Homeschool For Cheap

The websites I use to keep my homeschooling costs down!

I have been homeschooling my two fourth graders since August. It has been an adventure that makes me both smile and cry. But it has been a pretty cheap adventure.

I knew what the expectations for 4th grade learning in my state before I planned because I got them from the Dept of Education website. I immediately started looking for resources that I could use to teach the kids. I found several Facebook pages that offered so much help and guidance; I want to share some of my free resources with you in case you are homeschooling or thinking about homeschooling.

teacherspayteachers.com- there are free downloads which vary in usefulness. There are also plenty of items you could pay for.

123homeschool4me.com- more free worksheets

allinonehomeschool.com- free curriculum

typing.com- a free resource to teach students to type

turtlediary.com- there are plenty of educational games and assessment tests available for free with ads; there are memberships available to make the games ad free.

Pinterest- there are a lot of blogs that have great hands on learning ideas or experiments. I love doing anything that makes learning more fun!

funbrain.com- has both free content and things that need to be paid for. I do like the reading selection that they have.

Prodigy- this is a math website that again has both parts that are free and parts that need to be paid for. My kids want me to pay for the membership because they can’t play some of the games all the way through.

spellingtraining.com- pretty self explanatory. We are going to start using this one more. My kids spelling is pretty atrocious.

readtheory.com- they help improve reading comprehension

YouTube, Netflix, Prime and Disney+ have plenty of documentaries and videos for visual learning.

Amazon actually has learning material you can purchase and download. They are pretty reasonably priced AND they go on sale occasionally. These are some of the items I purchased from Amazon and I really enjoy them, I did get them on sale… I think 50%-75% off, so keep an eye out on them!!

The product links below are affiliate links, if you make a purchase from the link I get a small portion of the sale.

Reading Comprehension

Grammar

Multiplication and Division

We’re in the End Game

Yes, yes we are

Halloween has passed, which means it’s Christmas time!! Lol, I kid… sort of

Me

This past week did not go the way I wanted at all. I have sciatica and this past week it flared up for 5 days so for 5 days I could barely move without being in extreme pain. So any and all plans I had fell through.

Well almost every plan. I had to make my daughter’s Halloween costume and like a true procrastinator I waited until the week before to even start. She wanted to be Harley Quinn and at first I vetoed that idea because she is only 9 and Harley costumes tend to be sexy but I came around to the idea if I could make the costume myself.

Grabbed these from Amazon

I tried dying them with Rit and that did not work well AT ALL. So I decided to paint the clothes with acrylic paint and that worked surprisingly well!

I have decided that I won’t be putting my kids face’s on here anymore. People can download your pictures right off your blog… I didn’t know that.

I also did 3 mock classes for VIPKIDS, still trying to get approved to teach. I am not happy that I haven’t passed yet. But I’m hoping that it will all be worth it! I am excited to have a job again and financially contribute to the household. My next mock class is tomorrow night so happy thought would be appreciated.

Halloween was pretty amazing, our neighborhood went all out this year. The kids got 3 giant bowls of candy!

Just a random pic of my 2 biggest

The kids are learning about Native American history this month. I am pretty excited for the crafts I have planned and we will probably take another trip to the State Museum for some hands on learning.

NanoWriMo started yesterday!! Matt and I are both very excited, I got 1832 words logged day one and Matt logged in over 650. I stayed up later last night to type more.

The baby has balanitis. I spent 2 hours at urgent care yesterday to get him diagnosed. I hate when my babies are sick and this particular child does not take meds well… so this is going to be a struggle. He is on liquid antibiotics, tylenol and ibuprofen for pain/fever. He also had 2 creams that I need to apply to the infected area several times a day.

So our November is full already! I have to start taking down Halloween decorations and getting Christmas ones ready to go up.

How was everyone’s week? Do you have any exciting plans for November? When do you put up Christmas decorations??

Feeling Overwhelmed

I was supposed to do a blog post on Weds for Bonnie’s Book Club. If you were anticipating that, I apologize. I’ve been a little overwhelmed.

