Worldschooling Spotlight

Get to Know the Falin Family

Watch the Video Above or Read the full interview below!

Meet the Falin family – a family of 5 who woke up one day and realized they were miserable. Like so many, they were living the American dream, and had everything that society says you need to be happy… but they weren’t. The morning routine, the homework, no quality time – it was all taking a huge toll on them.

When they discovered Worldschooling their lives changed almost overnight. After attending a community summit they were hooked. They returned home to the US and sold everything, on a mission to be free, to escape the daily grind and to truly start living.

Their journey has taken them around the world and as a family they have had experiences that their kids will remember for a lifetime.  Facing challenges together as a team, watching their kids become citizens of the world and learning through incredible experiences has been life changing for this energetic and adventurous family.

Introduce Yourself

Sandi Falin

We’re Sandi & Jimi Falin, and we are a family of five from Nevada USA. We have three kids and have been traveling for a couple of years now.

When did you start world schooling?

Jimi Falin

Three years ago, we sold everything we had moved into an RV and traveled the US for a little bit and then fell in love with Southeast Asia and international travels. And we’ve been doing a little bit of both ever since, and it’s been wonderful. Amazing. We love it.

Why did you start world schooling?

Sandi Falin

Well, we were miserable.

Jimi Falin

We hated the precondition life that we were supposed to live, that society says you should be happy if you have all this stuff.

Sandi Falin

We had two have our kids in school and public school here in Las Vegas. And you know, I think we just got to a point where we go “is everybody this miserable? Is the daily grind this horrible for everybody? Because this is not fun.” We didn’t sign up have kids to be going through the stress of every morning, our kids are freaking out. They don’t want to get dressed, you know, the whole, we’re running late.

Jimi Falin

Get in the car, eat your breakfast, pack your lunch, oh my god, do your homework.

Sandi Falin

So then you get the kids from school, and then it starts all over again now with getting the homework done, making dinner, trying to actually spend some time with the kids. We did that for a couple of years, and it was just.. you just think that’s what you’re supposed to do, because that’s what everybody else does in your neighborhood, and that’s what we did when we were kids. Until we were introduced to Worldschooling, and I think that just seriously opened our eyes and our minds to an alternative. How come nobody talks about this?

How did you discover worldschooling?

Sandi Falin

I asked to join the Facebook page. I got approved. I started looking, and I yelled, “JIMI! You’ve got to see what these people are doing!”

Jimi Falin

We went to a conference, and we saw other people doing it, and it kind of took the mystique away from it and showed us that this is possible, and these people, they’re having a great time. And so we fell in love with it. We came home, set a date, and then a couple of months later, we sold everything we owned and moved into the RV full time.

What did you do to prepare to worldschool?

Sandi Falin

From when we heard about it, we went to the summit, and then we pretty much sold everything a month later!

Jimi Falin

We already had the RV, and we’d always been toying with moving into it, and then once we saw the light on the other side, we’re like, “oh, it’s on now!”

Sandi Falin

We met families that were living in a van and traveling that way, people that were in an RV, people that were living in Airbnbs, all over the world, and I was like “we are out of here!.

How did friends and family react when you started worldschooling?

Sandi Falin

Everyone always knew I was a little different. And I do off the wall things and never go by the book. So no one was really surprised when I said what we were planning on doing.

Jimi Falin

I think a reaction also was, “Wow, I wish I could do that.” That was a lot of people’s reactions. I don’t think we ever got any real negative reactions from it. I think everybody was like, “wow, I wish I could do that. I wish I had the gusto to pull the trigger and do it.”

Sandi Falin

The only thing that we do have is his mom is not 100% onboard that the kids aren’t in school and the traditional way of learning. So if she has the kids, she’ll do little trivia questions with them to see where they’re at and that they know stuff. And the funny part is, every time she does that, they kill it. They blow her away… and then some. On the flip side, they’ve seen so much more of the world than she ever has at 65 years old. So I’m like, “well, you know, they’re not doing bad!”

What questions and fears did you have about worldschooling before you started?

Sandi Falin

Some of my questions were, “are we going to be able to educate our kids?” You don’t want to do anything wrong with your kids; you want to make sure you give them the best chances and possibilities for their future and all of that. So I think that was one of my biggest fears was, are we going to be good teachers for them? Are we going to be able to provide what we think they need to know?

