Cost - Concerns, Priorities

Posts: 334
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:59 am

Re: New to MFW - need help figuring out exactly what to order.

Unread post by 4Truth »

I'm doing ECC with an 8th grader, 5th grader, and K/1st grader. Let me think about this overnight and I'll come back with a reply tomorrow. $700 is a LOT of money. As Julie mentioned, most of this stuff will become part of your permanent library, and you'll likely do ECC again with the youngest sometime in the future. So in light of the long term investment, $700 isn't much at all. But all at once... yeah. {choke}
Donna, with two MFW graduates and the "baby" in 11th grade! %| Using MFW since 2004.

Re: New to MFW - need help figuring out exactly what to order.

Unread post by cbollin »

In the years of doing MFW, I really think they go a good job of putting together what you need and you use it all. I like your line of thinking : I don't want to not order and find out I need it and then have to wait.

remember too.. it covers everything. ECC is not just a Bible and geography program. So, even if you get everything you need up front at one time, it's covering all subjects for 3 kids. That's not bad. I'm still ultra sensitive to spending anything right now. My husband was without a job for several months this year. God provided through that but it meant that we are moving to a new state and trying to sell a house and just bought one. so.. I'm sensitive to spending. But yeah, you will find that you end up needing it.

You need everything in the basic package of ECC. Julie said all of that really well. There are 2 books that are scheduled for beginning of the year. But you need them. One of them, Maps and Globes, can be a reference book if kids need a little more processing time or to look back. God Speaks Numanngang - scheduled for short term use, but I'd use it again when studying Cam Townsend and then again when in Oceania. It's one of those treasures for enjoying as a family to learn about Bible translation and going into the world. And yeah, you will need one extra set of student sheets. Those are good quality, consumable, some are color print. Includes the geography game. So, yeah, one set comes with and you'll need one extra set.

You may not need everything from 1st grade deluxe. That might be worth some out loud discussion (I'd want the math items, art appreciation). hmm.... but if it costs more to just buy parts and not the package, then that wouldn't make sense. Maybe talking about what to not get from 1st grade deluxe could be helpful. ??

deluxe in ECC: I'm hesitant to say to piece meal together from the deluxe package, because there is savings built into that. So if you leave out something like Great Animal Search - it might not save you money overall. And your 1st grader will like it and maybe the 5th grader. You'll want the read alouds (missionary biographies and Kingdom Tales), you'll need a globe, the origami is fun. You won't use the missionary biographies all at once, but I'm not sure you'd save in the long run if you bought one at a time.

If you need to cut back on some of it:
on the 7th/8th grader package: if you want to, your child can use the library World Book (print) instead of a their own computer copy. that might save a few dollars. we preferred having the computer version. My daughter last year also used internet research for things.

For the Progeny Press, 7th grade language, you need the guides. You might be able to get the books at the library or other borrow methods.

and remember too, lots of the older stuff (math, science, even the PP guides) can be re-used with next kid.
Posts: 334
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:59 am

Re: New to MFW - need help figuring out exactly what to orde

Unread post by 4Truth »

cbollin wrote:so.. I'm sensitive to spending. But yeah, you will find that you end up needing it.
This is the thing. I don't think I've ever bought a full package from MFW because either a) I was trying to save money and knew I could get some of the items from the library, or b) I already owned some of the items in the package. You have to do the math and decide whether you'd really save money by piecing it together, given the discount on the full package price that MFW offers. I've come back *several* times and had to order individual items because I thought I could get away without them in the first place.

Now, if you just can't cough up $700 at one time (BTDT, too), then you may have to do that anyway. Buy just what you need to get started, and then buy the rest later. But then you have additional shipping to pay, too. It's a trade-off.

It really is more effective in the long term to buy the full package up front. I say this having tried it the other way several times over the years.

Now, as to specifics... what can you *really* save money on and not find that you *have* to have later? (Keep in mind I have approximately the same ages as you, and we're doing ECC right now, too. Also doing K, will be starting 1st grade in the fall.)

