Our family as been in the homeschool adventure for the last 13 years. I believe we have purchased almost every type of homeschool curriculum under the sun.
Notice how I emphasized purchased and not completed or even used?
I will admit, I have spent entirely too much on homeschool curriculum than I care to share that ended up sitting on our shelves without ever really been used. I’m sure my ex-husband would be glad to enlighten you too on the sore subject.
Over the years, I have made a conscious decision to ask myself these 5 simple questions before making any sort of homeschool curriculum purchases. This is especially helpful if I am going to attend a homeschool convention. Trust me, the smell of new homeschool curriculum can literally make me do a back flip. Okay, maybe not a back flip, but definitely a cart-wheel. It makes me literally bonkers which have resulted in poor choices in the past.
Here are the questions that I MUST ask myself each and every time I get a wild hair to purchase something new to add to our homeschool shelves.
5 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing Homeschool Curriculum
1. Did I Pray? Have I diligently asked the Lord to help me in making the right homeschool curriculum decisions for our homeschool? If I do not have a definite good feeling about the product for whatever reason, I hold off. I know rather well that the curriculum will still be available for purchase after I have received confirmation. I don’t let a sale persuade me either. I’d rather pay full price on something than have it sit on our homeschool shelf collecting dust.
2. Did I Evaluate our Homeschool Goals? Going over our homeschool mission statement and goals each year assures me that we are on the right track for our family. Does the curriculum align with our homeschool goals? If not, I don’t give it a second thought.
3. Does it Meet My Children’s Learning Style? If the homeschool curriculum doesn’t include my children’s learning style, I know I am in for a rocky and tearful year. In order to have smooth sailing, the curriculum must keep my children’s interest as well as keep them joyfully learning. I don’t mind if the curriculum covers a multitude of learning styles, but it must at least be able to equip how my child learns efficiently. This is one of the biggest benefits of homeschooling.
4. What are the Limitations? This is probably where I have made the biggest mistake in my homeschool buying journey. The curriculum requires too much preparations or other costly supplies that I get overwhelmed and throw in the towel. I need to make sure that the preparation fits into my time schedule. We are using this kindergarten curriculum because there is little to no prep for me. Everything is already printed in a neat organized binder. There is only so much time in my day, I have really been taking this to heart since I am a work at home, single, and homeschool mom. Also, does it fit into my homeschool budget? Just because it’s more costly, doesn’t mean it’s better and your child will become Einstein with it.
But you knew that, right?
5. Did I do my Research Homework? I ask my friends on our Blessed Beyond a Doubt facebook group if anyone has any experience with this particular homeschool product. I ask a lot of questions. People love to give their opinions on what works and doesn’t meet their expectations for their family. I read numerous reviews on homeschool blogs that I admire. I have been known to ask the author any questions that weren’t answered for me in the review. I don’t mind one bit when my readers ask me questions in regards to something I used with my children. It’s my job. I love to encourage others in their homeschool journey.
And I am going to add a #6, Did I PRAY again?. After all, if I get the ok from the Lord, it’s just my responsibility to deliver the information to my children. I had someone enlightened me with those words of wisdom years ago, and it has taken a load off my chest.
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Do you have any other questions you ask yourself before purchasing homeschool curriculum?