These parents have truly stuck a finger up to the UK curriculum after pulling their kids out of school in order to teach them what they can’t learn in a classroom.
Chris and Donna Jackson, form Hertfordshire, found themselves stuck in the cycle of being unhappy in the present while dreaming of a brighter future.
So, they decided to break the cycle, sell everything they own and take their two children, Ellie, eight and six-year-old Miley, on a trip around the world, on a shoestring.
The school of life, as they call it, can arguably be more important than Year 8 algebra.
The couple, who have two daughters, realised they weren’t spending enough time with each other, or their children, due to their demanding jobs.
25-year-old Chris is a former paramedic for the London Ambulance Service and said his girls learnt more on their trip than they would’ve in school.
The family set off in July 2017 and since then, have visited five countries, sharing their experiences to more than 100,000 followers on Instagram.
In Costa Rica, they were treated to the sight of active volcanoes, and Chris told the Mirror Online:
How much can you learn about volcanoes in a classroom, compared to when you can see one right in front of you?
It’s the experience of a lifetime.
Chris explained his wife ‘was studying to be a paediatric nurse, and we never saw each other, and never spent time with the kids, so we thought ‘let’s go on the road’.
34-year-old Donna said:
People tend to take things for granted and reach old age talking about the things they should’ve been doing, rather than the things they were doing.
It’s such a material world, people are giving their kids iPads, which they stare at for hours, but we’re teaching them to the things we want them to know.
Apparently the girls’ school is very on board and the headteacher actually often likes and comments on the family’s posts.
Chris, who posts videos on the family’s JellyBeanTV Youtube channel, said:
People always keep saying to me they really want to travel, ‘it sounds amazing, but I’m scared’.
I’d say don’t wait – there’s no good time to do it, there’s no right moment in life, the only person to affect change is you.
However, the family haven’t been living lavishly out there, they’ve been staying in hotels in exchange for exposure on social media.
They’ve travelled all around the US, visiting Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, Utah, Florida, Philadelphia and New York.
In October they visited Costa Rica for two weeks as well as going on a cruise in the Bahamas.
The family are currently in Canada, and Donna said:
It’s been great, it’s been very stressful as any travel is, but it’s been amazing.
It’s great to show the girls the world and teach them things we want them to learn.
They’d planned to visit the Virgin Islands but were halted by Hurricane Irma.
When they returned to the US, Chris was detained by border control who couldn’t understand what the family were doing.
They were asking what we were doing, they said no one with kids moves around this much.
All four of them will return to the UK next month, but it won’t be the end of their journey.
They’ll soon set off on a second adventure for another 12 months to see Vietnam, Cambodia and China, in June.