Finding affordable curricula can challenge even the most experienced homeschool veterans. How do you find the best place, in your local area or online, to buy cheap homeschool books?
We found several great answers to that question among our own homeschool community right here in Kansas City.
One homeschool mom wrote to say she’s used Abebooks.com to buy books for her history and science courses. Sellers don’t have to add shipping fees, which means they can usually charge prices that are comparable to, or better than, major retail outlets.
In her three years of experience, she’s been highly impressed with the quality and condition of the books, as well as prompt refunds from sellers if the books were not what she wanted.
2) Half Price Books.
Another popular favorite is Half Price Books, with locations in Kansas City, Olathe and Overland Park. You can also get a HPB Educator Discount as a homeschooler, so you can save 10 percent off throughout the year! See this page for more details.
Marketed as “the online bookstore with a soul,” this startup collects and sells books online with more than 8 million titles in stock. Not only that, but the site also donates books and funds literacy initiatives around the world.
No list would be complete without mentioning this retail giant! Homeschoolers regularly turn to Amazon for browsing and researching titles, even if they choose to buy elsewhere.
This website launched in 1994 as another online campus bookstore for students. They also offer movies, video games and ebooks.
6) Barnes & Noble.
Many may not be aware that Barnes & Noble offers sizable educator discounts that can be used for homeschoolers. When used correctly, you can save 20 percent off the publisher’s list price on all purchases for classroom use, and get up to 25 percent off the publisher’s list price during Educator Appreciation Days.
One enterprising mom researches books through her Goodreads account, since it gives her a handy list of places where they’re available, along with the best prices. (This is available only through the online version, not the app.)
8) Thrift stores.
Although you shouldn’t expect to find wonderfully extensive sets of homeschool curricula at thrift stores, they’re still a great place for many literary classics (which homeschoolers often use as textbooks!).
One mom writes, “I love www.bigwords.com because it searches all kinds of online used bookstores and compiles a list of where to find the best deals. I have really used it primarily for textbooks when I was in college and I saved a fortune, but I imagine it would work for other books too!”
10) Local homeschool Facebook groups.
Occasionally you’ll find classifieds, buy/sell and other Facebook homeschool groups selling new or gently used curriculum.
11) Our used curriculum sale every summer.
One of the biggest events of the year! Mark your calendars every spring to check for our used curriculum sale in June. It’s free for anyone who wants to browse the more than 60 tables of cheap homeschool books, curricula and other educational items.
This blog post was originally published in May 2015. We have updated it for timeliness and detail.
Any other places you recommend for cheap homeschool books? Let us know in the comments!
Homeschoolclassifieds.com has been a great resource for buying and selling cheap (usually used) curriculum. The cost of shipping is usually bundled into the price so you don’t have to do extra calculations. Not fancy, but easy to use.
If you have high school students who are taking college classes, Half.com and Amazon.com have helped me locate used textbooks for a fraction of the cost of new or bookstore prices. Both sites also have textbook rental options.
Thanks for the tips, Denise!