains are all constantly engaged in the world around us.

And it’s up to us to set up our surroundings so that we’re engaged in the beautiful, the fascinating, the absorbing. Studies have shown that in the end, it doesn’t matter so much where our kids learn as long as the home is a place that values learning, reading, exploring the world, and asking good questions. And when parents model this in their own life, even better.

• Read more: The Public School Parent’s Guide to Learning at Home

oregon drive

I’m keeping this idea in mind as we hit the road, when our kids’ place of learning becomes their backpacks, the back seat of the car, and the world outside their window. We hope to see the beguiling and beautiful between Austin and New York City, then back down again. We want to savor sights, sounds, textures, tastes, and smells.

And in the process, we constantly learn—because learning isn’t really about sitting at desks or getting a good grade on the worksheet. It’s about asking Why? and How? and then seeking out the answers. It’s being in love with learning, all while discovering that the more you know, the more you don’t know.

It’s a beautiful process, this discovery. I love sharing it with my family.

p.s. – The title of this post reminds me of this scene.