I have been biting off more than I can chew lately, it’s a pretty constant problem in my life. I constantly want to go go go but I put so much on my plate, then my depression kicks in so I get NOTHING done. My anxiety then let’s me know what a worthless POS I am and we go round and round.

BUT some great things are slowly happening… the kids and I got some Halloween decorations up

We got some much needed yard work done, we chopped down 5 trees and sprayed the weeds, I might need to do that again.

I have lost 6lbs!! I know that is a seemingly minor victory BUT for me it’s pretty huge.

Homeschool is going… ok… ish… there are great days and days when the kids and I scream at each other. We finally got to the library (our local is closed for renovations). The closest one we can go to is 45min away… and it is in a temporary building. But it was great to get new books!

I have done SO MANY LOADS OF LAUNDRY this week. I gave clothes away, donated some can goods.

I have been working really hard to get my life in order, but I still have SO MUCH TO DO.

That’s where I am this Friday night. I hope you all have a fantastic weekend!! Got any definite plans? We have 90% chance of rain so we are staying in.

Homeschooling

I have wanted to homeschool for years and I am taking advantage of the insanity of the world to make it happen.

My desire to homeschool started when my oldest was in first grade the first time. He struggled A LOT with reading, writing, social interaction,  and well, just about everything.

My take away from that disastrous year was I wanted to homeschool him. I wanted to teach him in a way that he would benefit, understand and enjoy. But I was a single mom and it was my job to work.

Flash forward about 4 years and I am remarried and a stay at home mom during a pandemic where it became the “it” thing to homeschool. I jumped on the bandwagon!

I went back and forth over my decision, got input from my husband and family. Some super supportive some really hurtful. I researched requirements and costs associated. Being a one income family, I wanted to keep our costs low.

My first step was being added to homeschool groups on FB. Specifically groups in my area. Those moms have so much knowledge and experience it was great to ask their opinions. In our state it is required that we are in a homeschool association so I researched those extensively and asked for recommendations.

After deciding on an association I started to research co-ops. I didn’t even know that co-ops were a thing, (total newbie) but they are and they are EXPENSIVE. I was looking at these prices and my mind was blown. I could not afford all of that. The main takeaway for co-ops seemed to be social interaction.

Well we live in a social media day and age soooooooo I hoped on my trusty Facebook and BLAMO!!!! Playdates that are free and possibly fun for me.

So all that was left was the curriculum (and whatever supplies I needed). When you start looking at curriculums make sure your association does not require a certain one, or have it be religious (I went secular for my curriculum… I teach God outside of school). Also check what proof they require, I need calendar days tracked, and proof of their work.

So I started my search where I always start my search… Amazon… and Amazon told me that curriculums are EXPENSIVE. They were a complete WTF moment.

3 of these are ONE subject!

Enter more peoples opinions, I was told online public school was free?! Worth a looking into…. But they are all online and you are logged in for hours in front of a computer screen and you have to go at the school’s pace. For my daughter that probably would have worked, but for my son, not so much.

Back to the face place to stalk the answers about curriculums and it seemed most moms (who were not doing religious based learning) made up their own…. but how??? This is where I am semi proud of myself (the diet coke of proud). I went to the Dept of Education website for our state and found what they require!! That easy. I pieced together my own curriculum.

If you get it…..

I bought things from the dollar store, Five Below, Amazon (has digital teaching items) and I found videos on YouTube to make learning more interesting and less mommy monotonous. Teacherspayteachers.com has free downloads, they are not entire curriculums but they are some worksheets you can use to insure comprehension.

So we have been “in school” since 8/3, Monday thru Friday, except for 2 days when I thought I was dying of Corona. My son loves homeschooling and is actually retaining information. He still struggles with writing so I’m hoping to have to research how to help him there. My daughter hates it, but only because she isn’t with her friends. She is excelling and because I make up the curriculum she can move ahead.

Not every day is perfect, I am learning quickly though what works and what doesn’t for them. I am praying that we are successful and that I am showing them learning can be fun. This on-going experience is reminding me what amazing kids I have, and for that I am forever grateful.

Remembering 9/11

This will definitely not be the only homeschool blog, I want to talk fied trips and money saving tips. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. I am obviously not an expert but I have a team of them on my Facebook pages!