How do you handle this?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by K-5_teacherguy, Jul 7, 2016.

  1. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    Jul 7, 2016

    Now that my summer is beyond the halfway point, I have really started thinking ahead about the improvements I want to make in my second year of teaching. One thing I can't decide on is how I want to handle student supplies. Last year, each kid kept their own, individual supplies. But I can't tell you the number of times kids lost their supplies, or had something "stolen" (we are departmentalized so other classes are in the room too).

    So, I am thinking I want to just do community supplies this year. My only hesitation is that I don't want a bunch of upset kids on the first day of school because they don't get their own special markers, post-it notes, index cards, etc. I teach 5th grade, so I wouldn't think it'd matter to them as much as kids in younger grades, but still. How do you organize student supplies in your classroom? Have you used the community approach before? Any input/ideas would be appreciated. Thanks, and I hope everyone is enjoying the time off!
     
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  3. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    I like the idea of community supplies but too many of our parents would be up in arms if we collected their child's supplies and did community supplies. Some parents spend a lot on name brand while others buy store brand and they let us know when their chid's things have been "stolen" or used without their child's permission. We just have them label all their supplies and send home notes when supplies need to be replenished.
     
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  4. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I collect generic things like gluesticks and pencils and post its. The kids keep the rest of their stuff in their desks. They know when they run out, they can get more as I've stored them for their use. It's never been s problem.
     
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  5. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Jul 7, 2016

    Personally (and again--I'm not expecting everyone to feel this way), I have never liked the idea of community supplies.

    I always had my kiddos keep their supplies in their pencil box (I used to call it their "tool box").

    Since you're departmentalized, can you have the kiddos take their tool boxes with them from class to class? Or collect the tool boxes at the end of class and put them in a designated area?
     
  6. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    YTG- this might depend on grade level, but my kids' supplies won't fit in a single pencil box and as noted in an earlier post here, third grades can't manage/are distracted by too much 'stuff' in their desks.
    OP, since you share the classroom with other students/classes, could you have kids bring plastic shoeboxes labeled with their names in which to keep supplies and have them stored on a shelf in your room?
     
  7. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Shoeboxes??? DUH! This is such a nifty idea!!! I am going to share it with my 6th grade team (they're the only grade-level that's departmentalized at my K-6 site).
     
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  8. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Since I supply everything, all school supplies are technically mine. :). Our PTO does fundraisers during the year, then the teachers are given $20 per student to buy all necessary supplies. It's nice in that there are zero arguments about who's bid of crayons it really is.

    If you have a central storage area, you can have them label the supplies they don't use daily and store away from their desk. A friend of mine has a five drawer organizer. They keep crayons in one drawer, scissors in another, etc. When needed, the supply person passes out the supplies.
     
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  9. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    I let students keep their own supplies in their desks - and they only kept what they needed at their desk (2 pencils, 1 eraser, 1 glue stick, 1 highlighter, markers, scissors and pencil crayons, all stored in a pencil case). All the extra supplies went into individually labeled large zip-loc bags, which were all stored in a tub. When students ran out of a specific supply, they went to the tub, retrieved their own bag with their name on it and replenished their desk supply.
     
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  10. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    I use community supplies for the main things...pencils, erasers, paper, markers, glue, etc. If a student has some special items they don't want to share, they are free to keep them at their desk.
     
  11. MissMae

    MissMae Rookie

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    I do community supplies. On the first day I have the kiddos put all their supplies in big boxes. After school I go through and sort them put into categories and put them away. I tell parents and kiddos all supplies will becomes class supplies.

    I got the long rectangular Sterilite bins with blue handles and organized into markers, crayons, scissors, glue, rulers, etc.

    Whenever we are doing an activity that needs supplies I pull out the bin or bins needed and students help themselves. At the end of the activity a student will go around with the bin collecting everything and I put them away again.

    The only supplies they had was a pen and their journals, I didon't really let them have anything else because they would either break it, lose it, or fight over it. Worked for me and will be continuing it
     
  12. geoteacher

    geoteacher Habitué

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    This debate comes up every year. I can only speak from personal experience. My two children were both in classroom where they had community supplies. They absolutely hated it! They brought the required supplies, and then they were required (sometimes) to use the products supplied by others. Somehow the brand name markers and crayons were always the first chosen, and what was left was not always good.
     
  13. mkbren88

    mkbren88 Cohort

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    I've always done community supplies but this year I'm going to have students in charge of their own supplies. I've only asked them to supply crayons, colored pencils , jumbo glue stick, black dry erase markers and pink erasers for themselves in their pencil boxes. All pencils will be a community supply that I will give out to students. I have many glue bottles, scissors and other supplies left over from previous years to use in a supply caddy when doing a project. I've always liked community supplies because not everyone can provide supplies and if they are in charge of their own, well then they have nothing. With community, everyone has a fair opportunity to have and use supplies in class.
     
  14. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    I think I will try using community supplies for the most basic essentials (pencils, post-its, markers/crayons), and then have them keep everything else in a shoe box/pencil box, etc. that can be stored.

    Thanks for all the great suggestions!
     
  15. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

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    The one suggestion I would make is that if you are going to use community supplies, it be clearly listed that way on your supply list. We make markers, crayons, and colored pencils community supplies (we are departmentalized) and our supply list says these items are community supplies. Other things (pencils, glue stick, scissors, etc.) are kept in a pencil pouch in their binder, and these are listed as individual supplies.

    We tried pencil boxes that "traveled" and they constantly ended up being dropped in the hallways during transitions and the supplies skittered all over the floor, which is why we went to pencil pouches.
     
  16. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Jul 9, 2016

    I take everything up. I make sure everyone gets their own crayons. I pass out glue as needed. I also make sure everyone gets their own notebook and folders. I provide scissors. The rest we share.
     
  17. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

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    This is the same thing that I do.
     
  18. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I teach 2nd grade, and I have what I consider to be a happy medium. Our supply note specifically says to not write names on everything but a pencil pouch/box as the rest of the stuff is community. So be it. But, when school begins, I do offer the kids/parents the option to write their names on notebooks, folders, and scissors. Why? The notebooks and folders and going to be pretty personal anyway, scissors are a big deal to little kids, and the glue sticks, pencils, and crayons are so generic and consumable no one really cares about those anyway. Even though I have many poor families in my school, I've never had a problem with getting enough supplies that it's just not an issue. After that, crayons and glue sticks and pencils are really up for grabs as needed. I have done a mid-of-the-table bucket before, but I've also just let kids keep what they need.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2016
  19. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    I don't really do community supplies for things like crayons, pens, markers, and other "tools". Each kid has their own box of "tools", this way they are responsible for their items.
     
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  20. msz101

    msz101 Rookie

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    Jul 12, 2016

    Certain supplies, I collect and and store for the students. I know that sometimes parents get upset with community supplies so I make sure certain supplies that I collect, post it notes, index cards, packages of pencils are labeled with their names so when they run out I would give them their supply from the storage area. Most of the time if you leave all the supplies in a students desk, it disappears within a couple of months. Hope this helps
     

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