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  1. #1

    Default Can you piece together a curriculum for $100. or less?

    Okay, could you put together a curriculum for $100. or less (not including paper, art supplies, pens, etc.)? I can't recall if there have been other threads like this, but I was unable to locate them, if there were. I have a couple of friends with younger children who live in NJ who were hit hard by Sandy and are interested in hs'ing and keeping things as inexpensive as possible.

    What are your must haves? Some of my ideas so far have been Math Mammoth (purchased via Homeschool Buyer co-op when on sale), (used) Usborne science encyclopedia as a spine, (used) SOTW or Usborne History encyclopedia as a spine. I'm kind of stumped for suggestions regarding Spelling and Geography along with everything else though.

    Both families have children around 6, 7, 8, and 9. Two children per family.

    This is your mission, should you choose to accept it . I'm going to go look again at different options, but I'd love to have numerous suggestions to pass along.

    Thank you!
    Last edited by Misha; 04-16-2013 at 12:13 AM.
    S - '06 and G - '05 - always homeschooled

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Enlightened
    Join Date
    Mar 2013


    There are TONS of options for keeping your costs low! Lots of books can be checked out of the library instead of having to be purchased. Many homeschooling moms create curricula and sell it for low prices on their sites, there are free curriculums online, free printables/worksheets, etc... this is my first year homeschooling (still "deschooling," really), and so far I bought the 5th grade build your library curriculum for $35 and the Roadtrip USA curriculum from Confessions of a Homeschooler for $18. With BYL, she recommends purchasing the books needed for your own library, but a lot of them could be checked out if needed. I'm still pinning and gathering all sorts of resources, as I need to keep expenses to a minimum. Hope that helped a bit!

  4. #3


    $100 per child or per family?

    Here's what I would recommend...

    Math: MEP (free) or Math Mammoth ($34 per child)
    Phonics (if needed): Blend Phonics (free), Progressive Phonics (free) and Starfall (free) - plus the library (free)
    Spelling: Spelling Plus ($15)
    Grammar: KISS (free) or Grammarland (free)
    Writing: establish a routine a la Bravewriter - copywork/dictation, poetry tea, freewriting, narration once weekly and a writing project once a month
    Reading: the library (free)
    History: Story of the World ($10)
    Science: the library (free) and The Nature Connection ($12)
    Logic: Wakeruppers ($16) or Logic Countdown ($12 per child)

    That's just over $50 for a family not counting printing costs or if they chose Math Mammoth. I would either spend the rest on enrichments like a "fun" math book like Primary Challenge Math or logic games or good reference books. Or I would put it aside and plan to spend it on whatever subject simply wasn't working. So if a kid isn't improving their spelling, you might decide you need to get Sequential Spelling or All About Spelling or Spalding or something. Or, if math wasn't working, it would allow you to switch.
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  5. #4


    If they like to read, Charlotte Mason - style homeschooling with library or used books is effective and inexpensive. It uses techniques like narration, copywork, notebooking, etc, which are essentially free. There is a lot of information online.

    Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding -- $10 on kindle.
    Getting Started With Latin (or Spanish, or soon to be French) -- $10 on kindle.
    Story of the World -- not very expensive, activity guide is optional.
    BBC Dancemat typing is free.
    (these are all great programs that I use)

  6. #5
    Senior Member Arrived Mum's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
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    A library card, an Internet connection, and lots of paper, pencils, markers, etc.

    Pinterest is a great resource for making your own learning activities with simple items you have in the house already.
    Get your geek on.

  7. #6


    Lots of good suggestions already.

    Math Mammoth (bought it through the co-op)
    A subscription to Teachers File Box from Evan Moor (bought through the co-op) that we use for Grammar, Spelling, and for fun supplemental math, science and history materials.
    Scholastic books from the Dollar Days - more fun supplements for phonics, reading, math, science, history.
    Library card.
    Internet access.

    I make a yearly trip to a huge used bookstore up in Connecticut. I can buy a ton of chapter books, encyclopedias and readers there fairly cheap.
    Back home after three years!!
    Steph - college Graduate!!!
    George - 8/2005
    Vicki - 7/2007
    Dottie's Homeschool Universe

  8. #7

    B1 - 11 (6th grader)
    B2 - 15 (10th grader)

    Homeschooled for three years, but due to various circumstances, we put them back into public school. Still here because I feel like I found my tribe.

  9. #8


    Our math curriculum alone costs $100 but, yup, I could do it. I'd still buy the math curriculum we use - Teaching Textbooks - then use the library and Google books for the rest.

    You can find all sorts of freebies online, such as Ray's Arithmetic (math), The Handbook of Nature Study, and more. The Tanglewood School also lists many inexpensive options.
    Last edited by JinxieFox; 04-16-2013 at 10:19 AM.
    Mumsy to Gavin (13-year-old artsy boy) and Rowan (3-year-old disco queen)

  10. #9
    Senior Member Evolved
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    Nov 2012
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    This would be my take on 1st grade for $100:
    Handwriting - HWOT My Printing Book, $9
    Reading - Reading Pathways by D. Hiskes, $15 used, and library books
    Science - BFSU, $20 used, with library books
    Math - Singapore Math 1A& 1B (or 2A/2B if ready), workbooks only, $27, or ~$18 in Kumon workbooks
    History - Human Odyssey Vol. 1, used via Amazon, $15, plus library books

    And then if the second child was in second grade, I would combine them for science and history, add the next level up for handwriting and math, and use only library books for reading.
    Mama of one DS, class of 2026;
    recovering schoolteacher;
    lifelong bookworm

  11. #10


    By the way, guys, I'm pretty sure the BFSU ebook is only $5 as a pdf.
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    Want help homeschooling or sending kids to college?

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