Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Checking out Prague zoo

We went to Prague zoo to see what it was about. I usually dont like going to zoos because its a bit like visiting a prison. However it can be a really educational experience and in a weird way a zoo with a good standard could be good for the animal world as it spreads awareness and teaches you biology and about the world.

Most of the animals in Prague zoo have a good arrangement and enough space. The elephants even had a baby in the zoo which is a good sign for that. The Prague zoo is huge and for little feet it can be quite exhausting. A half day trip just seeing a few animals and play areas will be more than enough. The zoo is not expensive so you can come here several times. A tip: Mondays are happy mondays so its extra cheap!

We will most likely do more trips to the zoo this summer so we will post the dates in our calendar so check it out if you want to join us.

A viewing-tower

Beautiful tiger in a czech jungle!

One of the many play areas

Tibetan prayer wheels.

One area looks a little like in India.

Dont keep an eye on the kids for a sec and they will try to get in!

Up close with a hippo.

An otter eating a living fish - just like in real life.

We like Orangutans..they are very social..

..and not so different from us.

Spring time in Prague - full of flowers!

Fruit bat cave..in Bali we had a pet bat actually.

Huge play tower.. we had to put a stop to the visit.. it was too hot, and we will come back soon!

The chair lift is a little scary.. it looks like something left from the communism where you wonder if a screw will actually come loose..

Short video of the chair lift and some of the zoo.

Do you have any questions about Prague worldschooling? please comment below or send us a message.

A long walk to the observatory in Prague

This weekend there was a lot of activities for kids in Prague as it was "kids" weekend. It was hard to choose from all the free activities that were on offer but in the end, we thought that the observatory would be a good idea because we wanted to check if we could arrange a workshop with them in english for the worldschoolers. We went all the way from Brevnov mostly on foot with kids on scooters and parents running after. The observatory is located at the top of a mountain called "Petrin". You can go by funicular to the top.

We came from another direction (Pohorelec) where we had a magnificent view of the beautiful old part of Prague. We took a break for a picnic under a tree and then continued. On the way up we found a small museum called "The magic cavern" with mystical paintings of naked fantasy characters..like a unicorn-mermaid! At the ground floor there was a room with sofas where the children could quench their thirst with lemonade and the parents with wine. It was nice to escape the heat for a while, and well worth the 70 czech crowns which we paid for the entrance.

The observatory had kids activities which were specific tasks to find out how the star constellations looked like, how a comet worked, why there were solar eclipses, and where you could try the telescope. Just because it was cloudy it was directed towards a tower far away.

There was thunder in the air. We had just enough time to complete all activities and hurry towards the funicular before the rain poured down. 

Are you interested in a worldschooling workshop for kids in the observatory? Get in touch with us! I think we need to be a few more families in order to arrange something there.

A film that shows the lovely promenade and things at the Observatory

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Join us for an excursion for Prague Zoo!

We will go to Prague zoo on monday 30th may. We will meet by the entrance at 1030 - if you want to come along please message us today latest so we know whos coming.

Prague zoo is amazing for kids, its huge and has many play areas. We think this will be a full day excursion so bring snacks and drinks if you want

More info about Prague zoo here


(Picture is borrowed from Prague zoos website)

A little excursion to Obora Hvezda

As a regular activity we go on an excursion to the nature every week with our newly started initiative Prague worldschoolers. The forest "Obora Hvezda"is amazing to go on walks in and build teepees in. Obora Hvezda is in Prague 6, towards the airport, which you can take tram No. 22 and 25 to. Just outside is a "traffic playground "where children can learn to ride a bike or ride a scooter in traffic, it is a kind of mini city with traffic lights and playground, but this time we were out in the woods so long, 5 hours I think, so we didnt have time and energy for that this time. The forest is so intensily green it almost hurts your eyes. The ivy covering the ground and the trees makes it look like a green sea. In the midst of it, there is a large playground which is great also for picnics.


