5 Easy Ways to Save Money Homeschooling

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This post is sponsored by the Barnes & Noble MasterCard, powered by Barclaycard. All opinions are my own. #BNschoolsavings

5 Easy Ways to Save Money Homeschooling - practical tips that anyone can implement from SimplifyLiveLove.com

Homeschooling can be an expensive undertaking, but it certainly doesn’t have to. This September marks my seventh year of homeschooling in some capacity and I’ve learned a few tips and tricks over the years to help keep the expenses down. Here are five easy ways I’ve found to save money homeschooling. I’d love to hear what you’d add.

5 Easy Ways to Save Money Homeschooling

5 Easy Ways to Save Money Homeschooling Barnes & Noble from SimplifyLiveLove.com

We headed out to Barnes & Noble recently so my kids could pick out something fun to add to our homeschool curriculum line-up. We’ve got a busy year planned, full of lots of reading and projects, but gathering all of the items for their curriculum did not break my bank. Here’s how I’m homeschooling on a budget!

1. Join a homeschool assistance program, if you have the option.

We open enrolled out of our district to another district especially for their awesome homeschool assistance program. Not only does belonging to the HSAP keep the state of Iowa happy with us, it also provides a lot of great resources – an awesome lending library, two teachers to help when I have questions, cost-free field trips, a stipend for supplies, and a classes for my children. We really love the HSAP for the friendship, support, and benefits it provides. It really helps me keep my out of pocket expenses down.

2. Take advantage of the library.

Not only can you check books out for free {as long as you remember to take them back…}, but our local library offers fantastic inter-library loan program, and they have free classes for kids too! I love to use the inter-library loan before purchasing a new book. It really helps me save my money to look at a book I think I might like before buying it because quite often the book isn’t as cool as I thought it would be and I have a really bad track record with actually returning items. Our library also offers the most amazing free classes for kids, including book clubs, dissection, art, and more! We really love the library and our awesome librarians.

3. Scour the internet for free resources.

I’ve found many wonderful free homeschooling resources just by using my friend Google. My kids are learning to type thanks to BBC’s Dance Mat Typing. I love Donna Young’s homeschooling printables and resources, and pinterest has a wealth of information and exciting things to try. I always start with google when trying to figure something out for our homeschool.

4. Barter with friends.

Through friends, we’ve been able to start an amazing homeschool coop. We have classes once a week for ten weeks, twice a year, and the kids absolutely love it. It does cost a little bit, but it’s really very minimal, and the rewards are fantastic. Because one parent from each family must be involved (teaching, helping, cleaning, babysitting) we are able to keep the cost down. And by working with a variety of friends all with different abilities and interests, my kids are exposed to a lot of things I wouldn’t teach them. My 11 year old gets to take a stop-motion animation class this year! And my nine year old will do a junk drawer robotics class.  You don’t have to do a formal coop like we’re doing, but even switching one class with a friend could be a benefical move. You speak Spanish and she likes to sew? Great! You teach a Spanish class and she can teach sewing! Win-win, in my book. Think about your strengths and see what you can do.


5. Use the Barnes & Noble Mastercard to save on textbooks, school supplies, and more!

Some purchases are simply unavoidable. I have enjoyed credit cards with reward programs since I got my first credit card at age 18. While I do also like spending cold hard cash, I consider credit card reward programs free perks, as long as you can pay your bill in full each month.

The Barnes & Noble MasterCard has a lot of perks that could really benefit homeschoolers and college students! Using this credit card wisely could mean extra money in your pocket each month for spending on fun things, like more books at Barnes & Noble. Some of the perks of the Barns & Nobel Mastercard include:

• 5% back at Barnes & Noble when you use your card at any Barnes & Noble store or online at BN.com
• $25 Barnes & Noble gift card after your first purchase
• $25 Barnes & Noble gift card every time you reach 2,500 points
• 1 reward point for every $1 spent on all other purchases (excluding Barnes and & Noble purchases), even for everyday purchases like gas and groceries
• No annual fee
• Complimentary FICO® Credit Score

According to The College Board’s Trends in College Pricing Report, the average cost for books and supplies last year was $1,225 at public colleges and $1,244 at private colleges. Using the Barnes & Noble MasterCard for those purchases at campus Barnes & Noble bookstores or at BN.com could give you an immediate $60 savings. I’d take it!

5 Easy Ways to Save Money Homeschooling from SimplifyLiveLove.com

We love browsing at Barnes & Noble. It’s a real treat for my kids to get to go there as I prefer to go alone. There have to be small pleasures for the homeschooling mom, right? Coffee, new books, all sorts of fun stacks to browse, it’s just much more enjoyable without my children. But you can see from the above photo that my kids enjoy browsing there too. {You the farm girl out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the farm girl. I love my kid’s quirky outfit choices.}

How do you save money homeschooling? Please share a tip! To find out more about the Barnes & Noble credit card, please visit their website or head over here to see what’s going on in your local Barnes & Noble store.

About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long-time green-living enthusiast, and rural Iowa mom of four. She empowers families to grow and eat seasonal, local foods; to reduce their ecological footprint; and to come together through impactful travel.

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1 Comment

  1. I always enjoy these insights into your homeschooling life. Perhaps it’s my work in public education? The contrast is fascinating, and I love it.