When you ask if it’s possible to homeschool for free, the short answer is yes. It’s entirely doable to educate your child without spending a dime. In this post I’ll give you some ideas for how to achieve homeschooling on a very tight budget.
Homeschooling can get expensive. Investopedia says that homeschooling can cost $700 to $1800 per year, per child. And then you have to add in other costs such as groceries (second, third and fourth breakfast), extra gas and potentially lost income.
Now multiply that by the number of kids you have and it can become prohibitive. So trying to homeschool on a shoestring might be something that you need to try and do. So let’s look at some ways to save on home education.
Use Your Library
If you have even a small library near you, you could get almost everything you need from there. You could use books alone to homeschool your kiddos. Books are great for…
- deep diving topics of interest
- using as the foundation of a unit study
- resources for project-based learning
- learning just about any subject out there.
But apart from books, many libraries offer extras that are free for the public:
- Some libraries loan out curricula and homeschooling workbooks.
- You can learn a language with language labs.
- There are some really cool free classes.
Become a Homeschool Blogger
Being a homeschool blogger has given me so many free resources. And I don’t even live in the US. If you live in the States, you have even more possibilities to get cool freebies.
You can set up a blog and linked social media accounts in a few minutes. And it’s even possible to get some free resources after you’ve written just a few posts. Here are some things you can do to get resources for free…
- Write a review of a curriculum. Some companies aren’t worried about your readership. They’re happy to give away a digital product because it doesn’t cost them anything more. But a genuine, well-written review with links to their site, is worth it for them.
- Share a physical homeschool product on Instagram. Micro influencers are on the rise. You don’t need thousands and thousands of followers. You just need your followers to trust you and be engaged. For some companies, this is even better than huge influencer.
- Send out a newsletter. Once again, you don’t necessarily need millions of names on your list. You just need to show that people open your newsletter and click through. Companies appreciate email marketing because the returns can be really high.
Start a Homeschool Group
By pooling your resources with other homeschooling families, you could also homeschool for free. Each family can give their time, in turn, to make the group free. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Make sure everyone is on the same page in terms of the structure of the group.
- Try and find families that are committed to keeping costs down and who can give of their time.
- Get a large enough group so that the amount of time needed is manageable for everyone.
By sharing the work of teaching or coming up with lessons, having a homeschool group can be fantastic. And your kids could learn so many interesting things from different people.
There are so many amazing free resources online. Once again, you can homeschool for free, with just an internet connection.
ThoughtCo. has a list of absolutely free homeschool resources you can use. But apart from the companies helping to educate people, homeschool bloggers often have amazing freebies too. I have a list of free unit studies.
And most of your favourite bloggers will have some really useful things for free as well. It’s well worth it to give them your email address for the value your receive from them.
Final Thoughts on Homeschool for Free
As you can see, with some time and effort, you can homeschool for free, But consider this. Is time an issue for you? As a working homeschool mom, I bet it is.
I started out homeschooling for free. But I’ve come to realize that it’s worth it to spend some money sometimes. Because the time and stress I save, makes up for the expense.
This is what I’ve discovered is worth it to spend some money on…
- Resources my kids really like. My children can be really resistant so if they like something, I make sure they get it!
- Online programmes. You get a lot of bang for your buck and they are often much cheaper than physical curricula. Many offer free trials and also deals for more than one child. And you have to do no prep or grading.
- Streaming services. Once again, they are not expensive and there are so many top-notch educational programmes. They can give you a guilt-free break, when you need it.
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