10 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing Homeschool Curriculum

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I must admit, homeschool buying season is one of my most favorite times of the year! I absolutely love shopping for new curriculum and don’t even get me started on school supplies. Yes, I’m THAT homeschool mom. I automatically start hearing the words “It’s the most wonderful time of the year…”.

BUT- I have to keep myself in check because I tend to get a bit carried away. Don’t let yourself get caught up in the curriculum frenzy. You have to be smart and have a plan…otherwise, you will purchase curriculum that won’t work for your children. Ask me how I know?!

To be sure you’re making smart curriculum choices, ask yourself these 10 questions…

10 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing Homeschool Curriculum
1. Does it mesh with your child’s learning style? If not, it doesn’t matter how much it appeals to you and how well the vendors market it, it simply won’t work for you.

2. Does it mesh with your teaching style? Is it set up in a way you would feel comfortable teaching? I ask this question, because just ask my children need to understand the material, I also have to understand how to teach the material.

3. Is it in your price range? This is where I struggle. I have to remember the budget. It may be an awesome curriculum that is well worth the money, but if it uses our entire homeschool budget, where am I going to find the money for the rest of our supplies? That is why I LOVE sales like The Build Your Bundle Homeschool Curriculum Sale where I can find the curriculum I want, from the publishers I love at prices of up to 96% off! Check out this year’s sale!

4. Does the publisher share the similar beliefs and values as your family? If you’re looking for a Christian-based curriculum, a secular publisher probably isn’t the right choice you and vice versa, if you’re looking for a secular curriculum, you probably wouldn’t choose a Christian publisher.

The BIGGEST Homeschool Sale of the Year - ends 5/30/17

5. Have you tried a similar curriculum before? How did it work for your family?

6. Do you want to try to teach multiple grade levels with the same curriculum? There are some companies (My Father’s World, for example) where you can use one curriculum to teach multiple grade levels. You would just supplement additional subjects tailored to each child as needed (math, reading, etc).

7. Have you read reviews of this product? I don’t rely solely on the vendors to tell me about a curriculum. I like to find out the opinions of homeschoolers who have tried it.

8. What type of curriculum are you looking for? Instructor-led or independent? Online or workbook based? Keep these requirements in the front of your mind while shopping.

9. Will you be reusing this curriculum for other children? If so, you may not be concerned about paying a little more for it.

10. Are you comfortable with the idea of setting aside the curriculum you’ve chosen if it is simply not working for your family? This is a big question to consider. I’ve heard stories of homeschooling parents who knew a curriculum was not working for their children but would not switch to something else. Please don’t buy a curriculum that controls you. You must make the curriculum work for you, you aren’t working for it. It doesn’t matter how much money you’ve invested. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. Continuing with it does nothing more than cause stress for you and your children. Homeschooling is a learning process. Some things work, some don’t. Pray about it and move on.





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This Post Has 81 Comments

  1. If I won, I would buy some extra reading books. Also, look for a pre-preschool curriculum for my son.

  2. This would be sooooo helpful with 4 kids and one income. We just started homeschooling 2 years ago and age gaps, so we have next to no reusable things yet.

  3. I would purchase our math curriculum through Rainbow Resources.

  4. I would probably buy a lot of books to round out our homeschool library and math and spelling for next year!

  5. Oh so many things to buy at Rainbow Resources ~ it would be hard to pick just one! 🙂

  6. I would purchase The Story of the World series.

  7. I would buy some science curriculum for our three school aged kiddos. And some literature to round our our shelves for independent reading, 🙂

  8. Thank you for the tips and chance to win. We are still new to homeschooling and haven’t tried an actual curriculums yet. I’m researching them as I type this. 🙂

  9. I get Language Arts Through Literature from them as well as Math Mammoth and Science kits. With another baby on the way this giveaway would be such a blessing to make our year really happen!

  10. What a great giveaway! I would be interested in purchasing history, science & foreign language curriculum.

  11. I would love to purchase some electives for my kids. I still would like to teach Latin and Spanish. I’d also get some more microscope slides. I could spend this so easily!!!

  12. Story of the World 2 Activity book and the CD

  13. Oh my goodness, where to start! I have been fretting I am so far behind my curriculum purchases this year. This would be fabulous. I have science yet to get, Apologia Astronomy, math, language arts. This would be such a huge blessing!

