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#1 lolo

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 10:39 AM

If you have no English library around you how much do you spend a year on curriculum?

I see all the time people say they spend $100 or so for early elementary. As I am planning for 1st there is no way it can be that cheap!

So I am just wondering if I am spending too much, or if others without libraries spend a lot on books. Maybe I need to change my curriculum choices from those with lots of read alouds. But then we wouldn't have books to read.......

#2 texasmom33

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 10:45 AM

I spent a lot. It trickes in because now I rarely buy everything at once, but I’d estimate our family book budget is as least $200 a month on average. That doesn’t count the high school kid whose online classes quickly run into the thousands.

I know it can be done cheaply. But I don’t chose to do it that way. I love books and I think of all the things we could spend extra money on books aren’t a bad investment. :)
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#3 HomeAgain

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 10:52 AM

A library makes things cheaper.  So do good friends. :)

 

We tend to purchase most of our read alouds just because we're slower than library due dates.  My list for 3rd grade language arts is at $165 this year:

 

ELTL main book ($45)

$10-20 per hardback read aloud (6 of them)

notebooks for copywork and dictation (I want them separate this year)

Elson reader 3 - $13

 

That will be our core.  I am hoping to find nice copies of some of the read alouds either used or on sale and I think ones we won't use more than this year will be paperbacks.  That'll shave about half the cost off the books, bringing us to right about $100 for language arts.


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#4 SilverMoon

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 11:06 AM

When I say, "I spent X on 1st grade," I very likely didn't include the cost of extra reading books. I probably only counted actual curricula. Books are like socks around here; we're going to buy them anyway. #raisingbibliophiles

 

Since we're talking about your oldest, you should pay close attention to which child in the family is this $100 first grader people are posting about. My current first grader is "the baby" of a bustling homeschool. I only bought the consumable workbooks for his math and writing. And spelling (but we shelved it because he wasn't ready). Oh! And one part of a science curriculum (already had the rest). First Language Lessons, loads of good books, math extras, all the phonics the boy could ever need, the teacher manuals, and so on were already in my school closet.

If I didn't live near an English library or used book store, I'd be looking at large book lots on Ebay and hitting the seasonal sales on used book sites (hpb, etc) for reading books. Consider anthologies as well; more bang for your buck.


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#5 desertstrawberry5

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 11:13 AM

I buy used books from library sales, flea markets, used book stores, and thrift stores and we use a LOT of digital material. I pretty much never buy new books. If I didn't have access to any of those sources, I think I would explore my online options for used books. 

Edit: We spend very little. On the early grades, nothing approaching $100 a year. The library is a good resource, but certainly not a necessity. Digital materials save us way more money than the lending library. 

Edit 2: The best source by far is other homeschoolers. I was given 6 large boxes of school books by someone who was moving when we first arrived here. I have a huge box of books I selected for a friend who is getting started with her 4 yr old. Groups we have been a part of have done book exchanges. That is my favorite. 


Edited by desertstrawberry5, 11 February 2018 - 11:18 AM.

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#6 plagefille

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 11:20 AM

I spent very little in early elementary. We used mostly free curriculum and things we did buy I bought used. Digital books are a good option too. Many are free.
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#7 nixpix5

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 01:49 PM

We have a ton of homeschoolers in my area and we are all competing for the same books each year from the curriculum book lists. I reserve books early but you never know when they will roll in. Case in point, I reserved Cathy Duffy ' s book over a year ago and forgot since I no longer really need it. I got the email that it was in on the hold shelf yesterday. So that is sometimes what I am up against. Therefore we tend to buy alot of books.

I would say, on average, I spend roughly $100 per month on books. This would be a combination of Amazon, Better World Books, and my weekly stop in at the Goodwill or Value Village. I am usually hunting for not only the current books we need but the following years as well. For example, we will be doing Middle Ages starting in August. I have been searching used books for a year or more and collecting them as I see them. So my budget doesn't necessarily reflect current year if that makes sense.
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#8 happypamama

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 01:56 PM

We do have a good library, but my parents enjoy poking around thrift stores, so I give them a list of books I'd like, and they very often find them for a dollar or less.

