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Week 0 - What Would You Do?

These questions are based on some of the things we had to figure out to plan for our trip.

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This category is specifically for educational use (students & teachers). Different groups may be using this, so our questions will not be targeted for specific ages or grades. Users are encouraged to customize this or use only portions that fit their needs. I will try to post 4 or 5 idea’s/thoughts about once a week based specifically on where we are or what we are doing during our trip.

PLEASE – do NOT post answers to math questions in a comment - this will make it harder for others to figure things out themselves. Comments on essay questions are fine though, it might be fun to compare your thoughts to what others have to say.

If you have any suggestions to improve this, please add a Comment!

1. Travel Planning:

Our RV is only 21’ long and there are two people going on the trip. Each person will have about as much space for cloths and personal items as would fit in a large suitcase. We plan to go grocery shopping and do laundry about once a week. If you were in this RV for this trip and could drive anywhere in America:

(a) Where would you go?

(b) What things or places would you want to visit and why?

(c) How long would you like your trip to last?

(d) What would you pack and why? (Remember, you are limited to one large suitcase to pack your things in.)

2. Navigation:

Lewis & Clark did not have any maps for their trip. They used Native American guides and a lot of trial and error. They created maps of their journey as they traveled and published them after they got back. Here is a really nice article about their trip that includes a picture of the famous map they created:

Wikipedia Article

Today there are a lot of maps available for a trip such as this. We have some maps that have the entire country on one map and some that are in books (Atlas), with separate pages for each state. To use different maps like this, you need to check the Scale (it’s usually a bar that shows how many miles or km are in a given distance printed on the map).

My grandmother walked & road across the United States with her two sisters during the 1920’s. They didn’t know about map scales, so looked at a map of the USA and a map of Massachusetts. Both were printed on about the same size paper. They knew it took about a week to walk across Massachussetts – so they thought it would only take a week to walk across the whole country! They were not prepared for how long the trip really took, which caused them a lot of problems, such as running out of food and money. (Better that you learn about map scales now before you make such a big mistake.)

We will also be using mapping software on my laptop computer that is connected to a GPS receiver (Global Positioning System). This automatically connects the map on the computer to a signal from a satellite to tell us where we are and give us directions to where we are going. Online mapping and GPS are new technologies.

(a) Do you think they will replace paper maps completely? Why or why not?

On a computer map, you can easily zoom in or out

(b) Do you still need to understand map scale’s to use an online map? Why or why not?

3. Journal:

Lewis & Clark kept very detailed notes during their expedition. They wrote about how far they went, where they went and they described people they met. They also drew pictures of plants, tree’s, birds and landscape they saw.

We are keeping our ‘journal’ online as a ‘blog’. While the land features today are already well known, we have forgotten about how lovely and rural most of this Country still is. During our trip we hope to ‘rediscover’ some of the beauty and history of the places we visit and will write about them here. Using Lewis & Clark as an inspiration, we are also going to attempt to draw or paint some of what we see (please be kind, I didn’t do very well in Art in school!)

Why don’t you also keep a Journal as you ‘travel’ about your daily business? What kinds of things will you write about? (Hint: if you’re not sure what to write about, just start writing. With some practice, you will get an idea of what you enjoy writing about.)

Here is a web site for some inspiration:

About Travel Journals

4. Scheduling the Trip:

We plan to drive only about 4 hours per day (on average, some will be more, some less). On long trips, I average about 50 miles per hour driven (I drive faster then this of course, but also stop for gas, rest stops, meals, etc., so the net seems to always work out to about 50 mph – especially in an RV like mine, which will be a little slower than a car).

(a) The travel books say the best time to see the fall colors in New England is between October 1st and 31st. If we leave home in Shelton (near Seattle) on September 1st, will we be able to get to New England by October 1st? (Hint: Use the 3,000 mile estimated distance from item 5 below).

(b) If it takes us less than 30 days to get to New England, and if we also plan to stop and visit relatives for 6 days along the way, how many 'free' days will we have for sightseeing (for example, to spend extra time at Mt. Rushmore, Niagara Falls, etc.)?

(c) There are several web sites that can help you calculate your own distances between places. Use this site and check if my estimates are reasonable or not:

Distance Calculator

(Hint: if the place you want to visit isn’t listed, choose the closest big city. For example, Key West isn’t on their list, but Miami is.)

5. Budgeting for Gas:

We are estimating the country is about 3,000 miles across from east to west, and about 1700 miles from north to south. If we make one complete trip around the country, approximately how many total miles will that be?
(a) My RV gets about 15 miles per gallon (mpg). How many gallons of gas will I need to buy for this trip?

(b) If gas costs $3.00 per gallon, how much should I budget for gas for the entire trip? Assuming we drive at about the same rate for the 8 months we’ll be on the trip, how much should we expect to spend on gas per month? If the price of gas drops to $2.50 per gallon, how much money will that save us per month?

(c) My RV’s gets pretty good mileage for an RV because it’s so small. Bigger RV’s have a lot more living space inside, but some get only 4 mpg. If we took a more comfortable RV with lots of space, but got 4 mpg instead of 15 mpg, how much more should I budget for gas for this trip (assume $3.00 per gallon)?

Posted by jl98584 22:21 Tagged educational

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