Spending Money on your Classroom

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Ms.Holyoke, Jun 3, 2018.

  1. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Messages:
    5,592
    Likes Received:
    493

    Jun 5, 2018

    Definitely wait and see what you have in the room and wait at least several weeks into the school year to figure out what you really need prior to purchasing anything. My first year, I was so excited to have a job right out of college (the job market was AWFUL at the time and that was very unexpected) that I ran out and bought things right away. Some of what I bought ended up already being in my classroom, my school did give me a small budget and basic supplies, and other stuff that I bought ended up being totally unnecessary. In my head I'd kind of based my supplies off of how my student teaching placement looked, and my first "real" job ended up being totally different and I didn't need the same materials.

    I gradually spent less and less every year and have been at the point where I haven't spent a dime of my own money over the past 5 years or so. Education funding is abysmal in my state and we've experienced many salary freezes, even though COL in my city has risen exponentially since I moved here. I refuse to spend what little money I have on doing my job. If my school doesn't provide it, I don't use it. For example, we're moving buildings and they quit buying office supplies halfway through the year because the secretary didn't want to have to pack them up/move them. I use dry erase markers constantly in my room, but when we ran out I simply switched to pencil and paper instead.

    I wish all teachers would have an attitude more like mine, honestly. There is no motivation for school/district admins to provide supplies when teachers willingly (in some cases, even happily) go out and buy their own. Nothing will change unless a significant number of teachers stop doing this.

    Just a tip, on some of our desks and tables you can write right on the desk with a dry erase marker and it will easily erase off, just like a white board. I've found it works really well with medium and dark colored desks/tables...NOT on the light colored ones because it doesn't come off all of the way. You can test it out first on whatever is in your room. If you have the right kind of tables/desks you can skip the mini white boards and the kids tend to think writing on the desk is "more fun."
     
    bella84, Backroads and Ms.Holyoke like this.
  2. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Habitué

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    230

    Jun 5, 2018

    I agree that I don't want this to be my first impression!

    I also don't know much about my administration but they seemed great from the interview. Out of all of my interviews, I got the best feel from this school and the principal walked me out saying what a good job I did. Each classroom in this school has a Smartboard and a doc cam. So I do not think my school will provide nothing but I'm of course not sure.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2018
  3. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3,734
    Likes Received:
    578

    Jun 5, 2018

    I'm assuming that if the school doesn't provide the items then you're supposed to ask the students to bring them in? Of course, there's the excuse that the parents can't afford anything so by default the teacher has to buy the items. What a load of %)@#$&*@)&)
     
  4. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,784
    Likes Received:
    1,218

    Jun 5, 2018

    I've never really ran into this problem, but I like to imagine myself (honestly or dishonestly as it may be) just rolling into teaching without such-n-such supplies and just shrugging my shoulders were my principal to demand where such-n-such was. Maybe a cute response such as "You never gave them to me."
     
    Been There likes this.
  5. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Habitué

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    230

    Jun 5, 2018

    I completely agree! I don't know any other job where you are expected to purchase the things that you need. I've had a lot of free time on my hands and I've been addicted to watching teacher YouTube videos. But it seriously shocks me how much they're spending on their classrooms. Everything in their classrooms looks beautiful and is color coordinated but I imagine it costs over $1000. I definitely want to decorate my room but I'm going to use a lot of what I already have. I know I'll probably purchase some organizational stuff that I can keep with me from the Dollar Tree if my school doesn't have any but I don't want to spend over $50 and I want to spend $$ on things I can use throughout my career.
     
  6. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,184
    Likes Received:
    958

    Jun 5, 2018

    Ask yourself: what will the students remember? They'll remember your interactions with them. The engaging learning experiences.

    Also ask yourself: what's best for kids? Not having too much "noise" around the classroom: an organized classroom with specifically-planned out walls. I doubt a paper owl has driven more success in a classroom or cause a child to like a teacher more than another teacher who doesn't have that same paper owl in their classroom.
     
    bella84 and MissScrimmage like this.
  7. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,184
    Likes Received:
    958

    Jun 5, 2018

    Ask yourself: what will the students remember? They'll remember your interactions with them. The engaging learning experiences.

    Also ask yourself: what's best for kids? Not having too much "noise" around the classroom: an organized classroom with specifically-planned out walls. I doubt a paper owl has driven more success in a classroom or cause a child to like a teacher more than another teacher who doesn't have that same paper owl in their classroom.
     
