UCS (aka The Used Curriculum Sale) or How to sell books to make money to buy more books!


The Used Curriculum Sale

How to sell books to make money to buy more books!

I recall seeing a saying the other day (yes, I know, seeing a saying sounds weird – I should have heard a saying, but it was posted online so I saw it rather than heard it.)  Anyway – the saying was this:

“There is no such thing as too many books, just too few bookcases.”

I am not sure who said this, so I am not sure who to attribute it to.  I do, however, wholeheartedly agree!  There is also such a thing as not enough space to put all of the bookcases.  So when you get to the point that there are books on all of your bookcases, books stacked in baskets in your bathrooms, books piled high on night stands, and books threatening to fall on your youngest child whenever they walk down the hall – then it is time to think about parting with some books.  The great part about this is the Used Curriculum Sale (or UCS) – you know how you feel when you see a new book and you just must have it – someone will look at your books like that and they will pay you money for them.  (Which you can then use to buy more books and a helmet for the smallest child so they don’t get hurt when the books land on their head.)

I am going to walk you through the steps for the HEAV UCS.  Why?  Because I am going to HEAV and I am taking other peoples books with me and this is not only good for you, but will also teach them how to enter their books.  🙂  See – we are all learning together – isn’t that nice.

Here we go:

Step 1 – Creating an Account and Logging In

How to Sell

  • You first must create an account – Even if you created an account last year, you need to create an account for this year.

create account


log in_new account

  • If you have not created your new account, now is the time to do so.  If you have already created your new account, then you can go ahead and login.
  • When you create your new account, you will be shown the terms of service.  The terms of service layout the rules for the sale (things that are considered Not Appropriate for Sale, Minimum prices, where to drop off items, payment, etc.)  Be sure to read this before clicking on “I Agree” or “I Don’t Agree” at the bottom of the window.
  • After you create your new account, you will need to wait for an activation email – this is usually a pretty quick thing.  If you try to login before your account it active, you will get a message like this

account not active and your computer will melt into a sad little heap of plastic, metal and smoke.  (Just kidding – well, about part of it anyway.)

  • After activating your account, you can login – Note: as you do this, the list of items that are not accepted is shown again.  While for some it may see like over kill, this really is an important thing to note.  The HEAV UCS deals with a HUGE number of items in a short period of time.  In order for that to work smoothly people do need to follow the rules.  Be sure to look over the list and make sure you are clear on what things you can and can’t sell (most of these are obvious things – such as R rated movies and outdated encyclopedias however HEAV also requests no college textbooks so just take a quick look and you will be all set.)
  • The first time you login you will see this message, after you have entered books, this is where your book list will appear.

entering books_1

  • Select the “click here” link in the main area, or the “Add new item” in the right hand menu box to begin entering items.

Step 2 – Entering books and items to sell

  • Selecting “click here” or “Add a new item” opens a new message box within the current window.  

entering books_2


Note: Not all of the categories are required, however be sure to fill out the ones that are in order to avoid an error.

Add New Item Message Box

Description (*Required): Here you add (as briefly as possible) the description of the book or item being sold, further down you will be able to indicate grade and category, so the best thing here is the title and subtitle is available.  Some people will indicate if the book has been used or not.  

Subject / Category (*Required): These are both drop down selection boxes - the second box will be active or not depending on your choice of category.  For example, if you select 1st grade, the subject box will become active and you can select Language, Math, Social Studies or Science.
Publisher: Here you can list the book publisher if desired - I generally only do this if it is a popular publisher such as Saxon, BJU, Scholastic, etc.

Year/Edition: This is optional

# of Items (*Required): If you are selling items together (such as several books of a series, or a textbook and workbook, indicate the total number here.  

Condition: This drop down selection allows you to choose a condition for you items.  Bear in mind that people will be looking at and flipping through your items, so if the outside looks new, but the inside is written all over your condition marker should reflect that.

Friday Price (*Required): The UCS is open on Friday and Saturday.  That is why you have a Friday Price and Saturday Price option.  People will spend a little more on Friday to get something they really need or want, on Saturday they will also spend money on things they may like or want to try.  A good rule of thumb is to choose your Friday price and then knock down your Saturday price by 1/3 to 1/2.

Saturday Price (*Required): See Friday Price

Donate: This check box indicates if you want to donate your books or if you want to come and collect the ones that didn't sell after the sale is over.  If you choose to donate your books, it is wise to lower the Saturday price by at least 1/2 if not more; after all, it is better to get something for them rather than nothing at all.

Add another: This little check box is a wonderful help.  If you are entering in more than one book at a sitting, then keep this box checked and after you hit the "Create" button, the box will clear and be ready for the next item.

