When we first started homeschooling during my oldest’s preschool years (he’s now entering 7th grade *gulp*), one of the first resources I ever found was The Homeschool Buyers Co-Op.
The Homeschool Buyers Co-op is a wonderful free homeschooling organization for both new and veteran homeschoolers. Co-op membership is free and confidential, and entitles homeschooling families to GroupBuy discounts on high-quality curriculum. We have taken advantage of their deals on programs like Explode the Code and Learning Ally. Since my oldest has dyslexia, the Learning Ally discounted membership was, by far, the best investment we made. I was excited to see it featured at the Co-op, because it is not usually a program with a lot of discounts. Explode the Code was wonderful when the kids were younger and just learning phonics.
We have seen some great group discounts on programing classes this last year and, while the time has not been quite right to use them in our homeschooling curriculum, we look forward to taking advantage of those deals. There is even a class that teaches how to build Minecraft mods. Needless to say, my boys are exceptionally excited about that since we use Minecraft Homeschool on a daily basis. I am also really excited to see what is in store for the LEGO Education group buy that is “in the pipeline” for later this year. We would love to get more involved with LEGO robotics and any type of discount would be fantastic!
The free homeschool ID cards that the Homeschool Buyers Co-op offers have also been something we have taken advantage of from the start of our homeschooling adventure. They allow us to get student discounts at bookstores and we carry them with us when we are out and about during the year just in case there is a place that offers student discounts. They are also good to have on hand if you live in a school district with a high truancy rate, so you can prove that your kids are actually homeschoolers. While you can order the cards professionally laminated for a fee, we print them out at home for free on card stock and then laminate them ourselves. You could also take them to an office supply store and have them laminated there if you choose to do so.
In addition to amazing deals, you will also find lots of free information, such as databases of free curriculum, field trips, and educational contests and scholarships. We also use Homeschool Planet which is produced and maintained by the same great folks at The Homeschool Buyers Co-op. You can read more about our favorite online homeschool planner here. It is exceptionally easy to use and makes it much easier for me to manage three different children’s lessons throughout the year.
If you are just getting started on your homeschooling journey or looking for a great new resource, I highly recommended checking out The Homeschool Buyers Co-Op. Click here for more information and to join for free! If nothing else, sign-up and print out your homeschool ID cards!