For ECC, you don't need:

The Inflatable Globe if you already have a globe. But you will need a globe. I already had the inflatable one from MFW but had forgotten about it, went out and bought a globe, then was reminded that I have the inflatable. Duh. Someone here said that they use wipe-off markers to mark up their inflatable globe as they "travel" around the world. Great idea!

The Origami book. We haven't used this yet (only on week 4), but we will and I know the girls will really enjoy it.

The Great Animal Search, but we like that book, too. ;)

The Complete Book of Animals. This book is scheduled, but it's optional. My 6yo can't read it for herself yet, so someone has to "do" it with her and we don't always get to it. So this book will depend completely on what you think your 1st grader will want. My 6yo likes having some of her "own" books and does as much age-appropriate notebooking from ECC as she's able (coloring the John 3:16 pages, coloring some of the maps, etc.) She likes learning about animals from her "own" book, though.

God Speaks Numanggang and Maps and Globes are only used during the first two weeks, but you need them. Numanggang really touched oldest dd's heart and she immediately wanted to find a way that she could help. Maps and Globes is used almost daily during the first two weeks, so if you don't buy it, you'll need it from the library for at least two weeks.

That's it, really. Everything else is used pretty regularly, either for several weeks or throughout the whole year. By the time you remove just those few items from your cart, I doubt you'll have saved any money given the full package discount price that you'd pay by just buying that. I know it seems like a lot, but MFW has done a great job of utilizing only things that you actually do need. They don't throw in stuff "just because", to make it look "bigger and better" or something just because there's more "stuff". If that makes any sense.

You DO need the 7th/8th grade supplement package for oldest.

OH, on the "one per child" items... You really do need "one per child" everyplace where it says so except the World Geography book. That can be photocopied as needed, if you want to take the time to do that. And your 1st grader wouldn't need that book anyway, because it's for research assignments for older students. My 5th grader is doing them; your 5th grader may or may not. A year ago, I wouldn't have had this child do them, but a year later, she's ready.

I got the "one per child" items on everything else for the 6yo, too.

Agreeing with whoever said that you don't need the Deluxe items for the 1st grader. Except if you don't use the Complete Book of Math, you might want to get something else to replace that. I like it because it's simple, uncluttered, and not very time consuming. You'd probably want the science books, too. Sometimes my 6yo participates in ECC science (nature walks and experiments), and sometimes not (Ecosystems book, Living World book). I like to do at least one of the science projects from the K program with her each week, and will likely do the same with 1st grade.

You might could add some of the other items from the Deluxe package to your Christmas list, though. ;)
Last edited by 4Truth on Sat Aug 01, 2009 12:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Donna, with two MFW graduates and the "baby" in 11th grade! %| Using MFW since 2004.
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:27 pm

Re: New to MFW - need help figuring out exactly what to order.

Unread post by ♥Bev♥ »

Wow!!! You guys are such a great help!!! Thank you so~~o much. I'm so excited! Dh and I went on a little mini-vacation for our anniversary this weekend and had time to talk about things in detail. He and I are both thrilled with the concept of MFW, and he's even anxious for me to get it ordered and get started. Yay! Thanks so much for all the help - everyone!

Thanks, again!!!
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 28, 2009 3:18 pm

Re: Ever feel guilty buying brand new curriculum?

Unread post by rom815mom »

For those that can piece their curriculum together, have a complete curriculum AND save money, more power to them! I, honestly, am not that talented. I NEED to buy MFW to keep my sanity. So for me, I have to just accept that I need that kind of help and structure. For me, it's not about saving money or anything of the sort, I just am not creative, nor structured and I am OKAY with that. I can do it, I can but it takes me heeps and heeps of time that drain me and wear me out and make me cranky. I am just not wired like that. I am comfortable knowing my limits and thankful that MFW can help me with that need.
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 3:32 pm
Location: Alaska

Re: Ever feel guilty buying brand new curriculum?

