Minimizing the Homeschool Expenses–A few of our favorite ways to keep the costs down or to be more sustainable in our homeschooling.
•Use copy paper twice: paper airplanes, scratch paper, practice paper, copy on second side.
•Buy quality first time, make it last through all the kids.
•Hit the library bookstore and create your own simple resource library. Saves time driving to the library and not everything looks the same on a computer screen as it does on the printed page.
•Stock up on “new” books from the used bookstore for special reading units or gifts.
•Swap services for lessons. Swap skills for apprenticeship. Pay for lessons in areas that need the expertise.
•Request daytime admission or group price, often businesses or teachers are stuck with empty studio or museums because public school kids are in school. We have had really inexpensive art lessons, field trips, orchestra instruction, science labs, and dance classes for homeschoolers, because we were willing to meet when the instructors needed business.
•Swap outgrown sports gear and instruments with other homeschoolers.
•Swap outgrown music or create a loaner program for sight reading music.
•Stick with fewer quality experiences than quantity of trivial activities (less driving, less planning, less hauling around, less chaos).
•Create smaller group activities. Less planning and clean up. More quality friendship time. Less cost on hosting and supplies.
•Choose fewer workbooks (expense), spend more time reading classic or quality books. Spend more time using the “3 R’s” in real life. Read, write, and calculate. Set a solid foundation to build from.
•Create a side business that incorporates homeschooling and the business. Bring in income doing what you love–being with your kids and staying at home, while itemizing deductions for materials used by your family business or a home office.
•Offer to school another child with your own. The other family might need to work or care for family. You swap teaching, they buy the materials.
Homeschooling can be budgeted. It can also bust the budget with all the wonderful classes and curriculum that is now available. There can be too much of a good thing.