I think that cheap homeschooling does exist.You don't need a lot of fancy materials to teach your children. Here are five ways that I have used to make teaching my children affordable.
Most families that truly want to teach their children at home can find a way to afford it.
When I started homeschooling I bought everything new. Cheap homeschooling for me was a unit study. I liked using a unit study because a lot of the information was written in the manual.
I did not need a lot of reference materials. We bought a good encyclopedia and the reference materials that the unit study company recommended.
At the time I was able to buy the unit study and the reference materials in a bundle and save money.
I was also able to save because I did not have to buy textbooks for each of my children. I used the unit study for more than one year. I am still using the reference materials. Information on ideas like the water cycle does not change much.
I also like workbooks that are reproducible. Some even contain more than one grade. One geography book that I use contains all twelve grades. Now that is cheap homeschooling!
Before I buy a book or resource I want to know if I will be able to use it for more than one grade. Does the book's information progress from easy to difficult? Also I want to know if the book is based on good research or is it based on opinion. Before I buy a book I want to know if it is available at the library, so I can borrow instead of buy.
When I first started teaching having a dictionary and encyclopedia was important. Today you can use the internet.
The internet has a wealth of information and schooling helps. There are free sites that your child can practice math or spelling. For almost any subject you can find a site to help you. Some sites allow you to download free worksheets. You can find worksheets for math, language arts, social studies, and science. There are short educational videos that you can watch. There are also dictionaries and encyclopedias. Wikipedia is a good online encyclopedia.
Another way to save money is to make a lot of you own curriculum. For math make your own flash cards. 3 x5 card cut in half make great flash cards. For spelling keep track of the words that your child does not spell well. Use the words for spelling tests. For reading get books at the library.
The public library is a good place to find cheap homeschooling materials. You can find books, magazines, music, and DVDs. Just be careful that you know when the books are due, some libraries charge for overdue materials. Since we did not have internet access when I first started teaching we made good use of the library. We would go every three weeks. I had a list of books that I wanted either for reference or to read to my children. I would try and find an educational DVD that was related to the subject that I was teaching. My children were also allowed to pick out some books.
You can also save money by borrowing materials. Find some friends that home school and ask if you can share materials. If your friends have been homeschooling for a while they probable have books that you can use.
There are a few items that you should not borrow. Most workbooks and e-books have limited copy rights. Usually only one child in a family can use the materials. Educational subscriptions should also not be shared.
Also resist impulse buying. Make a homeschooling budget and stick to it. When you are consider buying books, look for items that you will use over and over. Try to buy used or on sale.
If you are careful you can find cheap homeschooling materials.