Homeschool Curriculum Fairs – 7 Simple Steps on How to Get the Most Out of Them

Homeschool Curriculum Fairs can be invigorating to some and overwhelming to others. They are a great way to network with other homeschoolers, gain information about new homeschool methods, browse a wide variety of curriculum and resources, and much more. Here are some tips you can use to help you get the most out of any curriculum fair you attend:

1. Make a list of what you are looking for in curriculum, what you want to gain from the conference, and what you plan on spending. If you stay focused and within your budget, you will feel much better about your time there when you get home. Some people just go to listen to the speakers and don’t even look in the vendor hall. Whatever you want out of the conference is right for you.

2. Look over the schedule before the conference if possible. Prioritize what speakers you want to hear and plan accordingly.

3. Consider seriously whether you want to take your children with you. Younger children are often welcome but they might not allow you to get the most out of the conference. Some conferences have programs for teens that help them in their studies, allow them to network with other homeschoolers, and help them understand that there are many other students out there that are also being homeschooled.

4. If you’re not ready to purchase anything, you can always pick up catalogs and do your shopping at home. Some programs even allow you to get a sample of curriculum sent in a packet to your home for you to browse at your own pace.

5. Take advantage of tapes for sale for the speakers you wanted to hear but didn’t get to or those that you want to hear again. Some conferences give discounts if you purchase a whole set.

6. Decide not to purchase anything until you walk away from the booth and walk around for a given amount of time (1/2 hour or more). This will help you with impulse buying. Most vendors will hold books for you until you come back.

7. Remember you are there to gain knowledge and possibly purchase books that will be best for your family. If you have decided ahead of time what you want out of the conference, you will be less likely swayed by someone else who doesn’t know your family as well as you do.

The key to any homeschool conference or fair is to stay focused. Much time and effort is spent planning a homeschool conference and many vendors spend a great deal of time preparing for the conference too. Don’t let the amount of information overwhelm you. Realize that all the information is not necessarily meant for you. There are many types of homeschoolers. Conferences try to cater to all of them. Take what you need and leave the rest there!