Jimi Falin

And we still struggle with it a little bit, but not as much as we used to in the very beginning. But, you know, it’s this whole deprogramming of what we think they need to know and certain points and all this crazy conditioning that we have. And we’re still struggling with it because we come from the system, you know, so we’re like “our little guy’s not reading yet, we better get on it! But then we’re like, just take a deep breath and relax. When we were getting ready to do this, I was geeking out online following all these families that are doing it, and we were following BumFuzzle. They were coming through Las Vegas when we were still in the house, so I sent him an email and said I’d love to meet up with you if you’re stopping nearby. They agreed to do an overnight at the dry lake bed. And so we got to go out there and meet up with them.

Sandi Falin

At the time, I was having those fears about this… How do we do that? How do we wrap our heads around that? How do we educate the kids? And Jimi was like, “Come on, let’s go!” Was he ready to go yesterday? And I was like, but what if… but what if… And then I met these guys.

Jimi Falin

And so two things that stood out to me with these guys. I said, “Hey, man, I want to thank you for taking the time out of your schedule to meet up with us and share your knowledge with us.” And he goes, “what schedule?” I didn’t get it at the time, but I got it later on.

Sandi Falin

And his whole thing was, “Don’t live with regrets. Don’t be on your deathbed. And go, Man, I wish I would have and have all these regrets.”

Jimi Falin

But the big takeaway for me was when I asked Patrick at the end, “what would you recommend?” And he goes, “Dude, you can always get your old life. Yeah, if you go out and you try it for a year, and it’s not for you don’t like it, you can always come home, and the same job will be there all life will be there waiting. House will be there. Everything will be there for you. But you at least got to go try.”

Sandi Falin

And that put it into perspective for me. I was like, “Oh, I don’t want this old life. I don’t like this life. So what the hell am I hesitating for? What am I fearful of?” And once I met him, it really changed everything for me because I was that person sitting there going, “Oh, I don’t know. That sounds great. But I don’t know, could I do that!” And then I realized that life is too short to have these hang-ups or these fears. If we never took the jump and never did this, never changed our lifestyle, we’d still be sitting in that same old house and that same old life. We’d still be miserable, probably more miserable now because it’s three years later. And now on the flip side, we did what we did… sold it all… we’ve had so many experiences around the world, met so many amazing people. That would never have happened if we didn’t take the chance.

How do your kids learn?

Sandi Falin

It’s a combination of things right now. We have a lot of online programs that we’re doing; Adventure Academy and Khan Academy are two. We were doing workbooks because I felt like it’s a good gauge to see where they’re at. But then I realized that if we’re going to embrace this whole lifestyle, we don’t need to do the workbooks, so we let them do whatever they’re interested in. Sky loves reading books and all of that kind of stuff. Ryder loves engineering. So we have them in engineering classes. And it’s just a lot of alternative learning styles for whatever they are interested in.

Jimi Falin

I’m a video editor. So I’m editing all day on the computer, and they see that. So they’re like, “what are you doing, Dad?” These kids in the past two weeks have sat down and figured out how to edit their own videos; they’re doing voiceovers, putting sound effects in there, downloading stuff from online. I’m like, that’s pretty good. I guide them, but I don’t tell them to do anything because I want to see what they come up with. And I’m very impressed with what they’ve done at 9 and 11 years old. It’s pretty crazy.

What is deschooling. What are the benefits?

Jimi Falin

Deschooling is something that we’re still working on. Like I said before, we’re just in this conditioned mindset that by a certain point, everybody should be at a certain point. Oh, man, we still struggle with it. We still struggle with it. But on the other side, I mean, you’re looking at what these kids experience and their lives and the beautiful stuff that they come up with and you’re like, wow,

Sandi Falin

We never do anything by the book, right, so there’s the whole unschooling, world schooling, and when you take them out of school, you should do a certain amount of time of deschooling, and just don’t do anything, just like enjoy each other… and we kind of do that every day. Our journey is a little different, because, as I said, we don’t follow the recommended way of doing things. Sometimes we should! We still battle that, honestly. We have to be honest; we still battle with “are the kid’s gonna be okay?”

Jimi Falin

But then on the flip side, every time we go to a conference, at the end they always have a team panel come up that have never been to school a day in their life. And they are the most beautiful, awesome, well rounded, intelligent, thoughtful, loving kids you have ever seen in your life and every parent is in the audience saying “OMG, it’s the greatest thing.” So that’s always our reinforcement that it’s all good?