Unread post by bunnytracks »

no I dont feel guilty either. I am very careful with our spending and make sure I save a little all year so that I can afford new curr. Plus I have 5 children that will use whatever I buy when they get older. When you break it down it really doesn't cost much to by new when you know you will use it again.

The only way I would feel guilty buying new is if I had to go into debt to buy it. I personally feel that the Lord would not be happy if I did that.
Proud wife 14 years to my Air Force man.
Homeschooling mom of 5 (4 boys and 1 girl)
I have used MFW ADV, ECC, and K
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:30 pm

? about CTG books

Unread post by sojen »

rawbanana wrote:hi ladies, are there any book in the CTG basic package that you feel could be optional? i know when I got the ECC set there were a couple books that I thought we didn't really need (God speaks Numanggang and the Geography A-Z, maps and globes). I think I am going to buy this piece by piece...thanks!!

If you need to buy books in the order you use them:

All year:
Victor Journey Through the Bible
Streams of Civilization, Volume 1
Ancient World
Celebrating Biblical Feasts
Genesis for Kids
English from the Roots Up

1st half of the year:
Ancient Egypt
You could skip Dinosaurs of Eden. I think it was only scheduled a few days at the start of the year.

2nd half of the year:
Aesop's fables for Children (with CD)
The Trojan Horse
The Children's Homer
Archimedes and the Door of Science
Jen in GA
mom to dd 11, dd 8, and ds 5
traveling through the medieval world with RTR.
Slowly starting kindergarten with my little guy.
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Re: ? about CTG books

Unread post by Kelly1730 »

Hi Anna,
A couple of the books might be at your library so I'd check there first.

Also, I know we all have our favorites but we really got a lot out of Dinosaurs of Eden so even though it's only used in the beginning of the year, I would get it if I could.
Mom to 6
Mimi to 8
MFW K, MFW 1st, Adventures, ECC, CTG, RTR ,EXP-1850, 1850-MOD, Ancient History and Lit 2016-17
Posts: 123
Joined: Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:33 pm
Location: South Carolina

Re: ? about CTG books

Unread post by baileymom »

*Just don't miss out on Victor...we still use that almost daily 3 yrs later!
Kathi - graduated 1, homeschooling 6, preschooling 2, growing 1
Julie in MN
Posts: 2906
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: ? about CTG books

Unread post by Julie in MN »

Since the books you could have skipped in ECC aren't books that "I" would skip in ECC (except maybe A-Z if I had older kids & used another source for geography terms), it probably means we are each going to be unique in these kinds of decisions.

The first thing to remember is that the package price saves you $$$. I run into the situation a lot where I have several books (I have the same great taste as Marie Hazell, eh?!) but it doesn't save me money to buy pieces, so I just sell the extras that I had.

Anyways, if I really needed to spend less, here are some thoughts on the basic package, and maybe combined with the other responses, you can figure something out:

I think you need these:
* Teacher's Manual, Second Edition
* Student Sheets (purchase one per student)

I think you will really want these:
* Victor Journey Through the Bible
* Celebrating Biblical Feasts
* Pyramids
* Archimedes and the Door of Science

These depend on the family:
* Genesis for Kids (a great source of experiment fun at my house)
* Streams of Civilization, Volume 1 (an important book at my house)
* The Children's Homer (a good experience for my ds's education, a step up in literature)

On these, you *might* have similar books at home? (But they definitely are a fun way to learn more facts!)
* Ancient World
* Ancient Egypt
* Aesop's fables for Children (with CD)
* The Trojan Horse
* Dinosaurs of Eden

This used to be "deluxe" and optional, so I suppose you could skip or start in RTR?
* English from the Roots Up

Deluxe is always optional:
* Art (this was a part of our history studies at our house)
* Music (I was so glad for this, and reused it in EX1850)
* Read-alouds (precious, could be read at any time but a nice balance to all that ancient history)
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
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Re: ? about CTG books

Unread post by annaz »

I had a few of the books for ECC before purchasing it and I still couldn't beat the price between my prime membership with Amazon, Amazon's 4 for 3 deal and what I already owned. MFW has fantastic pricing through their package price.
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:35 am

Packages vs Individual Items

Unread post by romans8x28 »

our_arrows wrote:Are the packages significantly cheaper than buying items individually from MFW?

