Organizing Supplies - Good idea?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Bella2010, Jul 4, 2013.

  1. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    Jul 4, 2013

    My partner teacher likes the idea of communal supplies. I don't, but whatever. To me, it's just a mess. One kid brings cooler markers than the other, has the big pack of map pencils, the boxes they come in fall apart, put them in bags and the same thing happens, etc.

    So, we have two blocks and the kids share supplies. My homeroom uses her kids' if they need them while in there, and the same goes for my room. Hope that makes sense. :confused:

    We got a $100 purchase order (yay!) this year. I am using mine at Walmart. I'm thinking about buying some cheapish school supply boxes, I even thought about the small Ziploc take-a-long container things, for kids to put their supplies in and writing a number on each box. I would assign a number to each kid. The kid would be responsible for all the supplies in that box, and the boxes would be kept in my room. So, a kid in my homeroom would basically share a box of supplies with a kid from my partner teacher's room. Hope that makes sense???

    Like let's say box #1 is little Johnny's from my homeroom. Little Suzie from my partner teacher's room would also use the supplies in box #1.

    Opinions?

    Beth
     
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  3. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Jul 4, 2013

    I admire that you want to be organized, but it sure sounds like more work than it would be worth. It might work well if they are using desks, not tables, and could leave the box inside the desk. But the whole point of communal supplies is that they belong to the class, not to individuals.

    If you have numbers on them, will you hand them out and collect them back each day ? (unless they leave them in desks, then when you move one student, it changes what number box they must use.) I personally prefer individual supplies as well, but understand why communal supplies work better in a coteaching environment.


    I taught in a team situation similar to what you have mentioned. I agree with your coteacher on one thing -- if the kids move from room to room, communal supplies are the way to go. Carrying pencil boxes from room to room always leads to them being dropped on the way, and everything spilling out into the hall way. What a mess, and what a time waster.

    My opinion is to keep things as simple as possible.

    Best of luck!

    -Rain
     
  4. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    Jul 4, 2013

    I'm having trouble explaining it, lol. I'll blame it on my summer brain. :p

    The kids would have pencils already. Basically, the only things that would be in the boxes would be markers, colored pencils, scissors, and glue - art supplies. They will only use these supplies maybe once a week or so in my class.

    I would take all of my homeroom kids' and do the box thing. Partner teacher would take all of her homeroom kids' and do whatever it is she wants. The boxes would be stacked on a table, and the kids would get their box only when needed. So, her homeroom kids would use my homeroom kids'. Basically, they would be sharing my homeroom kids' supplies. The boxes wouldn't leave the room. So, regardless of whether or not I have her kids or mine, I would have supplies readily available. The kids wouldn't be carrying them back and forth.
     
  5. thirdgradebuzz

    thirdgradebuzz Comrade

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    Jul 4, 2013

    I think your system would work fine if the boxes are just to be passed out when needed.

    My teammate does something similar. She made a class set of plastic shoe-boxes that each contain a set of the math manipulatives she uses most often. So when the kids need to use something, they grab the boxes and get out what they need.
     
  6. mstnteacherlady

    mstnteacherlady Cohort

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    I think this would work! I found (at times) that even when I had tubs with supplies for each table, they would go missing and nobody would take responsibility or students would argue over them. I like the idea of students having a specific number from already organized supplies and only picking up the box when needed.
     
  7. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    This was a huge issue last year. Toward the end of school, there was only one black marker. One. Black. Marker. I have no idea where 24 black markers went.
     
  8. mstnteacherlady

    mstnteacherlady Cohort

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    That would be reason enough for me to organize them in the way you're considering. I'm leaning that way more myself! Yes, it would take a little extra time up front, but maybe that's something the kids could help with at the beginning of the year...give them ownership of their supplies. I think it would be beneficial in the long run!
     
  9. gottateachtx

    gottateachtx Rookie

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    I have done this for years, and am quite happy with it. However, some kids do occasionally bring supplies that are special to them, so I tell them to keep them in their desks, pencil boxes, lockers, whatever. Or keep them at home and use them there!
     
  10. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    Love those ideas! I always buy some extra supplies and could substitute that kiddo's with those and let him/her either keep them separate or take them home.
     
  11. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    I stood my ground for communal supplies. We took crayons off the list and just left colored pencils. We added a binder pouch, and they will keep their colored pencils in there.
     
  12. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Jul 5, 2013

    I'm also a stickler for communal supplies (of course, 1/2 of my kids won't bring supplies at all). I don't allow spiral binders, for instance, and when someone does bring one, I simply tell them to take it home for practice. By using communal supplies, I don't have the jealousy issues - everyone has everything they need. The only exception? If you mis-use "my" supplies, then you have nothing to use :)
     
  13. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

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    Supplies are always an issue for me but this year even more so. I taught first grade the last 4 years and this year I'm teaching kinder. Most of the kinder teachers use the communal thing because they have round tables. I'm using desks. They will get to keep their supplies in their desk. Only problem is school boxes are not on the supply list. In fact our supply list is very outdated. Needs revamping but I didn't feel like I had enough seniority in the kinder hallway to say we need a change. Most of them have been teaching kindergarten for over 20 years with the exception of 3 including me. So I am having to ask parents to get extra things. It does say on the list that each teacher may want extra supplies.
     
  14. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    Jul 5, 2013

    I make it clear when students are given their supply list which items will be part of the community supply so students don't bring extra special stuff.

    I don't allow students to keep their own pencil cases, fancy erasers, sharpeners, and things like that at their seats. I tell them to keep them at home for homework.

    I have so many leftover crayons, colored pencils, markers, etc. I don't think I'll even ask for them this year. I'm going to ask for highlighters and dry erase markers instead. The kids use those way more than crayons anyway. They'll be community supplies.
     

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