Sandi Falin

Well, I think as parents we put a lot of pressure on ourselves, and that pressure gets very heavy at times, you know, and you just hope you’re doing the right thing. And ultimately, we know we are. This is, I think, this is the best path for our kids; however, it’s not the easiest path, and you still question yourself. I think we just had this conversation the other day, where we need to really just try and deschool and get this out of our head; that we have to do subjects, and we have to do this and keep track. It’s hard. It’s a challenge for us. It’s a challenge.

What are some of the other challenges you faced?

Sandi Falin

Coming back to Las Vegas for our business! So our film business is based out of Las Vegas, and so while we’re traveling, we can have people shooting for us while we’re gone. But ultimately, at some point, we need to come back. And when we come back, we’re sort of slapped in the face, with the reality of our country. There’s so much red tape here in the US. Everything feels like you’re doing something wrong. And when you’re overseas, it’s just so free and open. And so I think that’s our biggest challenge is coming back to the US.

Sandi Falin

Plus, we’re vegetarian, and so I think another big challenge is food, and the kids are very, very, very picky, well two of them are… So you get into foreign locations where everybody has everything… eventually, you can find pizza and french fries! You kind of have to adapt a little bit, and we tried to wait Ryder out, thinking eventually he’ll eat their food and about four days in after he hadn’t really eaten we had to find some french fries for him.

How do you create community?

Jimi Falin

We’ve spent 30 days with people, multiple families, and become lifelong friends with them, more so than a neighbor that I might have lived next to for ten years. Or we spent two weeks with you guys (the King Family) in Bali, and then we become lifelong friends. And we all resonate at the same energy field. And it’s just wonderful to have people like that in your life.

Sandi Falin

I think that’s something that happens when you travel, and you meet other families that are of that like-minded mindset, of which is what life is really about. You don’t find that everywhere. You can have people in your neighborhood, and they’re just doing their daily grind. But when you’re out in the world, and you’re connecting with other families, you have that same sort of outlook on life.

Jimi Falin

It’s almost like a tribe mentality. You have time to stop and talk to each other, and get to know each other and have a drink together, hang out together, watch each other’s kids together. You know, it’s amazing. It’s wonderful. I feel like it’s something that the world is missing nowadays. And that’s why there’s probably a lot of craziness going on.

How do you handle spending 24/7 together?

Sandi Falin

Some of the challenges with having your kids with you 24/7 is the balance of getting work done and paying attention to the kids and getting their learning going every day. So that balance we have not mastered by any means. If somebody has, please give us a clue!

Jimi Falin

Because we always think everybody else has it figured out. We’re like, they’ve got it figured out. And then you start talking to them, and they’re like we don’t have it figured out.

Sandi Falin

So alright, we’re good, we’re not unique, nobody’s got it figured out!

How has worldschooling changed your relationships with each other?

Sandi Falin

It’s almost funny. Our kids are so used to being with us that no matter where we go, we can go somewhere for the kids to play and do something, and they will play for a couple of minutes, and then they come right back to us. So it’s like they’ve gotten so connected to us that they don’t ever want to be away from us.

Jimi Falin

We’re like “go play! We came here for you guys,” and they’re like, “no, no, I just want to sit here with you.”

Sandi Falin

And they just really enjoy being with us. And I think that is super, super cool, you know. So I think traveling and doing all this and doing everything together all day long every day has really just made us so strong. And we didn’t even realize how much so. It was a side effect. So we go out and do things for them, take them somewhere that’s super fun for kids, and they just want to hang out with us and talk to us. And I’m going, “what are you doing? If I was a kid, I would be out there all day!” But no. So I think doing this whole world schooling lifestyle has just made them so much more connected to us…

Jimi Falin

…which is what you want, ultimately. I don’t want these kids to turn 18 and be like, “peace, don’t ever want to see again, Dad, thanks for the 18 years.” I want that connection with them. I want to be friends with them when they get older and be able to have more and more and more experiences with them. And it’s funny because when we were traveling SE Asia, we get 2-room suites, and everybody sleeps in one bed, and we’d sleep in another bed. And then we came back to the RV, and we only have one bed in the RV, so everyone is piled in there, and it was such a snuggly warm feeling. And then we decided to rent a house for a couple of months and move in here. It’s four bedrooms, and everybody’s got their own room. And every single night they’re coming back to our bed. At first, we said, “no, no, no go in your bed!” But now it’s just what they’ve been conditioned to for the past three or four years. So it’s just what they know; it’s comfortable for them. So now, I want to just move back into the RV and get our king bed back.

