One of the best aspects of Homeschooling (in my opinion) is the freedom to explore parts of sciences, arts, literature, or topics that traditional public or private schooling may not allow curriculum time or resources for. While much of our curriculum I have direct experience with or around, there are some areas that I want my child to be versed in that I personally do not have experience with, nor am I proficient. When this happens, I love to utilize kits!
Just a note, while I will give ideas as to how to save on kits as well as additional sources of where to purchase kits, the majority of links in this post are affiliate links to the products on Amazon if you choose to purchase from them, a small percentage of your order will help me fund and keep my blog up and running. As always, thank you for your support.
How We Decided To Grow Peanuts
A kit can be any tool that offers a unit study approach (often it comes in an all-in-one set-up) to a topic or study area that is planned out for you. For example, I do not have a green thumb, nor do I pretend to. The plants that survived in my yard are not because of me, but in spite of me. I have a few house plants that have sustained the hardship of our home mostly due to a lot of YouTube videos and Pinterest articles on how to keep them from dying. That said, I want my kids to have the experience of growing something from seed, learning about how seeds germinate, how they grow, the life cycle of a plant, and in a contained environment that gives me clear instructions to not mess it up- this is a perfect situation for a kit!
The kit I found was on sale at JoAnn’s Fabrics and Crafts this past spring. (We will talk more about where to find kits and how to find budget friendly options later on in this post)
We decided to use this Peanut kit to go through the stages of planting, germinating, and growing our own Peanuts in our Homeschool room. This kit was so easy to assemble, set up, and looks beautiful in our school room window. I love that it included the greenhouse as part of the kit!
Needle Felting Kits
What are some other kits we have used in the past? Some of my favorites were art and craft kits for natural crafts. They’re so easy to do, and often more cost effective in a kit. One of my favorites were this felting kit which I purchased on Amazon.
There are a plethora of free tutorials on how to needle felt on YouTube, Pinterest, and a load of books available with free patterns at our local library. At the time I made some seasonal fairies, and I was really pleased with how they turned out! Felting is a perfect example of where a kit is beneficial. For a low price, I had a multitude of colors to choose from, all the tools I could possibly want, plus a storage case.
Beeswax Candle Kits
Another kit we have thoroughly enjoyed are beeswax candle kits. I’ve purchased them from a few shops, and honestly the price on Amazon can’t be beat (unless you’re placing a large enough order to negate the shipping cost other places). The one we used is here.
While the price seems steep at $40 for this kit, we tend to make taper candles to use in a candle stick and we use a half sheet size to do so. At $40 for 20 (1/2 sheet sized) candles, it ends up being $2 a handrolled beeswax candle, which if you use primarily beeswax, you know that’s a steal. They also have gone beyond a school day project and have become one of my favorite gifts to give for winter holidays, housewarmings, mothers day, anniversarys, etc. At 2 years old my child was fully able to help me roll a candle, and it was great sensory play as well since the beeswax warms in your hand, shares a soft sweet scent, and it’s a straightforward product that you can integrate in to daily rhythms. I highly recommend this kit.
How To Save On Kits
My first suggestion always is to keep your eyes open when you’re shopping yard sales, thrift shops, clearance sections at grocery stores, craft stores, etc. I’ve found some beautiful wood beading kits at Goodwill for $2.99 or this Peanut Kit for under retail at JoAnns at an end of season clearance event. I try to keep them together in a rubbermaid tote so it’s easy for me to see what we have when planning school projects and not having to buy more than we already have. That said, if you’re looking for inspiration for kits, there are sites like A Child’s Dream or Bella Luna Toys that offer beautiful kits with high quality materials which are fantastic if your budget allows. There are times though when I’m looking at a kit and realize after a little research that it would be less expensive for me to purchase the materials individually and get a better product (for example, most knitting and crochet kits). So, always do your own research when paying full price. I also tend to utilize Amazon when it comes to items like needle felting which I want an introductory kit that is cost effective without breaking the bank on higher quality materials since I don’t know if we are going to stick with it.
The good news is that kits are what you make them, they can become a cornerstone of your school day or they can be a fun treat during the holiday season.
Do you use kits in your schooling? What are your favorite kits that you’ve used? Let me know in the comments!