Henry and his friend Maya feeling at home in this little house.


Our building project.


Someone is living here!

Help, a crocodile!

The pattern of the oak leaves is so beautiful! In the excursions we also talk about what we have discovered and how nature works so that the children get to know why the leaves have these patterns. 

Friday, 27 May 2016

Join us for Mozart!

We are going to a concert at 10.30 on june 22nd.

If you want to come you have to message sopkova@pkf.cz to reserve spaces.

Find out more at http://www.pkf.cz/en/118-now-just-like-a-dream-come-true-let-s-meet-up-with-mozart-too/

Willy wonkas 3D-factory at MakersLab

Makerslab -  is the place where you can be creative with 3D printing - in the bottom floor of the Paralelni Polis building. They arranged an event with chocolate printing which we of course couldnt resist! The 3D-printer keeps a temperature of 34 c degrees when it spits out the chocolate in the desired shape, according to the instructions it got. The kids are keen on learning about 3d-printing (and the parents as well!) so we will collect families for a customized course, and when we have got enough participants we can make this real. Do you want to go on the 3d course? Send us a message on the message form on the right hand side. The event was streamed live on Youtube.

A short video about our visit!

Eating a chocolate key!

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Screening of Class Dismissed on Paralelni Polis

We have been honoured that we could meet the film maker Jeremy Stuart and his lovely family. When great people come together some great stuff happens. Together with Ondrej and Martin from the Bitcoin café Paralelni Polis, (that have a screen in their lecture hall), and in cooperation with the czech unschooling group Svobodna Uceni we arranged a screening of the film Class dismissed with time for questions with the film maker afterwards.

Class dismissed is a very inspiring film that I think is good to show also to those who are skeptical about homeschooling. In the film we follow a family who made the decision to take their children out of school. The film takes up a for me unexpected issue - to "deschool". You have to unlearn how to learn as homeschooling / unschooling is a completely different kind of thinking and it is not at all easy if you as a parent is stuck with the school way of thinking, and especially for the children who have become accustomed to doing what they are told to do. For unschooling to be successful you have to put aside the traditional values ​​of "musts" and be an involved parent and mentor. Getting there is not easy at all, but the results are fantastic.

It is truly inspiring to see how unschooling works in the US and all the opportunities that are there. It is sad that unschooling is more or less difficult in most of the countries in the world for the residents. As I come from Sweden and had to leave because its criminal and socially unacceptable to unschool there I know very few people that are swedish and actually unschool - because they had to leave and because we learn in school that there is only one way to learn - through school. But unschooling on the other hand is becoming more and more popular much thanks to the internet, and I really see the Czech republic as a good place to unschool (and a good alternative for Swedes) even though the locals have some trouble with the government - the same doesnt apply for the foreigners - especially not if you are resident of a different country. Here in Prague, there is already a Czech unschooling organization , and me and Katie would like to start a cooperative, similar to the one in the film here, for expats and local unschoolers which we hope that our initiative Prague Worldschooling will lead to.

Jeremy presents the film.

A great evening in great company!
Do you want to see the film?  Do it HERE

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Hammocks in Prague

An aspiring hammock-model I think!

One of our businesses is hammocks. I love the hammock business. Its nice to provide the world with such an essential for relaxation!

The cotton hammocks are produced in Colombia and they are not made of any type of cotton - they are made of recycled cotton that was previously clothes coming from the US. Cotton production uses up huge lot of water. Also organic cotton. So recycled cotton is actually kinder to the environment.

Raya Sunset hammock near the lake to our house in Sweden. We had to leave as homeschooling is criminal there.

These lovely hammocks are made in my designs in a small production in Colombia where a lot of people have worked for a long time because they are happy with their job. We regularly go to Colombia to check that the working environment and high quality is maintained. We also have a production in India where our travel hammocks and hammock and stand sets are made in a proper factory in the south. We created our own brand "Hamaca" and started selling it last year.

