The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

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The Home School Source Review by Karen Houston


The Nolte family has brought to you the Home School Source, an educational lending library of resources for your homeschool family from their family - Paul, JoAnn, Joshua, Hannah, Michael, and Seth. They also have a very special miracle to share from the Lord; you just have to check out their web site newsletter for their personal testimony!

Mary Kay Cosmetics' is not the only place to let us "try before we buy" - wouldn't it be great for homeschoolers to figure out how to avoid that $600 (more or less) spent on curriculum alone per child each year? Wouldn't it be great to be able to spend that amount on our children directly, rather than just on the books they're using each year? Wouldn't it save time to have some other homeschool parents you trust check all this stuff out, just so you know the content is Christian rather than Darwin evolutionist or whatever in orientation (We, just for example, recently received a very inviting and innocent-appearing children's magazine the other day in the mail, and going through the kids' activities, my husband noticed a four-page section in the very back of the magazine heavily promoting Buddhism!)? How about the gas just driving to the homeschool supply stores, checking everything out each successive year?

And the time? How much time are we losing?

How about the books you have left over from last year - Are you donating those to Goodwill or somewhere similar? Will many people frequenting thrift stores get good use out of them? Are there any families with kids precisely a year younger than yours in your homeschool group? Are they using the identical workbooks or unit studies? How much time and gas are you willing to part with in exchange for taking last year's curricula to the donation site? How much does that cost each of us?

Would it be great to save on videos (gee, how much do we spend on THOSE every year to enhance our children's learning experience!), and to know that the content of the videos is family-friendly rather than full of garbage? Just four videos alone cost us $75 a year, and you know we get more than that, or all the living rooms I've seen wouldn't be so full of them! If we weren't spending that, homeschool parents wouldn't be so upset when online video clubs mistakenly make portions of some credit card numbers available to hackers online!

When we actually purchase our video and book educational resources, wouldn't it be a welcome change to get a 10-30 percent discount on something without having to wait until the April discount comes around to finally order it, or without having to ferret out that tiny, often times missing parent educator card? Would it be a good idea to have a "wish list" to note our next choices, so we don't have to research them all over again? How about ordering something online or from a used book store, then discovering it's the 1991 edition and we can't use it with the 1999 teacher's manual we already purchased, because the problems and answers have been changed? This is particularly frustrating to anyone who deals with pain in their arms, like I have. It really annoys me - no, it downright irritates me to waste this kind of effort.

If you're like us at our homeschool, and your support group has been discussing these issues important to the hearts of all parents in the homeschooling community, guess what?

You can have all these services for around $50 per year, not including discounts offered on what you're already buying anyway. You can even get a homeschool group discount, if your group researches what is available and agrees they'd like to participate. There are a whole page full of homeschool groups already signed on (This gives you an extra couple of months or so to check each item out, in addition to your discount. And who wouldn't save hundreds of dollars to spend doing activities with your children? Ohhh, I hear you: shipping costs! How about an average of 2.50 each way?)! To tell you the truth, I resent sounding like an ad for anything, but I've run out of questions. I can't see anything negative about it, can you?

The lending library has over 1,700 videos, so get your homeschool support group or resource center together, and let's get ourselves some discounts from The Home School Source while we enjoy homeschooling those kids!

-- Product review by: Karen Houston, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine