Money to spend - HELP!

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by LovetoteachPREK, May 18, 2011.

  1. LovetoteachPREK

    LovetoteachPREK Companion

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    May 18, 2011

    OK - so - good problem to have. I have $300 to spend on my classroom for next year. First I was going to spend it all on consumables - paint, play doh, foam, etc.

    But my classroom is still fairly new, and I really need a lot of other materials. A big concern is that next year both my classes will be really heavy on boys (20 students, 15 boys.)

    I just can't decide what the best use of this money is...more puzzles? Art supplies? Manipulatives? Curriculum materials?

    I should add that what I REALLY want is a set of hollow blocks and arches and tunnels - but that eats up the entire budget in one swoop. Anyone have those and would it be worth it?

    What would YOU do????
     
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  3. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    May 18, 2011

    Tubbing stuff:
    Bristle blocks
    Duplo blocks
    Pattern shapes
    Plastic animals for categorizing/patterning
    Magnet letters and metal tray
    Lincoln logs
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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  5. beckyeduk8er

    beckyeduk8er Comrade

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    May 18, 2011

    I LOVE my hallow blocks and they are played with every day! The kids love them and they are able to create amazing things.
     
  6. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    May 18, 2011

    MMMMM I do love hollow blocks, and unit blocks. I am not sure what you have already in your room. I am assuming it isn't totally bare.

    I would say with that many boys have enough materials outside. Have a great set of real type bugs, not necessarily the dollar store kind, have a sensory table (even if it is an under the bed rubbermaid type tote). Many, many, many types of writing utensils and different paper (plain white, plain copy paper but in colors like green and blue and what not, sticky notes, blank cards, blank business cards are a hit here, envelopes). Do you have enough balls and shovels for the outside time?
     
  7. LovetoteachPREK

    LovetoteachPREK Companion

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    May 19, 2011

    No, my room isn't totally bare. We're slowly getting more and more materials. I ordered unit blocks earlier in the year and have a set of career people to go with them, some zoo type animals, vehicles and some bigger cardboard blocks. I have a sensory table and a rubbermaid tote that I use also, since I have 20 kids at a time.

    The bugs are a great idea :)

    I defintely want some duplo blocks, and am hoping to find some at a garage sale this summer.

    Hmmm, outside...we don't have the best playground. We do have lots of balls and I have been promised some trikes and a sand table, but we'll see.

    Keep those good "boy" ideas coming...I'm going to need them! Right now, my housekeeping area and beauty salon are very popular, but next year might be a different story.
     
  8. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    May 19, 2011

    Tinker toys...I've been trying to remember the name of these for 2 days!:spitwater:
     
  9. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    May 19, 2011

  10. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    May 19, 2011


    With my boys (which is almost all of my years) we use the "housekeeping" center to role play along with the theme. With all girl groups the housekeeping is so busy doing it's jobs that it isn't changed without resistance from the class. Right now our "housekeeping" area is Farmers Market where we are buying and selling produce for pennies. Last month it was a pet store with habitats for all the toy animals we could round up.
     
  11. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    May 20, 2011

    My boys love floor puzzles and just about any type of manipulatives. Do you have magnets and magnifying glasses - tweezers, tongs, eye droppers, good scissors? Lots of different tools for painting and drawing? Some good music and movement CDs?
     
  12. LovetoteachPREK

    LovetoteachPREK Companion

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    May 20, 2011

    Tools for painting are definitely on my list, scmom:)

    Now, speaking of music and movement CDs...yes I have them, but it seems like the boys think they are too girly or something? Most of them stand like stones. What is up with that?
     
  13. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    If the alpha boys in the class decide music and movement is girly, then most of the boys won't do it, but if they enjoy doing it, the other boys will too. Sad, but true.

    I have good luck with the limbo, animal movement songs, silly songs and they like the Tooty Ta if that helps any.
     
  14. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    May 20, 2011

    Yes, it is all about the alpha boys/and the girls. We can't get away with anything "preschoolish" but we love the clean early ed "Hip Hop Alpha Bob" CD. It has an abc song on it and a Humpty Dumpty and a 3 Bears song. We also like the hip hop type arrangement of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. The limbo and many of the local marimba bands music is a hit.
     
  15. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

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    May 21, 2011

    I had a class with 18 boys once. They loved any type of building toy. Visit some of the outstanding early chilldhood blogs such as Teacher Tom and others to get some ideas of things you can add to the classroom that are both cheap and interesting to kids. For example, I made set of tube builders from plumbing items I got from Home Depot. I would look to purchase items such as sand and other stuff from nontraditional sources. Check out YouTube and other sites that specialize in "how to make" to get ideas on how to make things for cheap for your class. Can you enlist the help of the parents to get things for the class?
     
  16. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

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    May 21, 2011

    Also, I don't purchase anything I can get for free from the library and other sources. For example, my library lets you check out 99 items at a time. They carry books, software, music, story books on tapes and cd, videos. They have a teacher lending library with theme kits and other teacher resources. The librarian will visit our classrooms and read stories or we visit the libraries. I get resource books from the library too. Enlist your families to save recyclables for you. I collect them by the week. We do it across the entire EC program. For example, right after holidays, we ask for left over cards, gift paper, small gift boxes, etc. If there are some sororities or fraternities in the area, get them to adopt your class. Make friends with the kindergarten teachers in your area. We get lots of stuff at the end of the year from the public school teachers. Don't be afraid to ask for stuff! I get those fabric boards from the sewing shop in my area and the kids love to use them in the block area. I get a good supply of small boxes from Walmart whenever I visit early in the morning and they are stocking the shelves. Cover them with construction paper and packing tape and they make great buidling blocks. I get free magazines from doctors/dentists offices. Just ask, you never know. Carry your business cards with you and hand them out. I get calls now from people wanting to donate things to our program. Home Depot will visit your program for free and do the building workshops for parents and kids and they provide all the materials. I also get free wood and parent workshop donations from them as well.
     
  17. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    May 21, 2011

    Three or four people saving all of their recyclables for a month or two will really fill out your room as well. Storage containers, block area additions..........monster/robot construction are props......invention tables.....all of these are not based on big ticket items! My kids love jumping in the recycle bin to find out what they can imagine with that day!
     
  18. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    May 26, 2011

    I have almost all boys this year. (AM is 8 boys, PM is 9 boys and 1 girl)

    Right now, dramatic play has a tent. It was a "butterfly tent" at first until they ripped down the butterfly diecuts... they've usually decided it's a cave.

    They love my bug hats right now, too... found them on sale at Michael's and they fight to get to wear them, although they do share ;) Although the ladybug apaprently buzzes, who knew?

    They LOVE LOVE LOVE magnifying glasses and, for some reason, tongs/tweezers. We did "bug races" the other day where they had to use the tongs (or spoons, when the tongs broke) to move plastic bugs across the room. They would have done it all day.

    Also the bowling sets are really really popular. Silly Six Pins (without the batteries!!!) is my favorite because they can't fight over the set-up :).
     

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