Sandi Falin

We thought it would be cool while we’re here for each of them to get their own room, they get to have their own space. And literally, nobody cares. And they want to be all in the same room. So I think one major thing that has happened is the connection with all of us has gotten so strong. If they were in school, it would not be like that at all because the amount of time you actually physically spend together is so small, maybe a few hours during the week, and then the weekends where you need to catch up on stuff. It’s quality time that we’re spending together every single day, and they love it.

What does a normal worldschooling day look like in your family?

Jimi Falin

It really depends where we are in the world! We get up; we find a local gym because we love to work out, and we go down and work out in the morning before the kids get up. And then we come back, and you know, just get breakfast ready, maybe head down to the market and get some food because there were just little markets and you have to go every single day, to stock up and get apples and pancake mix. Then we would find a bunch of local stuff, a bunch of local stuff with the kids. There are all kinds of little parks and meetups. And we would try and find community.

Sandi Falin

And depending on where we were, we would go to a temple and learn about the culture of whatever area we’re in. It kind of just change all the time, depending on where we are and what we’re doing.

Jimi Falin

We found that if we were in a place for a longer time, we actually did less because we’d put off visiting places, and then we’d be like “oh crap. We got to pack our bags. We’re leaving the next day. We never got to the temple.” But if we’re only there for four days, I guarantee you we would have gone around and seen everything that there was to see. So I don’t know. You’ve got to find the balance of fast travel and slow travel.

Jimi Falin

While we’re here in the States, it’s just grinding on work right now. We stay up late working, and we get up early working.

Sandi Falin

And the kids, whatever they’re into, they can start to do research online. Nixon was learning about Paris, so she chose to do a whole presentation on Paris.

Jimi Falin

Sky is teaching herself Spanish and Korean. They start editing on the computers… we’ll go to the park halfway through the day.

Sandi Falin

It’s really just self-directed right now. We encourage them to do whatever they’re interested in. So as of right now, that’s our game plan, which changes depending on where we are. We change direction every four days… so…

What are some of the benefits of worldschooling?

Sandi Falin

Our kids are navigating through the world at such a young age and able to communicate with all these people. They are starting to learn the languages and acting like little adults instead of children. We just came back from four months in Bali and our six-year-old…

Jimi Falin

…we call him the Mayor!

Sandi Falin

He was like a little King; he was making friends with everyone. A lot of them don’t even speak English, but there’s a connection there, and he’s able to just navigate his way through. The girls who are nine, and Nixon just turned 11; they’re learning the language, they’re doing things that they would never be able to do sitting in a classroom. You think you’re ingrained that this is the way to learn, but it blows it out of the water when you see them going through the world with such ease.

Jimi Falin

And here we are like “they’re not learning trigonometry,” but I’ve never used trigonometry in my life! I spent a whole semester in this crazy math class in college, where we just solved one problem. It was 14 pages of ones and zeros. I spent three months solving this problem and then I’ve never used it since. So what was the point of all this stuff? But then to see these kids get out there and navigate the world…

Sandi Falin

…and learning life skills, I think, is what’s the most important thing. And actually what’s most important to us is those kinds of things. Just having those life skills and confidence that they can enter in a situation and they’re not like shy and hiding behind our legs. Our middle daughter Skylar, she’s not a classroom kid. She had to repeat kindergarten because she wasn’t reading the little sight words in a timely manner and to their liking. But this kid absolutely loves marine life, anything weird, anything gross, like she knows everything about all animals. But that she would never explore that if she was sitting in the classroom, doing what the teacher had set forth for them

Jimi Falin

And she would have had a label on her that there was something wrong, that she had a learning disability because she didn’t fit into their box. She’s out in the stratosphere floating around with the stars, but they want to try to break that and put her in the box. And it’s beautiful that she gets to keep that, it’s not gonna be taken away from her. That’s what really hits us hard.

Sandi Falin

Another thing that I love about this whole lifestyle is the kids can be themselves. They don’t have to conform to the whole structure of the school system. And it’s not a fit for everyone’s learning style. And I was the same exact way as Skylar when I was a kid, and I was labeled as having a learning disability and getting all these tests done. And it messes with you when you grow up like that, and so I saw this with Skylar early on, and I thought, “oh, this is not gonna be fun.” So the one thing that is super important with this way of living like world schooling and all that is they get to explore who they are to the nth degree and whatever they’re interested in, they can go crazy with it and not have to be labeled and feel like, “ah, I’m not good enough. I’m not learning this the way I’m supposed to be learning it.” And that’s huge.