Printing your Labels

Once all of your items have been entered and you have checked over your list to make sure you don’t have any corrections to make you will need to print your labels.  Clicking on the Print Labels link in the right-hand menu brings up a new tab (or possibly a new window, it may depend on your browser setup.)

This new window gives you options and instructions.  You can choose to print all of your labels, only those that haven’t yet been printed, certain labels, etc.

You will get TWO copies of each Label – this is important.  The reason you get two copies is so that you can place one copy on the outside of the book and one label on the inside (in case the outside label falls off).  It is amazing how many books end up on the “No Label Table” at the UCS – if your label falls off and you don’t have one secured on the inside, your book won’t be able to be sold.

HEAV asks that you use ONLY ONE strip of tape ACROSS the MIDDLE of the label.  The way I figure it, HEAV has been doing this convention for 30 years, if they recommend that I only put one strip of tape and I have an label on the inside and outside – I’m going with their recommendations.

So that was my brief “How To” on the UCS Barcoding system.  If you have other questions or if you want more details – Visit the “How to Sell” page on the HEAV website.

Thanks for taking the time to read through my little tutorial.  If you would like me to bring your books to convention, I only charge a modest fee.  🙂  Send me a note – we’ll chat.

Otherwise – See you in June!!  And don’t forget HEAV’s Bounty Of Blessings – 30 Days of Giveaways is going on through the end of April – don’t miss out on the last few days of goodies!!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask.




Return Address Labels – They’re not just for envelopes anymore!! brought to you by TCTGYRFC

The Return of the Return Address Label

return address labels

So you are going to convention!  (Notice I didn’t say you are thinking about going, you are wondering if you should go, you might be going – I just said you are going – consider this permission to go)

Anyway – now you have to start preparing – over the course of the next few days, weeks, hours (depending on how many minutes I can squeeze together at one time) I am going to be posting tips.  For those loyal readers who have been here all along, you will recognize quite a few things from the TCTGYRFC newsletter.  I “borrowed” (sometimes word for word) quite liberally from them.  But it’s OK – it’s my newsletter as the President, CEO, CFO, ROYGBIV, and Supreme Overall Queen of TCTGYRFC – I can do that!

(on a side note – for those who haven’t figured out the acronym – TCTGYRFC == The Committee To Get You Ready For Convention)

Return Address Labels and what to do with them

#1 – Use return address labels to save you time when filling out door prize entries.  To do this, you will want to print return address labels with your name, your homeschool name (if you want), your address, your phone number and your email address.  This way you can use these labels to place onto the little door prize entries at all (or most) of the tables.  This will save you over 3 hours in the vendor hall.  Want to see the math?  Check out my post: Filling out Door Prize Tickets.

#2 – Use return address labels to put your name in your homeschool books that you lend out.  The plus side here is two fold – One the person who borrowed your book knows that it is yours and can get it back to you and B if and when you go to sell the book you can take a blank return address label and cover over the one with your name one it.

#3 – Well, you know you can use these on your letters and such, right?

Anyway – stay tuned – next time we will talk about . . .

Wait for it . . .

Almost . . .

3 RING BINDERS!!!  Woo hoo!!

Have you ever used return address labels for convention?  Have you ever used them for anything else?  I would love to hear from you.

mcrooker – Homeschooler on the Edge

Another HEAV Family Registration Giveaway

Hello all – just a quick note to let you know that my friend Carol over at Lessons from the Homestead did a great interview with Joel Salatin today.


Joel Salatin is going to be a speaker at the 30th Annual HEAV Convention in Richmond this June 6th, 7th and 8th.  Carol is also offering a Free HEAV Family Registration for those who post and as questions about homeschooling on the homestead.  You can read the interview and comment for the giveaway at Carol’s post — Interview w/ Joel Salatin and HEAV Giveaway.

You can also go on over to the HEAV page to check out Joel Salatin’s workshops or to the Registration page to register for the convention.  Registration is now open for all!!! You must be logged in to register, but you should have recieved your username and password in an email from HEAV.  If you didn’t (or if it was sent to your spam filter and you accidentally deleted it) you can use the recovery link to retrieve it.  🙂

Early preregistration is $59/member

Regular Preregistration is $79/non-member

AND if that’s not enough (I sound like the late night shopping network — And that’s not all folks . . . )

HEAV’s Bounty of Blessings is going on right now too!

30 Years!

30 Giveaways!

30 Days in April!


Have a great day!

mcrooker – Homeschooler on the Edge


Homeschool Mom’s Retreat Weekend


It is Saturday night and I am sitting on the bottom bunk of a triple bunk-bed in a room full of other homeschool moms!  What a great weekend so far!