 

I'm going to spend almost nothing on my rising Ker and 2nd grader for next year, but that's because they're the fourth and fifth children.  We are swimming in early elementary stuff.  I'm not opposed to buying something specifically for the younger ones (that's why I bought a bunch of Draw Write Now books, for my fourth child), and it's nice if they have things that aren't hand me downs from the older kids, because I don't want them to think they're afterthoughts, but at the same time, reusing is so nice!  I generally assume that if I buy something for one of the oldest three, that someone else down the line will use it at some point, even if they all don't.  


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#9 texasmom33

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 05:41 PM

Btw- keep an eye on the classifieds here and you can get great deals on used books (not just curriculum) and I’ve yet to be burned on condition unlike Half Price Books or Amazon. I actually just bought a box last week. :) My dh says it must be nice to me since everyday is like Christmas with a box arriving. He exaggerates, but not a ton. :D

#10 goldenecho

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 08:52 PM

So thankful for our library, but if I wasn't near one I would be doing a lot of buying on Thriftbooks.com and other used resources, and since I imagine you are buying from abroad, making single purchases from used stores with larger selections to cut down on cost.  I'd also be printing a lot more, or maybe reading some off of an Ipad. 



#11 MerryAtHope

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 10:07 PM

I think read-aloud are worth having! We used Sonlight, so definitely expensive at times. But we have a great used sale in our group and that helped. Enjoy reading with your kids. It’s worth it.
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#12 shawthorne44

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 10:20 PM

Also, Project Gutenberg has kids books too.   I'm gathering the books mentioned in WWE1, and the library didn't have the "Blue Fairy Book" by Andrew Lang.   But Gutenburg not only had it, but they 12 other colors of Fairy books.  Who knew there were thank many?   

 

But, when I read a thread title, a response usually pops into my head, which usually has nothing to do with my real response when I read the first post.  In this case it didn't change, it was "Cry.  Then adjust my budget."  Because the fact that you don't have an English library around probably also means that you don't have the easy access to free/super-cheap books that I do.  


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#13 sea_mommy

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Posted 11 February 2018 - 11:47 PM

If you have no English library around you how much do you spend a year on curriculum?

I see all the time people say they spend $100 or so for early elementary. As I am planning for 1st there is no way it can be that cheap!

So I am just wondering if I am spending too much, or if others without libraries spend a lot on books. Maybe I need to change my curriculum choices from those with lots of read alouds. But then we wouldn't have books to read.......

 

We live overseas and have no English library around.  I must bring everything with us in suitcases or have visitors bring books with them. 

 

I spend pretty minimally on actual curriculum (though more than $100), but I spend a lot on just reading books--pictures books, beginning readers, read alouds, science, history.  That is where the bulk of our budget goes.  I had a hard time at first (I miss libraries!), but now that my oldest is in the 5th grade, I have no regrets that I bought so many books.  

 

Edit to add: I am very sensitive to mold and must, so I now only buy books new.  


Edited by sea_mommy, 11 February 2018 - 11:50 PM.

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#14 okbud

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 08:10 AM

We didn't have a usable library when my oldest was in first grade and I bought books in earnest. There was no such thing as "too much" cost-wise because I either had the scratch for the books I wanted or I didn't. 

 

No regrets at all even though I have since given most of those books away.

 

If it needs to be done on a shoestring, it can be. But if it does NOT need to be done as cheaply as possible, that's one way to go, too. 

 


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#15 lolo

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 08:44 AM

When I say, "I spent X on 1st grade," I very likely didn't include the cost of extra reading books. I probably only counted actual curricula. Books are like socks around here; we're going to buy them anyway. #raisingbibliophiles

Since we're talking about your oldest, you should pay close attention to which child in the family is this $100 first grader people are posting about. My current first grader is "the baby" of a bustling homeschool.


That did not cross my mind to look at first kid in a family.
It makes sense the first/only would cost more.
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#16 lolo

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 08:45 AM

Ok I am feeling not so crazy for spending money on books for school. 😁

We will be stateside soon and will be buying all our curriculum for a few years so it really adds up!
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#17 lolo

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 08:48 AM

I think read-aloud are worth having! We used Sonlight, so definitely expensive at times. But we have a great used sale in our group and that helped. Enjoy reading with your kids. It’s worth it.


