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10 Used Curriculum Sale Tips For Your Best Experience

By May 24, 2023No Comments

Enjoy these used curriculum sale tips for the big day on June 8!

Prepare for parking challenges.

The earlier you come to the sale, the better. Typically a long line forms outside the doors before 6:15 p.m. (opening time). Therefore, make sure you’re in the area and ready to wait!

Bonus tip for homeschool newbies: Come to our free “how to homeschool” workshop at 5 p.m. and get a premium parking spot then!

Other ideas: try to go with a friend or carpool with other families. It’s also handy to check a traffic website like, where you can see all the construction work around the KC metro and whether it affects your route.

Remember cash is (usually) king.

Bring plenty of change and small bills for your purchases. This is especially true for sellers. You don’t want to be wiped out by another $20 note!

Some sellers allow for options like Venmo, PayPal, Facebook Pay, and credit cards. However, MPE does not police any of these payment options and leaves all transactions up to the discretion of both sellers and buyers.

Another alternative is to bring your checkbook, but cash is usually your best and safest bet.

Shop using the right mindset.

Some newbies to homeschooling may assume they need to find only “Book A” or “Curriculum Set B” at the sale to make it worth their while. But that’s not usually how homeschool curriculum works!

(See this blog post about knowing when you need to change your current homeschool curriculum.)

A better mindset is to come to the sale expecting a “buffet-style” experience rather than a “made-to-order” one. One mom compared it to a farmers’ market for homeschoolers, only this is curriculum, not produce!

Instead of thinking you only need a specific label or item, come ready to browse and sample a whole range of methods or “flavors” to learning.

Based on our personal experience, we expect the sale will introduce you to educational games, manipulatives, crafts, and so much more. However, it can greatly enrich your homeschool in ways you may not have even considered beforehand.

Come with the right equipment.

Of all used curriculum sale tips, this one is probably worth gold to you. Come armed with a small and narrow rolling cart or even small suitcase to cart around your purchases!

Even if you don’t plan on buying a lot of stuff, we strongly recommend following the example of veterans who bring something along anyway (even if they don’t fill it to bursting). Your neck, back and feet will thank you.

Prepare for tight spaces.

This year we are requesting that sellers bring books only or items that can be placed on their table (NO large items due to limited space). You can bring crates and boxes to put on the floor or under your table if necessary, but we request no bookshelves.

Sellers are responsible to stay with their items and handle their own sales.

If you’re a buyer, travel as lightly as you can! Leave everything you don’t need in your car or at home.

If you bring rolling carts, make sure they’re small and narrow.

Watch the clock.

Take note of the sale’s start and end times (6:15-8 p.m.), and make the best use of the time you have.

For sellers, setup begins at 5 p.m. Cleanup begins at 8 p.m. and ends at 9 p.m. All these times are strictly enforced.

Drop by the MPE table.

This year MPE will have its own table of curriculum to sell. Funds from the sale of these items will go back to support our organization, which supports the homeschool community through special events, discounts and activities all year long!

Let children participate for maximum enjoyment.

If your children are old enough and you want to bring them with you, consider giving them a small amount of money to spend on whatever toys they find there.

They’ll learn valuable bargaining skills, using math skills and interacting socially with different age groups – all in one easy place!

Look for the freebies table.

We always have a table of free items at the used curriculum sale. Families will have donated resources and materials there that can go to any homeschool.

If you’re a buyer, feel free to chat with sellers.

Homeschoolers keep telling us how much they love coming to this event – not only for the sale, but also for the help and encouragement they receive!

We have suggested that sellers list their books and items in alphabetical order for buyers to review. If the list is in alphabetical order, the buyer can quickly see whether the seller has the curriculum they need.

Many of our sellers are longtime homeschool veterans with amazing insights. Take advantage of their experience, as it can help you make better purchases.

BONUS TIP for 2023: Buy a meal in advance and save!

While both the homeschool workshop and used curriculum sale events are free, we’ve negotiated a special deal on dinners with the church’s Kindness Kitchen – warm, fresh, boxed meals at incredible prices, especially for homeschool families!

These meals are lovingly created from scratch by the amazing Greg & Mary Reynolds, who have a combined 35 years of private catering experience. (They’re also retired homeschool parents!) Each meal will contain two cream cheese enchiladas, rice, and beans, all warm and made on-site that evening. 

Dinner meals will be served in the church’s fellowship hall.

Please order your meals in advance by May 25, using the form on this page, so we know how many meals to prep. We cannot guarantee that there will be enough meals if you come and order on-site.

We have updated this blog post, originally published in June 2015, for timeliness and detail.

Shanxi Omoniyi

Shanxi Omoniyi (@ShanxiO on Twitter) is MPE's online content director. A homeschool alumna, Shanxi graduated from the University of Kansas with degrees in journalism and English. Her company, Wordspire Media, helps businesses and nonprofits share their stories through content marketing, social media management, and email marketing.

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