Alternatives to Book Boxes?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by miss-m, Jul 31, 2016.

  1. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Pretty self-explanatory, but what are some alternatives to student book boxes? I can check dollar tree for boxes, but I'd rather not spend too much on my classroom right away if possible (tight budget and no paycheck until the end of August :/). Ideally I'd even like to get something I could find on Amazon or at Bed, Bath, and Beyond since I have gift cards and I wouldn't have to spend out of pocket.
    I keep thinking I could do some of those little totes, and they could hang them with their backpacks in their cubbies, but I think that might be tough in the winter once coats start showing up. I'm not a huge fan of the plastic slanted boxes, tbh, because they generally only come in obnoxious primary colors and they fall over as soon as you put anything bigger than a few chapter books in them (which is most books in 2nd grade).
    Anyway, I'm rambling. What are some ways kids could store their good fit books besides boxes?
     
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  3. TheGr8Catsby

    TheGr8Catsby Rookie

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    I've seen gallon-sized ziplock bags used. I'm not a huge fan, but I could see how some would like them instead of the book boxes.
     
  4. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    IKEA has really cheap cardboard book boxes. You have to secure them with packing tape though, otherwise they fall apart on the bottom. They cost .99 for a pack of four: http://m.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/art/00324132/

    An alternative is to use book bags, the gallon size plastic ones you can get from the grocery store. :)
     
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  5. melnm

    melnm Companion

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    In kindergarten we used the gallon-sized ziplock bags because space was an issue. A coworker had her class bring in empty cereal boxes and they decorated them, so that wouldn't cost anything.
     
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  6. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Are you at all interested in taking a free box and using some contact paper on them? I ask because the Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box, which is free, could yield two book boxes out of one flat rate box with a couple of cuts. That adhesive they put on the ends is SUPER tough, so wouldn't need reinforcement.

    Just a thought.
     
  7. monkeyrun

    monkeyrun Rookie

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    I've seen the gallon bags, too. If I didn't have to use the boxes my school provided I think I'd use those. When I taught fifth I just didn't bother with anything. Kids just kept two books at their desks and if they moved they just took both with them. By that point, most students were reading chapter books and wouldn't need more than one a day.
     
  8. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    I'm pretty sure that's actually technically illegal, so no. >_<
     
  9. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    I think I'll probably end up doing gallon bags, at least for this year. Then they can keep them in their cubbies, which makes it easier to find their own books when needed. I'd love to have nice bags or something, but I just can't afford it this year.
     
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  10. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Gallon bags are what the teachers on my team used last year. They work and are easy to replace when they get icky.
     
  11. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    My son gets shipments in that size box all the time. The options once they have arrived is to either put them in a landfill or find another use for them that doesn't involve shipping with another carrier. I have taught my son how to cut them at the middle to open, allowing me to use each half as a repurposed container. I honestly don't believe that is illegal, but it goes against the grain with me to simply throw them away. Didn't mean to offend.
     
  12. TheGr8Catsby

    TheGr8Catsby Rookie

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    vickilyn: I think that that OP was saying that it would be illegal to request them new for the purpose of using them as book boxes, not to recycle them.
     
  13. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    I specifically mentioned that size of box because it is so common to receive goods in. It is the go to box of Ebay and many online stores, therefore easy to acquire. My gosh, I wish I taught elementary, because I have enough of those to provide book boxes for a whole class. Hubby buys from Amazon, son buys on Ebay, and my sister sends me "finds" that she thinks I would look good in (she has the fashion sense). Because I don't have a dedicated purpose, I cut them in half and use them for some of my tree seedlings. It is time to plant the tree just before the box falls apart - the whole thing goes into the ground, keeping those new roots intact. I guess you could say that I like to think "outside the box" when it comes to reusing boxes.
     
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  14. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    I don't think it's illegal to use the boxes. Plenty of things on Pinterest and other sights have said to use them to create materials for the classroom. They are free at the post office, nobody it going to know what you use them for it's really not a big deal. I myself and other teacher friends have used them as well.
     
  15. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    To answer the original question just use gallon ziplock bags. Cheapest and easiest. We use book baggies that go behind the chair but that's only because my school provides them. By 4th grade I only let them keep 2-3 chapter books so if they lost their book baggy or it breaks they just put it in their desk.
     
  16. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    To answer the original question just use gallon ziplock bags. Cheapest and easiest. We use book baggies that go behind the chair but that's only because my school provides them. By 4th grade I only let them keep 2-3 chapter books so if they lost their book baggy or it breaks they just put it in their desk.
     
  17. Teach with hope.

    Teach with hope. Rookie

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    These actually work great when you reinforce the edges with a bit of duck tape. I've done it before and the book bags lasted all year.

    Hope
     
  18. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    All these posts about duct tape are making me really glad I didn't throw mine out when I moved, even though it's been years since I used it last. XD
     
  19. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I have these awesome plastic sleeve things. I was looking for your same issue last year and my team lead said she had a bunch stashed away in her closet.
     

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