Yes I love reading to ds. It just figuring out if I am crazy for wanting more books or just need to read the same things over and over and over.....
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#18 sea_mommy

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 09:10 AM

Ok I am feeling not so crazy for spending money on books for school. 😁

We will be stateside soon and will be buying all our curriculum for a few years so it really adds up!

 

We are only in the States once every few years, so I also spend a lot of money all at one time.  The first time I came back with books, I thought that I had overdone it a bit.  NOPE!  We read all of those books!  


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#19 Woodland Mist Academy

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 10:13 AM

In order for there to be used books to be given away freely or sold for super cheap prices, someone has to buy them new in the beginning. It takes people on both ends for the cycle to work. If you have the resources to spend on books, I wouldn't worry too much about what others spend. I consider money spent on books not only an investment in my family's future, but an investment in the future of the families who will be given the books some day down the road. Often books we've passed on to others have then been passed on again and again.


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#20 ondreeuh

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 11:01 AM

I would just get Kindle books. They only care about the billing address, so if you can use someone's card (with permission, LOL!) you can buy your digital books that way. You could even have someone order the books for you as a "gift" and just repay them with Paypal or whatever. It will at least save on shipping, and so many old books are so cheap as kindle books. Or go through Project Gutenberg for the public domain books.

 

I will say that if you don't have a library, purchasing curricula will be more important - you can't just wing it and investigate different things as they come up.

 

For curricula, there are a lot of companies that offer digital downloads. For first grade, you could use:

Mr. Q life science (free, digital)

Math Mammoth ($37.50, digital)

Reading Lessons through Literature ($25, digital)

RLTL workbook ($20, digital)

Evan-Moor workbooks for spelling, writing, geography, etc. (cheap, digital)

Story of the World ($50 for a bundle)

 

You could do quite well for $150. 


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#21 Meriwether

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 04:18 AM

I spend an insane amount of money on books. I am not good about using a library and prefer to own a book rather than check it out for multiple kids over the years. Trying to manage a borrowing list for four kids so they have the books checked out at the right time would be a nightmare for me. But, my kids do a lot of reading. I'm working on plans for next year. For my oldest,  I've scheduled 4 full books for week one and parts of 4 others, plus reading from a history spine.* That would be 2 and 1/3 biographies, one lit book for fun, and one lit book for discussion and analysis plus parts of others for various other subjects. For my second, there will be 4 full books plus parts of three others but two of his books are considerably shorter/easier. Ds11 will have 2 and 1/3 books all of which will be easier and shorter than the older two's. Dd8 will have three books at her level. I will also be reading from at least three read-alouds. So, that will be 21 books for our first week of school (but 9 of them will be used multiple weeks). I'm not trying to find those on the right week from the library.

 

*I know this many books will seem crazy to some people. My kids like to read and have requested a long book list. The older three will average 1-3 books/week in addition to scheduled reading.

 


Edited by Meriwether, 13 February 2018 - 07:53 AM.

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#22 macmacmoo

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 11:13 PM

We don't use the library. Eldest is nine. I've been gathering books since he was little using the lists from memoria press, tanglewood and the mensa book list as guides. A few years ago we tried kindle free time to supplement, but it didn't work out for us. Last fall we tried using Epic as a supplement. I think its a better fit for our family.

 

 

Side note: take a look at Barefoot Meanderings Pathways.The core of the list are public domain books which means you can find them free digitally.



#23 Tsuga

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Posted 13 February 2018 - 11:30 PM

Side note: many US library systems also loan online, making it possible to use a library card virtually using any online reader. You don't need a Kindle. KCLS and Seattle Public libraries both offer this. You have to get a bona fide card in person but then you can use it overseas.

#24 boscopup

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Posted 14 February 2018 - 08:22 AM

I spend very little on first grade now, but like others, my first graders have older siblings ahead of them. :) My first first grader, I definitely spent more than $100! Let's see. with him I used SOTW (bought that new, then got the AG set for all 4 years used for $30 and bought the PDF of the student pages for year 1), Math Mammoth entire set (HSBC 50% off sale), a few different spelling programs (I think I had R&S Spelling 2, AAS 1, and maybe Sequential Spelling 1?), FLL, WWE... I can't remember what I did for science that year. I bought everything new except those AGs.