  14. I would buy some reading material, and some hands n things for my preschooler

  15. I would buy tons of stuff! Spelling, hands-on stuff for the preschooler, maybe some math.

  16. There are so many awesome things to buy. How does one choose?! Definitely some reading material, perhaps a little science, history, games – you name it! The shopping experience would be so much fun knowing that at the end you’re using a gift card and not worried about how you’re going to pay for it all. Thank you for having this sweepstakes!!

  17. Rainbow Resources is like a one stop shop of marvelous things! Such a great giveaway!

  18. After purchasing some Math and other curriculum for my children, I’d have to purchase some games other fun products to help our homeschooling be active and enjoyable.

  19. If I won, I would purchase high school curriculum. Gosh they’ve gotten that far already! Yikes!!

  20. I would purchase the curriculum for school this year.

  21. We recently lost our jobs and our home that was connected to ministry. We had to find homes for a zoos worth of animals, leave friends and sell our car. We have homeschooled for 9 years. We are now living with family doubled up for awhile. My husband found work again, but his salary was cut in half and our benefits are more expensive. I would use this gift card to continue homeschooling our 2 high school students and one jr high student. We have ordered from Rainbow Resource every year. This gift is a blessing to whomever receives it. Thank you for seeking to help a family.

    1. Sorry to interrupt lol I was just scrolling thru reading for the giveaway and I came across your post. I wish I could offer more support but I just wanted to let you know that your family is in my heart and prayers and I hope you know people care!! Have a fantastic day and never give up!!

  22. Wow! Great giveaway! I don’t know what I would purchase yet! So much to look at and think over!! This post was very useful and much needed! Thank you.

  23. I would probably buy Explode the Code

  24. I would probably buy the rest of the science series we are using. And if I could find the last few things I need to complete our Story of the World set, that would hop in the cart too. And I can’t remember the name off the top of my head but there’s a history book set that I have three of (passed down to us) that I would LOVE the rest of. Those are the big things I would grab if I had a chance!

  25. The Prairie Primer, Farther Up & Further In, Before Five in a Row, Life of Fred Elementary Kit, and dozens of books for read-alouds! Thank you for this very generous giveaway, I can’t even imagine how ecstatic I (and my kids!!!) would be if I won! Our budget is VERY tight, and this would be a God send!

  26. Thank you for offering this giveaway!

  27. I need to get Math curriculum for my son (not sure what yet) and the 4th volume of Story of the World.

  28. Would buy math curriculum.

  29. I would purchase books to support our classical homeschool curriculum!

  30. I’d purchase educational games & toys, and oh so many wonderful living books!!!!

  31. Thank you SO much! What fun! 🙂

  32. I would love to buy the boys English and math curriculum with this. ?

  33. I would buy lots of living books! And then convince my husband to build me a library, lol!

  34. I would buy art supplies & lots of books!

  35. Berean Builders science books, colored pencils, Lyrical Life Science

  36. Ooo…I don’t know yet what I would buy. Probably a bunch of reference supplemental resources.

  37. I would buy living books and any other books my children wanted.

  38. Thank you so much for this opportunity! I’m like you, I love the back to school supplies and have to be really careful not to go a little nuts when I see them on the shelves at the store. LOL I am also preparing for the new curriculum and trying to be mindful of what will work for my daughter and myself in the upcoming year so your article is very timely as is your giveaway.

  39. I would buy Mystery of History! Then, I’d look at fun things for learning!

  40. If I won this is would go directly to my “cart” of homeschool curriculum & materials that I am just hoping to buy before we start up again for a new year. 3 homeschoolers with a couple new ideas at curriculum itching to be bought 🙂

  41. This is a great giveaway! I would use it to buy the rest of our curriculum. Money is tight right now and at this point I may have to do without the Language Books I was going to get this year.

  42. If I won I would probably purchase art supplies

  43. I would buy Apologia’s Science Curriculum and future All About Spelling Levels that we need! I’m sure there are lots of other goodies I can fill my cart with as well 🙂

  44. The Learnables Spanish Levels 3 and 4 for my high school senior!

  45. I would love to finish my Story of the World collection! Still looking for some geography resources, too…

  46. Would finish purchasing our AOP curriculum for the new school year as well as books that add to our library.

  47. I’m still figuring out my year, so I’m not sure what exactly I would get. Science we are still working on. Also I know I could use some things for my younger two.