Jimi Falin

One of the things with the kids too; all the kids that we meet world schooling and traveling the world, they’re such beautiful, kind, loving soul. And then our kids come back to the states and interact with kids that are in school, and there’s a lot of stuff that they’re picking up that I don’t necessarily want them to be exposed to at such a young age. And I feel like there’s an innocence that gets to be preserved a little bit when you’re doing this kind of schooling and lifestyle with your kids.

What does it cost to worldschool?

Jimi Falin

It’s funny because everybody always says, “oh, isn’t it so expensive to travel?” Sandi is the king of finding $300 tickets anywhere in the world. And then once you get over there, it’s pretty much half price on what you would spend in the US. So if you’re spending $4,000 a month in the US, you could spend $2,000 a month over there and get by. So it’s actually cheaper to live in exotic, tropical locations than it is in your regular home town.

Sandi Falin

It’s like cheating life in a way. You feel like you’re cheating! It’s too good to be true! It’s more expensive to go to California for a week, probably going to live a month somewhere in Southeast Asia…

Jimi Falin

…if you go to Disneyland or Disney World, two days in Disneyland will cost you as much as two weeks in Bali, or more! So it’s crazy.

How do you guys fund your travels?

Jimi Falin

So we have a video production company based in Vegas. We get maybe 2, 3, 4 jobs a month.

Sandi Falin

The great thing about it, we don’t have to be in Las Vegas. We can have other people filming while we’re somewhere else and then they just shoot the footage over to Jimi and he can edit it wherever he is, as long as there’s a Wi-Fi connection, and we’re good,

Where can we find you online?

Sandi Falin

We started a YouTube channel about a year ago, documenting all of our travels. Film was our business, so it was just natural that we start filming the travel adventures. And what we’ve learned over the past year is how we have inspired people. And that’s really the passion now; showing other families that you can do this. Because a lot of people can’t believe we’re doing this with little kids.

Jimi Falin

Everybody asks us, “do you bring the kids with you?” I’m like, “do you think we leave them by themselves for four months at a time?” I don’t know. It’s kind of funny. So we have a YouTube channel called Try N Something New, and we have Instagram and Facebook. Right now, we’re grinding, we’re trying to get two videos up a week, but we get at least one video a week. I’ve got terabytes and terabytes and terabytes of adventures and footage and epic stuff that we’ve done that I just got to get to editing. And that’s the fun of doing video – each one takes about 10 hours, and it takes a minute to get it out.

Sandi Falin

So we try to show people the world through our travels, whether it be Southeast Asia, wherever we’ve been, and just inspire people to get out there and do the same.

Are you glad you started world schooling?

Sandi Falin

I love it. I love traveling. I love being out there. I love realizing we don’t need these possessions that we held on to for years. That when we sold it all it was freeing and so I love traveling with our suitcases and on to the next, and we start like there and then on to the next we start a life there. I never want to go back to that sedentary life in one place. Like you buy the house for 30 years, you’re in there, you get the roots. No! I think those experiences that you gain from traveling all over the world are way more valuable, way more important. The connections that you create from going through these experiences together with your family, I think they’re just priceless.

What would you say to someone who is considering world schooling?

Sandi Falin

If you’re sitting in your neighborhood and you’re realizing “God, this just sucks, this is not what I pictured,” you can try something new, and you can get out there and just do something different. There are different ways to live life and just take control of it. You don’t have to just do what everybody else is doing just because.

Jimi Falin

Trust your gut!

Sandi Falin

Whoever’s watching this, if you’re on the fence and you have fears, and you’re not sure what to do, just know that if you took the chance and did something different, your old life will be waiting for you. So if you find it’s not for you, you don’t like it you hate it, hey, your old life still there.

Jimi Falin

But you’ve got to try something new to find out!

Sandi Falin

You got to try something new… and you might love it!

Website Links

To find out more and connect with the Falin’s, check out the links to their social media below.

YouTube

Facebook

Instagram

Have Questions for Our Spotlight Family?

Ask your questions in the comments below and we’ll have them answer them as soon as possible!

Want to be featured on Worldschooling Spotlight?

For further details please click on the button below!

Get Featured!

Join our Worldschooling Community

Are you a Worldschooler or interested in Worldschooling?
Keep up to date with everything Worldschooling. Join Now!

We will never give away, trade or sell your email address. You can unsubscribe at any time.