It’s Thanksgiving week and with that comes Black Friday Sales. It only happens once a year, and yet folks spend an entire year planning for it. While I’m not as ‘Black Friday Crazy’ as some folks, I do enjoy the sales which benefit our home and homeschool. I seldom spend our Black Friday Budget on Christmas items. My focus is more on items such as linens, kitchen/household needs, clothing, and homeschool supplies.
Funding the family homeschool can get quite expensive. But, with strategic planning and saving it can be done on a budget without skimping on the fun things. I love hands-on, creative learning tools which help fuel my children’s imagination; but they can quickly be put to the side for more traditional academic materials. Black Friday is one of my favorite times to pick up some fun additions to our homeschool on the cheap. I typically budget $100-$200 throughout the year just for purchasing educational items on Black Friday.
One of my favorite places to purchase educational toys from is Learning Resources. They have amazing educational toys, which if taken care of, can last a tremendously long time. I have some learning toys from them that I bought when my oldest was preschool age and he’s now about to graduate from high school! Trust me when I say, this place makes quality toys. But, I must share a disclaimer; I do NOT allow ‘free range play’ with our academic toys. Our homeschool toys are stored in bins/totes and my children are allowed to play with them under supervision. I usually have them sit at the kitchen table or in the living room where I am working to play, and then when they are done playing, the toys go back into their designated place. This system insures our homeschool toys can be enjoyed for many years to come and by all of our children coming up the ranks.
For as many years as I can remember, Learning Resource has had Black Friday sales. So, I am always on the lookout as to when their sales begin. This year they actually began a few days before Black Friday. What a major blessing, because now you and I can go ahead and get our orders in before the rush.
We are super big on budgeting, so my biggest suggestion is to plan ahead. I devise a savings plan at the first of every year just for our Black Friday/Cyber Monday expenditures. This probably won’t help some of you now, but perhaps in the future it will. This year I was trying to keep my Learning Resource budget to around $100. Seriously, I love all of their stuff and it’s so hard to narrow down my purchases, but this is what is in my cart this year.
- Counterpillar: item # LER 7722
- Color Fun Fruit Pie: item # LER 1473
- Jumbo Farm Counters: item # LER 7408
- New Sprouts Bake It: item # LER 9258-D
- New Sprouts Mix It: item # LER 9275
- Snap and Learn Matching Dinos: item # LER 6708
- New Sprouts Hot Cocoa Set: item # LER 9272
- Dive into Shapes! A “Sea” and Build Geometry Set: item # LER 1773
- In the Garden Critter Counters: item # LER 3381
Now, I will share that the kitchen toys may not seem educational, but my children all love to play with our kitchen toys. These are far superior in quality than any other brand, and I’ve tried many different brands. I do allow the children to have ‘free play’ with the kitchen toys, but they are kept in a specific location and picked up after each kitchen play time. They are always super excited to get some new additions to their kitchen/grocery/restaurant toys.
I look at educational toys as an investment in my children’s future. I’d rather my children be using their imagination than staring at a ‘device’. Don’t get me wrong, we do allow for tech learning, but we try to keep the focus more on hands-on, creative learning with quality educational toys. While my children may snarl a little at some of the academic learning resources I purchase, I’m always amazed at how much time they will spend ‘playing’ with them. It’s all about balance. And with that balance comes a healthy educational back ground that will springboard them into the future career God has set before them.
As a mama with a large family and a modest budget, I love a good deal and saving money. So if you’re in the market to add to your homeschool educational toys, I highly recommend Learning Resources. This week they have their Black Friday Sales in full swing. To get an additional 30% off your entire purchase, apply GIFT30 when you checkout. Don’t forget to check the clearance items and get even more of a discount!