  48. I love Rainbow Resource Center. It’s my favorite online educational store.

  49. I would finish up with my children’s curriculum. I would purchase Apologia science and some cursive writing books.

  50. I would totally buy the rest of the Life of Fred math books!

  51. I would buy history and science resources! Those two subjects always get the least attention in our homeschool!

  52. Love this blog! So much helpful info. I definitely understand ditching curriculum if it isn’t working out. Winning this card would be awesome! My hubby just retired after 21 years of service from the AF, so this would help ease the strain of purchasing curriculum. I’m in need of a good writing program and have my eye on the prize!

  53. If I won, I’d buy some books and games that we have been wanting but couldn’t afford yet, like ticket to ride and settlers of catan. Also we’ve been needing some reading and math supplements that we would definitely get.

  54. I have so many necessary and “extra fun” things I could get for our four kiddos!

  55. Visual Latin, IEW, TT Pre-Algebra would be my picks.

  56. I would buy my son stuff for this school year. He is dyslexic and dysgraphic and this is our second year of homeschooling. He is a whole different kiddo since we brought him home. : ) Makes my Mom heart happy!!

  57. oh boy…this could set us up with math and handwriting and spelling for a couple years! 🙂 and maybe some fun teacher treats!

  58. If I won I would be able to buy our Math curriculum instead of spending hours and hours trolling the internet for it and not worry I was missing something important. This would be a huge blessing to my daughter and I as math is not hèr favorite subject anyway. I would also get to use the time I would have been searching on the internet to do more with her.

  59. I would buy several different books for preK Kinder 3rd and 4th

  60. Books (Life of Fred) and games, and maybe extra math stuff.

  61. First of all thank you for the chance to win, I would like to purchase Teaching Textbooks and Writing Curriculum and don’t know what else but it would be such a blessing

  62. We will be starting Five in a Row this year, so we could use the $500 from Rainbow Resources to buy the books and materials we will need for that and some more Saxon Math manipulatives.

  63. Not exactly sure what I would buy. Material for my two girls for upcoming school year.

  64. This is such a blessing! I would get Story of the World, some readers, some learning games…so fun!!

  65. How exciting!

    1. I have no idea what I would buy. It would be exciting to figure it out! This will be my first year homeschooling.

  66. If I won — oh there are so many things that would be great to have! There are some games and visual aids that would be nice. And then there are some history and science books that I’d really like but that would normally break the budget — but the $500 would cover much of the cost.

  67. If my family won it would allow us to continue using our current curriculum. We live overseas in Italy due to the Military and even with the extra money from my Husband’s deployment it’s still hard to purchase everything needed to teach four little ones. With this I could get the rest of this years and more than likely, next as well. I just want to say thank you for hosting this and whoever wins will be a very lucky family!!! God Bless!

  68. I would give this to my friend who is homeschooling her son.

  69. If I won I would buy non-fiction/learning books for each of my 4 children, a reading program and an independent slef-teaching curriculum for my 11 year old who really needs a push right now. Thank you so much for the chance to win!

  70. I’d get a few new science sets and lots of history supplement books!

  71. I would buy some algebra and upper math helps for our family.We are a family of 6, with 4 children that I am homeschooling. I would also look at non fiction books, preferably living books..

  72. This is WONDERFUL! I would purchase AAR2.

  73. This would be so helpful to add to our Living Books since we are getting away from textbooks. Also I have been thinking about All About Reading, but never taken the leap because of the cost. Thank you!

  74. I would buy art curriculum and supplies, and foreign language materials!

  75. We are just starting out homeschooling. There are lots of supplies needed. It would be great to have some assistance.

  76. $500 dollars would just about buy all the curriculum choices I have in my wish list for my oldest two. From math and reading to art and science. This would be a tremendous blessing for my family as we usually have to buy piece by piece over a few months time.

  77. I’d love to win! We’d love lots of hands-on manipulatives, games, and art supplies!

  78. Oh my I so wish I would have seen this sooner than now!! Oh well I guess there is always next year 🙂

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Hi, there! I’m Heather Bowen, and I am so glad you’re here.

My passion lies in helping homeschool moms balance marriage, motherhood, homemaking, and homeschooling all while remaining sane!

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