We have a warehouse in Sweden for our swedish shop Hamaca and one in England for our english shop Hammockheaven from where we send hammocks to all over the world. We are looking for resellers in Czech republic, if you are interested in this and want to sell through a webshop or regular shop please contact us here. We make it really easy for webshops - all data and pictures are ready to upload and you dont even need to keep stock if you want.

Anyway, we just had some new hammocks sent here to Prague, that needs photographing. We would love some help from worldschoolers with "modelling" in them - basically just relax in them - so that we have photos of not just ourselves on the website. We have quite a lot of hammocks and stands that we will sell cheaply afterwards at 50% off. So if you want a hammock that nobody else have here that is made consciously you can grab a great bargain now. The hammocks are stored in Brevnov near the end of the Ladronka-park.

I plan to have a worldschooler hammock picnic next Saturday here in our garden or in Ladronka where I can show how to hang the hammocks and all the different kinds of them, where they can be tried out, played in, photographed and sold to the lucky ones.

Do you want to buy hammocks or come to that picnic? Please send a message on the box on the right hand side! Once we had enough feedback we will decide on the date!

Worldschoolers relaxing in our garden in Prague!

A trip to the castle in Prague with worldschoolers

Yesterday we meet up with homeschooling expats / worldschoolers here in Prague. Everyone else except me that is Swedish were Americans. They live here more or less permanently, except a family that was visiting Prague and that had made the film "Classed dismissed" about homeschooling which we'll see on Paralelni Polis on Sunday. There was a family who came here who had 8 children...8! That are homeschooled. I wish I had the drive to be a little more organized. I think it is hard as it is to home educate just two children.

Wenceslaus Church.

Funny Selfie-tourist with funny castle guard that was so still that he didnt even blinked.

We were actually suppose to see the Bohemian crown jewels but the queue was 3 hours long so we skipped it and went for a walk instead. The castle area is huge! There is a lot to see that we didnt see so I think we will come back soon. It was a hot and sunny day so really I have brought a ball and a picnic though I didnt think of it. Everyone else had a picnic of course. We wandered around the various gardens, my children went on scooters and played with sticks. With a banging migraine I was very agreeable and promised them ice creams on the way back, by the entrance. (they were delicious)

Here we found a lovely area for kids to run around on!

There were birds of prey which were under rehabilitation at the castle. They were displayed so that people could take pictures, which I think financed the rehabilitation, but I'm a little hesitant if it really is rehabilitation when I saw this poor little hawk that was trapped in the short string and looked extremely stressed out that he could not get to where he was. Or what do you think?

Friday, 20 May 2016

Science festival in Prague

Me and Katie visited the science festival yesterday with 4 of our 5 kids. It was a full day trip to the end of the red metro line. The fair area in Prague is huge. There was also a massive food fair in another building and there was a lot of people and quite noisy. The science fair is free and will be on the whole weekend. It was very busy but interesting. Most of the people we talked to that exhibited was very helpful and informative. We have seen some stuff that we havent seen before.

The kids particularly liked the drawings that you could transfer to a tablet and interact with. We also really liked the lego technics robot scorpion and the robot that could solve the rubix cube!

Have a look at my short film of our experience yesterday!

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Join us on a playful afternoon in the forest! on 27/05


We will go to see the crown jewels in the castle instead at 1:30pm today - if you want to come along please send a message to Caroline or Katie on Facebook!


We will meet and play and have a picknick in Obora Hvezda

Bring whatever you need to be comfortable in the forest and meet us at 1:30 here! Let us know if you are coming by sending us a message on the message box on the right hand side. Please include your phone number so that we can reach you in case we cant find you.

A Short Guide To Homeschooling in Prague

Having left Sweden 14 months ago to travel the world, we have found that a lot of our travels has been a search for a place to live and work that is homeschooling friendly and where there are great alternative schools. We have now found Prague.