I'm looking to purchase ECC but we own many of the books. I don't really want duplicates but if buying items individually will cost more I will go with the package.
You'll just have to add it up and see. Before we bought Adventures, we owned the two Little House books and the Discover's Bible. I'm a spreadsheet nerd, so I made a list of the items with prices from MFW and Amazon, with and without the different package options.

I ended up getting MFW's Deluxe package because for only a couple dollars more we got duplicates of all three books. I can sell/give away the two LH ones and we're keeping the extra Bible so we can have a nice one for school use and one she can use for personal use/taking to church.

I've got a friend who came into MFW after having already graduated some of her homeschoolers, so she was always best off picking and choosing the MFW items she needed because she already owned so much of the packages.
Rhonda is teaching:
Girl - 9, Boy - 7, Girl - 2, Baby in September!

2011-2012 - K-1st Ed.
2012-2013 - First-1st Ed.
2013-2014 - Adventures-2nd Ed., K-2nd Ed.
2014-2015 - ECC-2nd Ed., ECC & First-2nd Ed.
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Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 10:01 pm

Re: Packages vs Individual Items

Unread post by MelissaB »

I have the same experience. Unless you have a large number of the books needed, my experience is that it's better, financially, to purchase the entire package, and sell what we don't need at a used curriculum sale.

Also, I don't have to worry about having a different version than the curriculum needs.
Melissa B. (Arkansas)
Girls ages 16 & 13
Completed K, 1st, and Investigate {ECC; CTG; RTR; Expl.-1850; and 1850-Mod. Times}
"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,.." Titus 2:4
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Re: Packages vs Individual Items

Unread post by our_arrows »

Thank you both for your input! I wasn't sure if they gave an overall discount on their packages vs individual prices of items. I figured they probably did but thought I would check.
Mom to dd10, dd8, dd5, dd3.5, ds (stillborn), dd (stillborn), rainbow dd 1/5/13!
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Joined: Tue Oct 05, 2010 1:37 am

Re: Packages vs Individual Items

Unread post by asheslawson »

romans8x28 wrote:You'll just have to add it up and see........I'm a spreadsheet nerd, so I made a list of the items with prices from MFW and Amazon, with and without the different package options. I ended up getting MFW's Deluxe package because for only a couple dollars more we got duplicates of all three books.
I did the same thing - I just added it up & checked some sites, especially Amazon &

In the end it was better to buy the deluxe pkg & than piece together - but I didn't have most of the books - only a few. Either way - the books that I received as duplicates sold fast - especially since I kept the used ones & sold the new ones so they were in mint condition.
"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him" Colossians 2:6
dd-28, ds-25, ds-24, ds-22, ds-14, dd-10, student 13, granddaughter 3
MFW K, 1st, ECC, CTG, RTR, EX1850, 1850-MOD

price changes

Unread post by MFW-Lucy »

hsm wrote: I am holding off on CtG because I want to purchase it with the [science] revisions and I am willing to pay the higher price on it. My question is do other subjects generally increase in price? For example, math, science, progeny press, language arts, etc.... Thanks for your help!
Dear Lori,

Each year we work with our vendors to try to get the best prices for all of our books in order to keep prices as low as possible. We are not able to share with you what those prices will be yet since we are still working with our vendors on 2014 prices. Some years prices have fallen and others they have risen based on the cost we were able to set with the vendor. The cost in these areas is usually a small increase or decrease.

Hope that helps as you are trying to decide about ordering now or later.
hsm wrote:Thank you Lucy!
Posts: 146
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:09 pm

Re: price changes

Unread post by hsm »

Thank you Lucy!
K/ECC, CtG/Learning God's Story
dd-12, dd-9, ds-6
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