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Thread: minimum number of books needed for year 3

  1. #1
    I am trying to decide if I want to take the plunge and do year 3 with 2 rhetoric students next school year. We dabbled in year 2 by working through much of unit 4 at the end of the school year.

    The major factor holding me up is the cost and I'm wondering how to reduce the number of books. When I go to the bookshelf and see costs upwards of $800 I am greatly intimidated. I realize there are probably a number of books that we could skip but I don't know which ones those would be.

    Before I actually order year 3 I'm wondering if some of you who've been through this year already could share your experiences.

    I would plan to skip church history and government as I have my own resources for those subjects. So what I'm most interested in is the history and literature selections.

    What did you skip? What is not to be skipped? How have others reduced costs without missing out on too much? How have you made TOG fit into your budgets?

    Thanks much,
    Linda in IL

  2. #2
    Some Rhetoric books are found in their entirety for free on the internet. Some venders like Amazon offer used editions or '4 for 3' specials if the price is under $10. Additionally, if you have other homeschool friends of similar interests, you may develop a lending system. I do this with friends. Of course, the local library will have the classical literature titles.

    Having said all of that, I am a book buyer, and TOG's choices are well selected.

    If you are removing some subjects, I am sure that you can par down the list. There also might be ways to cut other budget categories in order to free up book funds.

    best wishes.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    I think what you buy and what you skip depends on your child and their college goals.

    A child who wants to go a rigorous academic sort of college in a degree program in the humanities would want to do as much as possible of the toughest material. While a child that wanted to be a molecular biologist might want to skim the surface and spend more time on math and science.

    In some of the year plans there are tips on cutting the literature down to size. For instance in Year Two there are three lower levels (I think) given as opposed to doing all the literature. These plans won't necessarily cut the number of books since Tapestry does rely on the Norton Anthology in that year.

    Beyond that it is generally suggested that you buy books used for a lengthy period of time and substitute those that are used only for a few weeks. In the case of literature you can find inexpensive used copies of many of the works Tapestry uses at local used bookstores.

    You might also consider buying your books by unit so that you can spread the amount over the year. This will also give you time to haunt your local used sources and pick up more books (but maybe I just like doing that).

    Finally, consider the cost of a private school. In my area there is a very fine Christian classical school. I think high school tuition would run at least $6,000 to $8,000. I know that Marcia has said she has tried to duplicate her own high school experience at an even more selective school which probably runs at least five digits and that's per student! Yikes! So the overall cost is very low when compared to that.

  4. #4
    Vice President
    Lampstand Press

    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Kingsport, TN
    A big way to save, if you are buying for multiple levels, is to buy one book on a given topic. For instance, there is no need to buy three books (LG, UG, and D) about William Carey. If you don't mind the kids sharing books, just buy either the UG or D one and read it aloud to the LG student.

    Also, if you can't figure out how to cut down your order, if you are ordering from Bookshelf Central, feel free to give me a call and I'm glad to help you figure ways to cut down on titles.

    Dana C. in TN
    Vice President
    Lampstand Press

    "Let my teaching fall like rain and my words descend like dew,
    like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants.
    I will proclaim the name of the Lord. Oh, praise the greatness of our God!"
    Deut. 32:2-4

  5. #5
    We're starting year 3 after completing yrs. 1&2 in the grammar level and we've used our public library system for nearly all of the books. In MN at least, our public system accesses the universities and seminaries as well as all of the public libraries within the state. Occasionally we've purchased books for TOG because they would be used for several weeks or because we loved the book so much. Per year we've spent less than $100 on books for TOG, which has made this curriculum very affordable for us.

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