Tag Archives: inexpensive

How to Homeschool … for Cheap

 

Homeschool #2

As I prepare for another challenging and exciting homeschool year, I am seeing facebook group pages fill up with people who are unsure, tentative and a bit overwhelmed by starting homeschool.  They don’t know where to start.  Or some have done enough research to pave a small path, but the amount of curriculum possibilities, and associated dollar signs, makes their heads spin.

I’m all about making sure my children have the best education I can give them.  But best doesn’t always have to mean most expensive.  Here are a few tips:

1) Take advantage of curriculum or curriculum aids in your public library.  That’s right, I’ve found excellent supplemental items in the library.  Granted, you can’t hang on to it for the entire school year, but depending on the item you may be able to structure your studies to get full use out of it during your time.  And you can always continue to renew!  You can also pick up books that give you great homeschool info, like 102 Top Picks For Homeschool Curriculum.

2) Attend used curriculum sales.  Co-ops, conferences and now many Facebook pages offer used curriculum at great discounts.  So what a few pages are marked up or have highlighting?  You can get the meat of what you need from it, and avoid new book costs and shipping fees.

3) Go on virtual field trips.  All sorts of trips are available for art, history and science.  It’s a great way to learn and can ease the cost of attending so many events.  However, you’ve got to get out of the house once in a while! :)  In which case, you want to ….

4) Research Homeschool Days.  From the aquariums to museums, ballparks to theme parks, it seems like everyone is offering days specifically geared to homeschoolers.  The rates tend to be a little lower, and you meet other like-minded people.  It can be a nice bonding experience.

5) Pool resources.  If you have more than one child who is homeschooling, consider allowing them to share a textbook.  Just buy separate workbooks.

6) Lastly, check out online curriculum.  There are tons!  And it’s not just having the child sit in front of the computer all day.  Some curriculum give you work to print, or activities to do.

Homeschooling doesn’t have to be expensive.  Be open, be creative and enjoy the possibilities!

Summer Camp Time Already?

Yup. Sure is. And for me, as with everything else, it becomes a part time job and a full time adventure. I am the type that thoroughly – and I mean thoroughly, researches every endeavor for my kids. From ratio of camp counselors, to time for breaks and lunches, to exact camp agendas, and of course are scholarships available – I check out everything. I’ve had many parents ask me how I begin research to find the best places for my child to spend their time during the summer.

1) I check out places I like to visit with the kids. I find out if there is a summer camp available. Then I look into whether they offer a scholarship/financial help. After all, camps typically run $200 or more per week, and that ain’t cheap.
2) I google areas of my boys’ interests. My oldest is into science (especially Magic School Bus). My little guy loves art and soccer. So I see what camps focus on those areas.
3) My local rec centers are places to look. They could offer great activities for the boys – and a reprieve for me – for about half of the price of ritzier locales. And they still have fun.
4) Vacation Bible School, anyone? VBS is one of the best ways for the boys to get a great learning week of fun! We are blessed to have a number of great churches holding VBS sessions in our area. And the cost is minimal – if any! A win-win for all of us.

I then reference, cross-reference and triple check dates. Parents, start your engines. Let the sign ups begin!