Who loves homeschool curriculum? I do, I do!
With the “school year” coming to a close for many, it’s that time of year again for us homeschool moms to start making plans for September. When planning for the next year, the top thing on most homeschoolers minds is curriculum. What curriculum should you choose? What subjects should you teach? How are you ever going to afford it all?
Homeschooling can be so expensive! There’s always going to be some interesting new curriculums that you just “need to have” and there’s almost too much to choose from. Believe me, I’m always on the lookout for the latest and greatest and it can sure add up. But it doesn’t always have to. The amazing thing about homeschooling is that you’re not limited to any certain curriculum. You can pick and choose to your liking and your price point. Here are a few simple ways to help you afford homeschool curriculum and supplies on a limited budget.
Make A Budget And Stick To It
When I start planning for the new school year, my husband and I come up with a budget for curriculum and supplies that fits for our family. I always plan according to that budget and I never stray from it. I usually keep a small portion of that money that I set aside for supplies that we may need throughout the year such as ink, printer paper, glue, etc.
Buy Used Curriculum
This is a great way to save money but you have to be willing to put in some time. Searching for used curriculum can definitely take awhile to find exactly what you’re looking for. There are so many great resources out there to help you online. If you type in ‘Used ____ Curriculum’ lots of options usually come up. Facebook is another great resource. There are many buy and sell groups for curriculum, many of which are brand specific (Math-U-See, Timberdoodle, Bookshark, etc..)
Sell Your Old Stuff
Whether it be old curriculum that you’re not using anymore, those baby clothes that you’ve been planning to get rid of or furniture that you just don’t want anymore, someone is always willing to buy it.
About a month ago, we moved into our new house. Before we moved, we really wanted to declutter our old house. We didn’t want to waste our very limited time packing all of this junk that we didn’t even want anymore. I decided to sell some old toys the kids didn’t play with anymore, baby clothes, some books/text books, a few small pieces of furniture that was just collecting dust in our basement and even a pair of shoes that I’d never gotten around to wearing (the tags were still on them after a year!). I posted all of the items on some local buy and sell groups on Facebook and within a few days, everything was sold. It was so easy! It didn’t really take much time or effort and I made over $700! All that from stuff I was willing to throw out.
Utilize Your Local Library For Homeschool Curriculum
Hello! It’s a building full of books! As a homeschooler, what more could you want? While you may not be able to find everything that you’re looking for, such as text books or teaching guides, the library is a great way to supplement your curriculum. Many full and boxed curriculums will have a list of books that you’ll need in order to successfully complete the assignments. Instead of purchasing ever single title, check to see if you’re local library carries it. This can save you so much money. Many libraries will also do inter-library exchanges if they don’t carry that title for a small fee. The library is also a great resource for those who take more of an eclectic approach to homeschooling and create there own curriculum.
Consider Getting A Work From Home Job
I know, I know! Who has time for that? With homeschooling and keeping up with the house hold, time can be very limited but there are some great options out there to help you make a few extra bucks and that don’t take up a ton of your time. Are you a good listener? Maybe try being a transcriptionist. Do you love to write? Why don’t you try your hand in blogging or even freelance writing. Are you super organized? Maybe you’ll enjoy being a Virtual Assistant. There are tons of websites out there that post freelance and Virtual Assistant jobs such as Upwork or Freelancer. Most of these jobs can be done on your schedule and for as much or little time as you want.
Ask Family To Pitch In
Okay, so obviously you’re not going to just ask them to give you money. That would be crazy! In our family, we found that for Birthdays and Christmas’s, our family and friends were giving our kids way too many presents. Our kids would open them, play with them for a few days and then toss them aside like every other toy they get. So, we decided to put a limit on gifts. One gift each and that’s it! If anyone wants to give more, no problem. They can put money into their school fund. The school fund is used for homeschool curriculum, supplies, field trips and extra-curricular activities. Our family seems to like the idea and so do we. It works great for all of us.
Use Curriculum For Multiple Children
Combining subjects is a great way to save money on homeschool curriculum. Many subjects such as literature, history, geography, science and art can be taught to a variety of ages. Books can be read aloud and then each child can be given age specific worksheets and activities to complete. If this doesn’t work for you or your family, homeschool curriculum can be kept for over time for additional students. You may just need purchase any workbooks that go with them.
So, hopefully I’ve given you a few ideas on how to afford homeschool curriculum on a limited budget. Let me know if you have any additional ideas.