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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Letting go . . .

I am sure there are many homeschoolers out there that are like me - - you know you're out there.  You have stacks and stacks of curriculum hanging around waiting for the next child to come along and use it.  This is usually a good idea -- especially if your children are close in age, but what if the gap is more than two years - - should we save it?  Curriculum changes, the students change, newer,better stuff becomes available, so why do we hang on to it?

There are many reasons we hang on to old curriculum.  Most often it is because we have another coming along (or are hoping for more to come along).  Other reasons can be for nostaligic reasons, passing it on to your children to use with their children (yeah, right!), or because we just have a hard time parting with "stuff" in general.  That last one can be hard for me.  I have "stuff" all over the house that has been hanging around waiting for me to do something with it.  I have been trying to let go of it, but it is difficult.

I contend that most of the school curriculum hanging around can be sold to help pay for the things you need for next year.  Sure, some of the items are worth hanging on to, but if you have more than a few years between kids - - like I do - - then perhaps it is worth passing on some of these items.  Here are a few reasons:

1.  If there are more than 2 - 3 years between children, it is best to sell off older curriculum now.  It is worth more now than it will be later when the company decides to bring out a newer edition. 

2.  Space = Money - - the space that is taken up by old curriculum can be better utilized. 

3.  You will feel better letting go of "stuff" and knowing someone else will be putting it to good use.

4.  While you might really love a curriculum, it may not fit the next one coming along, and you can always repurchase it if needed.   Remember by then a newer and better edition maybe out.

5.  You can use the money gained to help offset costs on next years "stuff."  Just think of all the items you can sell off to help pay for next year's books!  It's almost like found money.  Sure, most of the items will go at far less than what you purchased them for, but if you buy some of the items you need used, it will greatly reduce your costs. 

So what should we keep?  Classics - - time tested books that withstand generations.  Here are some that will stay on my bookshelves, not just for the kids to enjoy, but for me and my grandchildren, too:

1.  Ann Comstock's Handbook of Nature Study
2.  Burgess' Bird Book for Children
3.  Adventures in Grammar Land (Nesbit)
4.  Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare (E. Nesbit)
5.  Classic novels - - Little Women, The Little House Series, etc.
6.  Classic picture books (okay - - Daniel is two and so these are appropriate to him) - Blueberries for Sal, Time of Wonder, Corderoy, Tikki Tikki Tembo, Caps for Sale, etc.  You know the  ones that beg to be read over and over again.
7.  History stories - the D'Aulaire books - Abraham Lincoln, Greek Myths, etc;
8.  Saint books - The Vision series, some of the TAN books
9.  Catholic Treasure box books (okay, I will be saving these for the Grandkids, too!)
10.  Holling C. Holling books (great classic science and geography stories)

I am sure there are more to add to the list, but notice what is not on there.  I will not be saving textbooks (unless I will be using them within a year or two).

So, what are you waiting for . . .

God Bless,

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