Where am I?  What am I doing?  🙂  I am so glad that you asked (and even if you didn’t ask – I am still going to tell you)

2013-04-13 07.47.08

I am attending Landry Academy’s Mom’s retreat!  What you haven’t heard of Landry Academy?  That’s ok – I hadn’t either until I found out about this retreat.

Landry Academy offers online classes, mission trips, summer camps, mom’s retreats (that’s where I am right now!) and 2-Day Lab Intensives.  Geared mainly towards the older kids, Landry does have a few things for the young ones too.  The Mom’s Retreat is a weekend away (although there are a few that do happen during the week), but it is time away from the hectic hustle and bustle of homeschooling to relax, refresh and LEARN SCIENCE.

While we have relaxed a little, there has been a lot of science going on.  Check out what we have done so far this weekend –

To start off with – we arrive on Friday evening – for dinner –

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The food has been wonderful – we have had Italian, Mexican, hamburgers, Salads, pancakes, Reese’s Ice Cream Bars, and Rice Krispie Treats.  I walked around on a beautiful Saturday morning, enjoying the fresh air, bird songs and God’s beautiful works.

2013-04-13 07.46.45I have met lots of great ladies!  Ladies from PA, NJ, MD, NY, NC, and RI.  All homeschool moms – all wonderful ladies.  I have spent time with friends from my co-op as well.

2013-04-14 10.44.06 2013-04-14 10.48.45 2013-04-13 09.22.29 2013-04-13 09.22.22And if that wasn’t enough, there is the SCIENCE!

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Do you know your blood type?

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Graphing blood glucose levels

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I even won a door prize!

2013-04-13 10.51.59Tomorrow (Sunday) we will be dissecting!  Good Night for now – I will save this post so I can add more pictures tomorrow.

Sunday 4-14-13

So I slept a lot better the second night than I did the first night.  We were still up early to pack up and head over for breakfast.  We were ready to start classes again at 8:45 – today was dissection day!  I am going to post the dissection pictures in a separate post for the sake of those who don’t want to see them!  (Aren’t I sweet?)  The dissection pictures are posted under the date 1-1-2013, this is so they do not just “appear” on the front page, but if you wanted to find them you could.  Of course, you can also just follow the link . . .

— Dissection description and Photos —

Besides the dissection we did a devotional and had our froggy apron coloring contest.  Everyone received their froggy apron on Friday night, with the explanation that we would need it later on in the weekend, but that we could decorate it anyway we wanted.  There was a contest at the end of the weekend where the aprons were voted on and the winners got prizes!

My Froggy Apron!

My Froggy Apron!

Signatures on my Froggy Apron

Signatures on my Froggy Apron

Right now I am posting from a friends house in VA as I have an appointment here in VA tomorrow.  So tomorrow I get to go play with more friends for a while and then head home.

This was a great weekend.  I learned a lot of science that I didn’t know, got to do blood typing, dissecting and coloring.  I have lots more to share about the weekend and about Landry Academy, but for now – it is late and I am tired.  I will post more over the next few days (including the dissection pictures.)  I will also explain what the white and pink stuff is in the test tube, as well as why I have pictures of alpacas, a fabric store, and what looks like the inside of a  kaleidoscope!

Good Night – Sleep Tight

mcrooker — Homeschooler On the Edge

HEAV Convention Registration Opens April 10th

Opening Wednesday, April 10, at 10 a.m.

Preregistration will open for MEMBERS ONLY with a special price of just $59 for the entire family!  Want to take advantage of the special pricing, but you aren’t a member yet – Join Now!

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and Michael Farris

 Preregistration Opening Wednesday, April 10, at 10 a.m.

Attend the entire three-day convention for one low price, and your spouse and dependent children attend with you FREE!

Not a member? Join now! Membership expiring? Renew now!

Early Preregistration  – $59/member

Members only may register during the three-day early preregistration special. Enjoy All Exhibit Hall and Used Curriculum Sale shopping plus tickets to a Duggar keynote session.*  Non-members may register after the third day at the regular preregistration price.

Regular Preregistration  – $69/member; $79/non-member

Enjoy All Exhibit Hall and Used Curriculum Sale shopping plus tickets to a Duggar keynote session.*

Shopping Only – $19/member; $29/non-member

Enjoy All Exhibit Hall and Used Curriculum Sale shopping and your choice of one workshop.
*Duggar tickets may be reserved only with full-price registrations. (Additional tickets may be available onsite–check at the Information & Security desk.)