Back to School Supplies

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Day 18 of #BTBC14
What are your teacher "must-have items" that you buy at the beginning of the school year?

     School supply sales always start mid to late July, and I am always there... Filling a cart and hoping that the store doesn't have quantity limits on the items.  I even bought some stuff on my honeymoon because we went during prime sales time.  Oh, the life of a teacher.

     The items that I buy I only buy when they are on sale, and set myself up for a year.  Our students bring things in from a supply list, so they do bring items to school.  However, not everyone brings in all their items and I prefer to have what is really needed on hand.  I like to get routines and things started right from the beginning, so some of my first days of school are set establishing materials.  Rather than wait for them all to trickle in, I fill a cart at Target and have extras available.  

Blank 2 pocket folders.  I always buy 35 of three different colors for Not Finished Folders.  I usually replaced them in January because they were falling apart.  The extra set was just to have in case I needed another folder.

Spiral Notebooks and Composition Notebooks.  The number I bought each year depended on the number I still had in my stock from the previous year. I always buy at least 30 notebooks to use as journals, and usually 10-15 composition notebooks.  They are always much cheaper in back to school sales, but not all my students would bring them in September.  My Thinking Journals are so necessary that I just buy extras.
Crayola Markers.  Once again, they are much cheaper at the beginning of the year.  I usually buy at least 18 boxes, so that there are 3 boxes per community tub for each table in my classroom.  That way, if we need markers and don't want to waste time getting our materials, the community tubs always have them.

Pencils. I buy a TON of these.  They just don't see to last.  I really think that missing socks and missing pencils are just things in life that happen.  Not sure why...

Printer Labels.  What do I do with all those notebooks, composition books, and folders that are so important to my classroom that I spend my own money to make sure I have them?  I label them, of course.  I always make runs of labels for all the common items I want the kids to have, whether they go on their own notebooks or the ones I purchased.  Math Journal, Thinking Journal, Not Finished Folders, computer passwords, etc.  

     Last year I left the classroom, so I did not make my annual back to school purchased.  Big mistake!  It turns out that I needed many of the materials anyway, and ended up spending a lot more money buying them mid year and not during the sales.  Lesson learned!  

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