A look behind the scenes of our Abeka marketing shoot…
Several months ago, a marketing firm reached out to our family. A popular homeschool
curriculum, Abeka, wanted to feature us in their upcoming brand campaign. I felt the need to
clarify that they reached out to the right person. It was hard to believe that the same girl who
wouldn’t even consider homeschooling, could now provide a personal testimony for it. Life is
But truthfully, I couldn’t be more honored. Abeka has been my go-to math curriculum for 6 years
now. Being such a huge fan, it took no convincing for us to say ‘yes’ to their proposal for the
campaign. Beyond getting the chance to champion for something I strongly believe in, I assumed
it would be a cool experience for our family. Oh, was I right!
Behind The Scenes
After many Zoom meetings, calls, and texts, the production team finally arrived in Fort Myers.
Earlier in the month they’d met our family and scoped out the location, so we really hit the
ground running the minute they landed.
I’ve never been so impressed by what can only be described as organized chaos. There were
backup plans for the backup plans. No detail went unnoticed. Even with the things no one could
control, like the weather!
The week of production called for a 60% chance of rain at all times in Fort Myers.
Unfortunately, a large majority of our campaign needed to be filmed outside. Somehow for 48
hours we managed to spontaneously shoot when the weather cooperated. And we used the
cloudy, windy, rainy moments to film inside.
Production On a Boat
One of my first concerns when Abeka’s marketing team mentioned the size of the production
team coming to Fort Myers was how we could make that work on our boat. They assured me, we
would. And somehow, we did.
Naturally, ahead of filming I decluttered like crazy hoping to create the illusion of space. I’m sure
I wasn’t fooling anyone, but at least I felt good. There were cameras, equipment, and people
everywhere! The kids (and pets) loved it.
One night, between storms, we took our boat out of the marina to capture some shots of our
home on the water. There’s no doubt, everyone in Fort Myers wondered what we were doing. A
3-person camera crew stood on the docks with huge equipment and drones in the air. Meanwhile
we drove our boat back and forth in the sunset for an hour.
No one loved it more than Captain (our dog.) I’m pretty sure he thinks he missed his calling as a
Hollywood dog. Every time we turned our boat, Captain moved to be in the most optimal filming
position and then he posed for the cameras.
Fun, Behind The Scenes Facts From Filming
• The ice cream scene was filmed in the morning. We needed an empty location and it
worked best with the schedule. Of course, both kids were thrilled to eat ice cream shortly
• Miller’s bike tire was completely flat. Since we were fighting the forecast, we didn’t want
to waste any time finding a pump. The kids rode bikes for over an hour while filming
different shots. We were all holding our breath that his tire wouldn’t completely give out.
• The shots of Miller standing on a desk at the end of the dock were taken during 25 mph
winds. It was not dangerous, but certainly quite an adventure for him. We’re on floating
docks so they were moving a ton. I was impressed that Miller handled it as well as he
• Speaking of the desk, Miller spent a lot of time standing on it. We were allowed to keep
it. I put it in storage, and I plan to put it in his room one day. He said he loves that he’ll
have a souvenir that will always remind him of the experience.
• Some of the audio and interview shots were filmed on a set the production crew built at
the marina. They assembled a desk, hung pictures, disassembled screen doors, and even
added decorative plants and lighting.
• Mary Grace was actually doing schoolwork the entire time they filmed her “studying.” I
don’t think there’s another child on the planet who could multitask like that with all of the
cameras and crew moving around.
The Abeka Influence
One of the most interesting parts of this whole experience is that it forced me to reflect on our
homeschooling journey. If you aren’t familiar with our story, I need to emphasize that we didn’t
plan to homeschool. In fact, I was pretty against it. However, we’ve always had the desire to
travel with our kids. And unfortunately, travel and traditional schooling don’t always play nicely.
Something needed to change. And I had no plans of giving up travel.
After a lot of prayer, we resorted to homeschooling when Mary Grace started 3rd grade. Yes, resorted to it. Almost immediately our mentality shifted. We went from surviving to thriving. We fell in love
with the convenience and flexibility of homeschooling.
In reflection, my change of heart had everything to do with the curriculum. Abeka makes me look like a rockstar teacher. It’s easy for me and enjoyable for the kids. Best of all, our school travels with us!
That’s a Wrap
After 2 long days, the filming in Fort Myers came to an end. We were all exhausted, but also sad
to see the production team go. It was truly a fun experience and we’d quickly become friends with everyone. The kids enjoyed the extra attention and having cameras follow them around
while they did some very routine things.
Over the next few months, the campaign will roll out with our narrative and footage from
filming. You’ll be able to see it by following @momwithamp on both Instagram and Facebook.
And you can also visit wherelearninglives.com to see some cool videos and blog posts.
This is just a fun little behind the scenes look, but I’m happy to answer any specific questions
about Abeka. Or even just homeschooling in general. Leave a comment or reach out on social
media- I’d love to connect.
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