  8. monkeyrun

    monkeyrun Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2014
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    17

    Jun 5, 2018

    I have learned less is more! One of my favorite things in my room is my wall of pictures. The kids love it, visitors love it. I'm just adding to it each year (and moving the pictures with me to each new classroom I move to :anguished:). I just print the pictures cheap from Walgreens. There are so many activities you can do with so little, as well!
     
    Backroads likes this.
  9. scholarteacher

    scholarteacher Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,684
    Likes Received:
    38

    Jun 7, 2018

    We buy our own copy paper, stuff for learning centers, most student supplies, classroom decor, almost everything except the curriculum. I spend about $3000 a year on my classroom.
     
  10. Janlee70

    Janlee70 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3

    Jun 7, 2018

    In my 32 years of teaching I didn’t even come close to spending this amount of money nor would I. I taught in a small district in Orange County, NY where the school district felt if it was needed for the students you got it. Plus there was a supply closet if you ran out of something. My union played a big part in helping secure this, too. My money was spent on making small gifts at holidays for family members and goodie bags at the beginning and end of school. Even though it was a middle class district the majority of parents had their children come to school with the necessary supplies.
     
  11. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,784
    Likes Received:
    1,218

    Jun 7, 2018

    So, is this like a contracted thing? You walk into the job knowing you are expected to pay all that?
     
  12. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Habitué

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    230

    Jun 7, 2018

    I'm seriously shocked that some teachers have to purchase their own copy paper.
     
    whizkid likes this.
  13. miss-m

    miss-m Habitué

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2014
    Messages:
    905
    Likes Received:
    382

    Jun 7, 2018

    We don't have to buy our own, but our supply is somewhat limited in my district. When I student taught, reams of paper were actually on the STUDENT'S supply lists, in a high-poverty district! That rubbed me the wrong way.
    My current school (same district), we get a case of paper each semester. For teachers like me who minimize printing or print multiple pages per sheet, that's fine. For a lot of my coworkers though, they're out in a couple months.
     
  14. bella84

    bella84 Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,795
    Likes Received:
    895

    Jun 7, 2018

    I worked at a charter school where we were given one ream of paper for month. It was kept under lock and key. The assistant principal had to accompany you into the storage room for fear that you might take more than one ream. I often bought my own paper when I worked there.

    Now I work in a district that freely allows us to use as much paper as we need, and I use a whole lot less.
     
    Backroads likes this.
  15. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    3,879
    Likes Received:
    765

    Jun 7, 2018

    Our teachers get one case/semester.

    However, our district has a Print Shop. Teachers have the option of sending large orders to the Print Shop. Takes a few days for the item to be delivered back to the site once it's ordered, but it's great for bulk printing (decodable readers, fluency packets, posters/banners, etc.).
     
  16. Backroads

    Backroads Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,784
    Likes Received:
    1,218

    Jun 7, 2018

    I have no problem with copy limits, or perhaps a budget that you can use to buy copy paper or trained seals as you see fit. Or the Print Shop thing. As long as the school has a procedure of reasonably providing what you might need.

    Either way, it's terribly unprofessional to have teachers pay out of pocket for necessary school supplies.
     
  17. whizkid

    whizkid Companion

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    180
    Likes Received:
    44

    Jun 8, 2018

    It's pretty much the standard here, even with a supplemental federal spending card.
     
  18. whizkid

    whizkid Companion

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    180
    Likes Received:
    44

    Jun 8, 2018

    I can't think of too many more occupations where one literally has to spend their own money to be able to operate on the job!
     
  19. Been There

    Been There Cohort

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2017
    Messages:
    654
    Likes Received:
    385

    Jun 8, 2018

    Over many decades, our collective willingness to shell out our own money for supplies and equipment has made it the norm. We have ourselves to blame for this unusual expectation in the teaching profession. Even when ample school funds are available, not all administrators are as supportive as Janlee's.
     
  20. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Habitué

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    766
    Likes Received:
    230

    Jun 8, 2018

    I am really hoping that my district does not have paper limits/copying limits. My student teaching district had teachers enter a code when they had to copy but there were no limits. I think this is the best way to do it because admin can reach out to teachers who are copying too much. I feel like the amount that you copy often depends on the subject you teach. For math, we did not have any textbooks or a curriculum. So we had to copy a Do Now, a Reference, a Classwork, and an Exit Ticket for students every single day. This was a lot of paper, which I didn't like, but I also didn't see any way around it.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Leaborb192,
  2. i.heart.trees,
  3. 2Sharp,
  4. MissCeliaB,
  5. jadorelafrance,
  6. bella84,
  7. agdamity,
  8. Ms.Holyoke
Total: 571 (members: 10, guests: 463, robots: 98)
test