In this ex-communist country, there are quite a few homeschooling families and many expat families who have moved here for a bunch of good reasons. It is so good that we are thinking that it is a good idea to settle here.
I think that Prague is a great option for Swedish families who wish to homeschool and are therefore forced to flee the Swedish state. Many educational refugees from Sweden choose neighbouring Finland or Norway, but I have never been interested in moving to these countries partly due to the climate, partly due to the high taxes and partly because there are not enough activities and meetups for homeschooling families.

If you have to leave Sweden, all of Europe is within a few hours flight, so it doesn't make so much difference in terms of travel cost or distance if you are in a neighbouring country or a short flight away, so you may as well look for the place that fits the most criteria.

We went to the Czech Republic first and foremost because we heard that there are many libertarians here , and therefore people who are likely to practice peaceful or respectful parenting and people who disagree with government schooling.

There are about 500 Czech homeschooling families. There are also many foreigners who live here, of which about 8000 are from the United States. I have heard there are some Swedish families here but I don't know and haven't met them yet. There are several groups of homeschoolers here and according to those we have met, there is a never-ending variety of activities and courses available that you can attend.

What are the rules in Czech Republic
The Czech Republic allows homeschooling, but residents need to be enrolled in a school that is homeschooling-friendly. Once you are in the syatem, the government will want to make twice yearly inspections in Czech so it may not be interesting for those who don't want to learn the language. Moreover, for residents, one must write a letter and tell me why you want to home school and some other formalities. For a foreigner, the same rules do not apply. Many who live here can fulfil the state requirements by signing up to a distance learning school such as Clonlara . Alternatively they can be resident somewhere else. But if you are coming from Sweden you need to establish residency outside of Sweden to be clear of the Swedish states grasp. Some options are: The UK, another Nordic country or in Estonia where you can get E-residency whichmight also be useful if you are self-employed . Rules change all the time, and the information I have provided is what people have said to me so I recommend double checking everything and coming here for a visit to find out more.

Prague Homeschooling Facebook Groups

There are many different Homeschooling Groups in Prague. There are probably groups outside of facebook. Here are some examples of groups that I have joined:
The Czech group you can find HERE .
The group of expats can find HERE
Group libertarian hemskolare you can find HERE

Activities and Courses in Prague

There are, as I mentioned, a huge variety of courses and activities in Prague for children. Here are links to some of these.
At Clas Acts , one can find various courses for children from toddlers to big kids in English and Czech.
Kids in Prague - Here you will find activities and courses also
International Scouts in Prague Soccer for children in English
Creative workshops children in English - Muddum
Kiddum - Lego School, robot construction and Lego play area
Malostranska Beseda - Art, music, children's corner.
Prague activities for cool kids - facebook group for children's activities.
Galerie gud - An art gallery where kids get to be creative.
Makerslab - keeps the house in Parelni Police. This is a 3D lab courses.

Wonderful Parks with Playparks and Beer Gardens

In Prague, it is common with pubs next to the playgrounds. Of course, you do not drink beer every time you make a play but it is very tempting to do so. The beer is good and cheap here and costs about 10 kronor ($1.30) at the cheaper places. There is usually coffee and food there if you do not want beer. We take a picnic and fill bottles with water when we go out. Tap water is fine to drink. There are many places with picnic tables, and if you forget to bring food, you can buy pies and pizzas for about 10kronor ($1.30).
Ladronkaparken - It is quite close to the old town and has playgrounds, cozy beer garden with restaurant and ideal for cycling and roller skating in.
Matejska Pout - Has a large amusement park in a huge park where there are many play areas and beer gardens.
Gutovka - has a huge playground with climbing walls, a skateboard park and a restaurant. You often meet home schoolers there.

Some Private Schools in Prague

Just because you don't like being forced to attend a school with a government curriculum, it doesn't mean that one does not like all schools. It might be good to know that there are many private schools here and that if the school turns out not to be suitable, it is not dangerous to remove your child from that school. Shouldn't it be like that in Sweden?

