Deciding to homeschool your children is a big step in the education world. There are many steps involved in determining the time and resources involved in taking on your children’s learning. Once you start diving into the curriculum and figuring out extracurricular activities, you may start seeing your budget quickly dwindle. You may be wondering how to properly homeschool while also keeping your finances in order.
When we say to set boundaries, we mean on your wallet, not your imagination! There are many different ways to save on schooling supplies, no matter the time of year or what subject you’re teaching. Having a clear budget in mind and sticking to it will help you stay on task and not get overwhelmed. And this goes for your children and yourself. If your kids are participating in multiple sports each, set a limit on how many they can participate in for the year, and make sure it’s even. If you set two sports per child, this will help your children focus on which sports they’re really interested in and keep your budget down. The same with any field trips or museum trips; setting a number for the school year will avoid any last minute, expensive day trips that may eat up more of your money than you realize.
It’s far too easy to let go and allow your children to sign up for a lot of different extracurricular activities to make up the bulk of their socialization time. But this method can backfire as your children may feel overwhelmed or lose interest in the activities, and you’ve already spent the money on these programs. If your children feel limited with the number of sports or activities, have them sign up for different or new sports each year until they find their niche.
Don’t Forget Your Library
Another highly sustainable option for all your books is the local library. Rather than buying the reading books your children need for the school year, make sure they aren’t already available at the library for free. If your child really enjoyed reading a particular book, then it can be a gift for a later time or holiday. There may even be some textbooks available at your library, or similar books you can use as additional reading or to start on a topic before moving into textbooks and workbooks. There are educational DVDs and audio books as well, which can add another medium of learning for your children. Libraries will also hold different activities and book readings for a range of ages, giving your kids another outlet for socialization and fun (while learning!).
The ways in which you can save money while homeschooling is far and wide! Visiting your library and limiting some activities is just the tip of the iceberg! Getting creative on school supplies, learning, and field trips can help you cut costs easily. Even sharing school materials with other parents who homeschool can be beneficial. Being realistic while also thrifty can help you save hundreds each year!