Following the Vendée Globe with the kids

Learning is fun! We’re learning new things by following the Vendee Globe Race at home with the kids.

I don’t really follow sports, with the exception of the Vendée Globe. Every four years, a bunch of crazy sailors take part in a solo, non-stop, without assistance, round the world sailing race.

I usually follow the event on my own, but this time around the kids will follow the race with me, learning a thing or two along the way!

I’ve always admired the guts it takes to even attempt something like this. For some, it’s a life’s achievement to attempt and finish. For others, winning that race is the objective.

Quick overview of the route around the globe

With every new edition, we get a better look into what each one of the sailors go through, at their best and at their lowest points.

We can learn with them, too. With Internet, the skippers have had to turn into vloggers and share little bits of their day every day.

It’s really interesting for the kids. It gives us opportunities to discover new things and touch on different topics every week. We can obviously talk about geography; we’ll go through each ocean and each continent. We can talk biology as the sailors meet with animals. We can talk about climate change and its effects on our environment, even in the most remote places on earth. We’ll talk about pollution, too. We can talk science; the different states of water can be a good example as the sailors show us their freeze-dried food. :)

There are tons of other things we can talk about. Race organizers and teachers also share resources we can use, so I’m sure we’ll find a lot of fun things to learn! :)

For now, we’ve each picked our favorite skipper. We follow their daily updates on YouTube, and we note their progress on a large map that I printed.

Yes I know, my desk is a mess!

The kids follow Clarisse Crémer (she’s been answering questions from kids in her videos) and Maxime Sorel (he has a dragon on his sails!). I follow Alex Thomson. In 8 editions of the race, only Frenchmen have won so far. I think it’d be nice if an outsider won this time around, to open things up a bit. Alex is on his fifth edition, is experienced at this, and seems like an all-around nice guy. :)

We even joined the race ourselves, thanks to the Virtual Regatta game. We’re jeherve there, if you’re also racing and want to add us as friends in-game. :) We had a bit of a bad start (I couldn’t log in to the game for a couple of days to change course), but we’re doing better now!

As a conclusion, here is a little series that serves that a great introduction to the race, its ethos, and its challenges. Check it out, and maybe you’ll end up subscribing to the Vendée Globe YouTube channel to follow the race with us! :)