Most homeschool families keep an eye on their homeschool budget. Homeschooling can be expensive but it does not have to be. But a bloated budget is especially dangerous for large families and the expense are multiplied through many children and small changes can become budget buster.
How to Homeschool a Family Well on a Budget
- Have a Plan – We should know what subjects each child we will cover and what books they will use. Then we can determine what we have and what we need to purchase and create a curriculum spread sheet. Additionally, we can make sure we are getting the price for those books. My ebook “Planning Your Best Homeschool Year” (free this month) discusses in detail how to get the best price on new and used homeschool books and shows you how to plan your homeschool year.
- Reusable Curriculum– Give priority to books and curriculum that you can easily reuse. For instance Saxon math has hard cover books that each child could use. Or perhaps like us you can use a multilevel curriculum like Mystery of History or Answers in Genesis Science . Once you have purchased these books you will never need to spend money on a history or science spine again.
- Buy used, Save the Difference- Try to buy as much of your curriculum as possible used. I will start looking for curriculum next month and begin to purchase it through used curriculum sites between now and August. In August, I will finally break down and order whatever I couldn’t find used new.
- Cheapest Isn’t Always Best – I have found that the cheapest way to homeschool isn’t always the best thing for our homeschool. For instance with some of the free curriculum I’ve found that although there is zero monetary cost, it involves a lot of teacher preparation. So although it saves me money, it but costs me a lot of time. So just be thoughtful as you consider curriculum and consider both the impact on your wallet and your time!
- Once you have chosen a curriculum try to Stick with the Curriculum and avoid the curriculum carousel. Remember curriculum is a tool not a master! So before you quit a curriculum be sure you’ve tried to use it in every way imaginable. I think sometimes we are a little to eager to try the ‘latest & greatest’ curriculum instead of sticking with the tried and true curriculum we’ve been using. That said there are times to thoughtfully jump ship and move onto to another curriculum or return to an old curriculum we were using.