View Full Version : Weekly Poll: What is your main source for buying homeschool materials?

12-02-2010, 10:35 AM
I've felt pretty doggone fortunate for the past few years in the curriculum department. Our Time4Learning program included everything we needed for math and language arts, and we simply had to supplement (usually with free stuff online) for other materials. But once my youngest had aged out of T4L (except for Algebra this year) it was back to the curriculum grindstone. Grrr. We're very interest-led, so a lot of our materials come from whatever we are studying at the time. Otherwise, we check Homeschool Buyers Co-op for deals, try to buy local books, or fall back on the Amazon.com bandwagon.

I know homeschoolers buy materials all over the place...and the biggest response, if I had included it, would more than likely be: "Wherever they are the cheapest!!" ;) But if you had to choose one MAIN source where you buy the majority of your materials from, what would it be?

12-02-2010, 10:51 AM
I'd love to spend the time to find bargains, but honestly, I'm just keeping my head above water. I look for reviews of the items I'm interested in, then go to B&N, usually, to buy it. I'm a member, so I save some on the price and on shipping. Otherwise, we use free online and library resources.

12-02-2010, 11:21 AM
I said "other" because we bought so few books for this year, about 8 for actual curriculum. We ordered math workbooks from Sonlight (got the texbooks used from another homeschooler in town), a few books that we would need throughout the year or for multiple years from Amazon, and found a couple at our local used bookstore. The vast majority are from the library. I look forward to reading other folks' responses, though. I'm sure I'll be ordering books in the future, especially when I try to tackle science and history in a more organized fashion.

For non-book materials, I've had great luck at the Dollar Store--pads of paper lined for handwriting practice, workbooks for random subjects like telling time and counting money, story starters, a wall calendar, office supplies, etc.

12-02-2010, 12:41 PM
Our only bookstore doesn't carry any curriculum items and has a very limited offering of books, so we order from Amazon when we visit family in the States and pick it up there. Otherwise we rely on the library (which is almost as limiting as the bookstore). It's really hard to get organized in advance; even ordering books from other libraries in the province can take a month or more. I was glad I could download Math Mammoth and print it out at home to avoid the crazy high prices of getting things shipped. For daily stuff--paper, ink, school supplies--we get from Target when we're down in Maine.

12-02-2010, 01:48 PM
I have to admit- I'm a currclick junkie. I have an overall outline of what needs to be done whatever month of the year and then I like to supplement whatever reflects what the kids are interested in at the moment. Also their *helpful* newsletters shouting NEW NEW NEW can spur some impulse shopping. I also pick up books and workbooks from Ebay, paperback swap, local used bookstores and the big chain bookstores.

12-02-2010, 02:16 PM
I guess I get most things from Amazon or B&N. I haven't purchased a lot so far except books since I'm a book-junkie - I have a bunch of different encyclopedias, DK books, etc. What curriculum I have bought - SOTW & activity guide from Amazon but pdf student pages from the publisher; ETC - Amazon; AAS - publisher. I've bought a few things directly from Evan Moor and plan to get RSO direct from Pandia. I bought the RS Abacus and activity book from the publisher but we're not using it anymore.

Hmmm, I seem pretty even between retail and publishers if you don't count books.

12-02-2010, 02:58 PM
It depends on what materials we're talking about. I buy a lot from Rainbow Resource. A good portion of the arts & crafts materials, I buy at Oreintal Trading or local craft stores. Regular books generally come from B&N, Bookcloseouts, or local bookshops. Science tools & materials often come from Home Science Tools or Edmund Scientific.

Stella M
12-02-2010, 04:34 PM
Online from Australian homeschool suppliers and from independent book shops.

12-02-2010, 05:37 PM
I put "Directly from the publisher" because I got my main curriculum from Calvert. Though I buy workbooks and other books from Barnes and Noble, I have the educator discount card there and I keep getting awesome coupons in my email for them.

12-02-2010, 06:54 PM
I do a lot of shopping online, and this year I was able to buy supplies from a local shop that went out of business. I don't know what I will do in the future as we are ever evolving in this process.

12-02-2010, 08:18 PM
While we are secular homeschoolers, we do participate in a marginally-Christian homeschool group once a month (though it takes place in a church, the only overtly Christian aspect of it is a prayer at the opening). Through them we have a membership in an organization that gets discounts from certain retailers and conducts a curriculum fair once a year which features both Christian and secular vendors. We bought most of this year's third-grade curriculum there (including Teaching Textbooks for math) and were able to find almost all secular materials (the spelling workbook has some Christian vocabulary but not heavily so). We've supplemented through online purchases for things like Rosetta Stone, but I think the curriculum fair is a great way to see all the possibilities out there and kick the tires before buying. I wish we'd done that before we bought Saxon Math. I know some love it, but Hurricane (and his mom and I) found the repetition mind-numbing.

12-02-2010, 10:27 PM
This year we are mostly time4learning.com and used books from half.com.

12-02-2010, 11:03 PM
I chose online retail warehouses because I would say the bulk of what I buy comes from amazon, and that includes used items from amazon merchants. Just the other day I scored dd's next Saxon math text (gently used) for $4.99 from an amazon merchant. I saved about $35. Yes, I was doing the happy dance.

12-03-2010, 12:29 AM
I said 'other' - I use Amazon, Ebay, local used book stores and retailers, garage sales - where ever I find something I like or the boys show an interest in :)

12-04-2010, 04:42 AM
I chose other because I pick up curriculum in many differents places. We use the local library extensively. Amazon and I are on close personal terms. At least I feel that way. I also use the local dollar store and retailers. A little bit here and a little bit there. Also, I use edHelper.

Mother of David, Tiffany, Daniel, Terry & Lil' Martha

12-04-2010, 10:28 AM
We would have to be directly from publisher, also, I think. Our curriculum comes from MBTP.
I order other things from Amazon, homeschool buyers co-op, currclick, curriculum fairs, used online...wherever I can find something interesting!
We also use Netflix. LOL

12-05-2010, 07:29 AM
We use the Homeschool Buyer's Coop (http://www.homeschoolbuyersco-op.org), the Homeschool Supercenter (http://www.homeschoolsupercenter.com), Amazon, free on-line (Internet) resources, the Teaching Company (http://www.teach12.com), and the local library to find or build our courses.

12-06-2010, 12:13 PM
Rainbow Resource and Amazon are my first 2 choices. Then the manufacture.

12-06-2010, 04:58 PM
Other....I buy from a variety of sources, depending on what we need.

12-06-2010, 05:43 PM
Yeah, i dont think i could pick a main one. if i had 2 choices . . . from publisher, and warehouses. Well, really, this year:

From publisher: MCT and Singapore (and T4L)
From co-op: language, discovery streaming last year, probably some chester comix in a year or two
From amazon: story of science, internet-linked encyclopedia of history
then things from netflix, library, and occasionally freinds just hand me something.

12-08-2010, 04:09 PM
Love reading the responses!

12-09-2010, 01:31 PM
Wow - that's a tough one!

I've gotten some things on eBay, purchased some things through CurrClick, gotten a number of things from FreeCycle, hit Scholastic warehouse sales, various bookstores, my MIL (who used to be a PS teacher), my SIL (who also homeschools) and we take classes locally. I think I'm all over the place. :)