Like many homeschooling families, we are primarily a one-income family on a tight budget. Purchasing curriculum for multiple grade levels can be expensive, especially if you are purchasing it all new. One way we save on curriculum costs is by utilizing one of my favorite resources – our local library.
Depending on the curriculum you’re using, you might be able to find books from your reading lists there. While you could purchase all of your readers, obtaining them from a library can save both money and space. Our home has bookshelves full of curriculum and school books, so I borrow the books from the library whenever I can.
Depending on where you live, your library might also offer a traveling library service. We live in the country, and every other Wednesday the Bookmobile comes to our area. The Bookmobile is a school bus that has been redone on the inside to include shelves, books, a check-in area, and a check-out area. When I request books from the library, I often have them sent to the Bookmobile. Picking them up from the Bookmobile and looking through other available titles is a fun afternoon activity for my family.
If you can’t find a particular book at your own library, you could try an inter-library loan program. For $1.00, I can request a book from another library in another county or state, and it’s sent directly to my library when it’s available. Be sure to keep up with the due dates on these books, though, as the fees for having an overdue book could be higher. The last time I used a book from another library system, the cost for turning it in late was $1.00 a day. Although I’m sometimes late returning books, I made sure I turned that one in on time.
Don’t forget to check into your library’s internet site as well. In our town, we’re able to search for, request, and renew books online. Our library system even sends courtesy emails when materials are due within three days.
So check out your local library. It can be a convenient resource for homeschoolers – and it’s free!
By Guest Blogger: Samantha Bell
Homeschooling Curriculum by SmartTutor.com