A detailed article about international schools can be found here .
Školy Hlásek - A school with 30 teachers to 100 students run by anarcho-capitalists who practices near parenting.
School Muj Project - a small school that focuses more on children's individual needs.
The International Montessori school of Prague International school of Prague
Montessori school You & Me .

Finding accomodation in Prague links

It is easy to find accommodation in Prague. One must be quick, new properties are listed all the time and an appartment found on the morning can be rented the same afternoon. If you want to find housing, I recommend getting here first and stay at an Airbnb.
These are some good property websites. You have to commit to a year and many agents take a months rent as a fee.
Expats.czHome Sweet Home
Sreality - this one is the best
Airbnb - to find housing for shorter period of time from a few days to what values ​​and you feel comfortable with.

Handy Links

Here are some useful links that I've found:
Slevomat - Prague "groupon". Here you can find a variety of discounted activities.
Tesco in Prague - shop online and get delivered for just 2 euros. You can enter the product name in English.
The nanny-state index to see how free you are in the Czech Republic

Plusses And Minuses Of Living And Home School in Prague

There are, of course, good and bad sides to all countries so here is a list of plusses and minuses in Prague.

+ Activities, culture, internet, proximity to family and friends
Of the countries we have visited during the year, Indonesia (Bali) has been one of our top choices for home school in which there are many who do it, and many entrepreneurs who move there because they want to live in paradise. Bali lacks fast internet, and it's too far to visit friends and relatives in Europe. It also lacks cultural and intellectual activities. There are museums and art galleries and courses but nowhere near to the same extent as in Europe. For a small city of 1.2 million inhabitants, Prague has a lot offer. The distance - short flights to Sweden and the UK - are also OK.

+ A modern country with high living standards
The Czech Republic is a country that has a fairly free market which has developed at a furious pace just like the other ex-Communist countries in its vicinity. I dare say that there is a higher standard of living in the Czech Republic and Poland than in Sweden. Internet is around 20mb.

+ Nice for the self-employed
There are several co-working spaces for entrepreneurs and although the Czech tax system is a bit complicated, it is still a better deal than the Swedish firm the best course would be to run a business from eg Estonia where you can get E-residency. There are multiple coworking spaces-such as the Paralelni Police which can be nice if you want some companionship and a pleasant working environment. It is quite cheap to rent premises here also.
+ Beauty and nature People move to Prague to move to a city with incredible beautiful architecture (in the old parts), and where the more modern parts are pleasant too. The city has an incredible number of parks, and some of them are very big so it feels like you are in the middle of nature. Another + is that the air does not feel contaminated. Unfortunately, it is a problem we have known there are many other places where we've wanted to home school such as in London or Bucharest and many cities in Asia.

+ The climate
We have tried to live in countries with a tropical climate and the same climate all year round. It's a little sad actually that it's the same. I think the tropical heat is OK but the husband does not like to sweat all the time. Prague is a little hotter than the Sweden and it rains less here than where we lived in Sweden. However, it can be very hot in summer. There are real winters. You can go skiing in the mountains located 1.5 hours from here.

+ Proximity to the alpine slopes
Take the car 1.5 hours you'll reach in St Anton in Austria. Or you can ski in the south of Poland which is not far either.

- The distance to the sea
I like the sea. I do not know how I would cope with being away from the sea. Though there are lakes and rivers here with beaches and you can drive to the Croatian Riviera in about 7 hours.

- The language
It can be difficult to learn Czech (as an adult), but you can if you want, of course. Many Czechs speaks good English and many activities and courses for children are for expat population and the Czechs who want their children to learn English. I think it is required that homeschooling Swedes teach their children English early because basically all materials to home school which are available on the internet and youtube is in English and many Homeschool groups are English speaking.

+ Cheap
If you want to get good value for money, you should choose a country in Eastern Europe, Southern Europe or Southeast Asia where the cost of living is lower. In that way, you can afford to have only one parent working, which allows the other parent to focus on the homeschooling a bit more.