 

My next first grader did Singapore 1 instead of MM, so I had to buy that (and I think the whole kit and caboodle there is $100 easy). He was still learning to read, so I used various phonics programs with him. I can't remember what else we did.

 

My third first grader I don't think I had to buy much except new Singapore 1 workbooks. He also had different needs... He was reading independently at that point, so he didn't need the phonics program. He could spell naturally, so he didn't need the spelling program.

 

Put it this way... I was going to have all my kids do virtual school at the beginning of this school year. Things changed, and I decided one day to homeschool the younger two (oldest is still doing virtual school this year, but he'll homeschool next year for high school, where I'll spend WELL over $100 :lol:). That night, I looked through my curriculum closet and at my files on my computer, and I found everything I needed for all subjects for a 3rd grader and a 5th grader without buying anything. We started the next day. Now I later decided to change some things, so I still ended up spending money on them. :p

 

For literature, I like to order from Better World Books. You might see if they or a similar company ship to where you are for free. I know some of  my BWB orders actually come from the UK. I bought all the books I needed for my younger two's literature based US history for $100, buying everything used. That's history spines, read alouds, and readers. I didn't want to have to use the library. I'm bad about forgetting to check a book out or forgetting to turn them in before racking up fines (I was a heavy contributor to the building of my local library's new building). So I find it much easier to own the books. Obviously, not everyone can afford that. You do what you can.

 

My oldest was in private school prior to homeschooling, so my husband has budgeted the amount of private school tuition for our homeschooling each year. Whatever doesn't get used goes in a college fund. I don't spend NEARLY the amount of private school tuition (and it was a cheap private school - less than $5k), but I do usually spend several hundred on 3 kids and plenty of books. If you have the money and it won't cause you to skip meals or miss a housing payment, don't feel guilty about spending money on your children's education. Just spend within your means. There are many free online resources out there as well.



#25 December

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Posted 15 February 2018 - 01:32 AM

Side note: many US library systems also loan online, making it possible to use a library card virtually using any online reader. You don't need a Kindle. KCLS and Seattle Public libraries both offer this. You have to get a bona fide card in person but then you can use it overseas.

 

 

I actually could not access my library's website while in Europe (tried a number of different times and different countries). Do sometimes libraries block their sites from being accessed out of the country?



#26 lolo

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Posted 15 February 2018 - 06:40 AM

I actually could not access my library's website while in Europe (tried a number of different times and different countries). Do sometimes libraries block their sites from being accessed out of the country?


Yes library and public domains being free depend on country laws. Which means many of these are not available outside the US. Also things like netflix change also depending on laws.

#27 ScoutTN

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Posted 15 February 2018 - 06:33 PM

No library! Ack!   :svengo:  :svengo:  :svengo:

 



#28 SporkUK

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Posted 16 February 2018 - 06:36 AM

I agree that it's important to look at first/only when looking at costing and planning though looking at those with later can help see what happens after one goes through the everything looks shiny and I need way more handholding with the oldest situation many of us fall into.  :lol:

 

My current Year 1 child I've spent practically nothing this year for him other than pencils and printing costs but he's the youngest of four, I have most of the reading books already as well as a PDF maths programme and I do most of his lessons outside of maths using a whiteboard or one of the books we have plus some reading aloud books & videos. 

 

With my first, I bought special pads of paper and a handwriting PDF curriculum that I used for my 2nd and 3rd but am just doing on a whiteboard with my fourth and used normal narrow lined paper once my 2nd and 3rd finished the curriculum, a maths book in a programme that did not work at all for my 2nd and 3rd so am now using a PDF programme, early reader Piper Books which my youngest hasn't started on yet, and way too much on various reading curriculums whereas my younger kids all used free PDF curriculums I used on a whiteboard (though I did buy extra for my 3rd because she struggled so much but ended up back later with a free pdf and writing). Plus lots of books and nature equipment and math manipulates and getting the videos and all that which all my younger kids can now use. And pretty much every gift-giving occasion comes with books as well which has added up to lots of full bookcases  :hurray:  

 

If lots of book reading makes you happy, then go for it though I agree with maximizing free sources and using Kindle just for the sake of your wallet and sanity on space, though I'm one who only tends to read short stories online and for novels and books mainly for the kids I do a lot of used book buying still. 


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