This is curriculum buying time of year for me. Starting right after the beginning of this semester (last month), I began making my lists for each of the kids for fall. I have a little planning page for each one of them where I list the curriculum they will use for each subject as well as make notes on what I need to purchase. I began in January because I knew I'd need to purchase several items this year.
When I was on the Crew, I was able to make those lists with almost no purchases. Since I'm not on the 2017 Crew, I knew I'd need to use some of our tax refund money to make purchases for the 2017-2018 school year. I started by taking a look at what we already had on our shelf and in downloads. I've found several things over the years that I forgot we owned and had been planning to purchase. Our budget is tight so that's never a good thing! I filled in their lists with what we could use from our stash.
Once that was finished, I made a list of any workbooks I would need to go with items we already had. Then I started looking at choices for the subjects I needed to fill. Honestly we have so much curricula that I still didn't need as much as I thought! I needed most of the books I selected for Apple to read for literature next year. I also needed a writing curriculum for Speedy.
The kids also had some requests like CTCMath. For those items on my shopping list, I started pricing them and checking to see if they typically have sales. I purchased several of our must haves this week using current discounts or specials. I only have 2 things left to purchase, and I know those will be on sale sometime in the coming months so I will wait for a special.
Some folks buy a boxed curriculum set and skip all those steps I mentioned above. We love variety and enjoy picking and choosing our own books for each subject. We also like to incorporate a mixture of worksheets, literature, textbooks, online, and DVDs. As much fun as all that is, there is extra work involved. I do however keep our total purchases well below those boxed set prices. I also buy used when possible. My favorite place to shop used is homeschoolclassifieds.com.
How do you select your homeschool choices each year? Do you do all free, online curriculum? Borrow it all from friends or a library? Purchase the boxed set?