When it comes to school supplies, it’s in your heart to provide the most basic items your classroom needs. This makes almost all teachers asking themselves the same question, “How can I save on high school classroom supplies?”
It’s a never-ending cycle of needing new supplies every year to help out kids learn the best they can in the classroom.
There’s nothing more exciting than to be in a school supply store with an empty cart waiting for me to fill it with stuff I’ll be needing for the school year ahead. I’m already seeing markers, colorful gel pens, and a lot more.
I was like a kid in a candy store trying to pick out the best ones for me to munch on. But then sadly, I finally came to my senses being restricted by the thought that I was on a budget and might not be able to splurge that much due to financial reasons.
I knew I needed to find a way to still get what I needed for my classroom supplies but in a way that’s not going to break my bank.
<<On the lookout for the best classroom supplies for high school? We listed 10 basic items every high school teacher must have.
How Can I Save On High School Classroom Supplies? 8 Great Ways To Avoid Breaking The Bank!
1.) Declutter And Analyze What You Already Have
I know that it’s nice to have new supplies and everything, but you might be surprised as to what you already have hiding in your drawer. It’s a must strategy before creating a supplies list.
Discovering that you still have a few extra stocks from last year helps minimize your list of things to buy. You’ll be amazed as to how many pens, pencils, papers, crayons, and other school items are hiding in your closet all this time.
2.) Always Buy In Bulk
A money-saving trick I learned from my mother when I was young was to always buy in bulk.
When you buy in bulk you’ll be saving time and money at the same time, because you’ll never have to always go for a supply run every now and then because you already have a supply ready for use anytime and any day.
You’ll be making fewer trips to the supply store because most classroom supplies are non-perishable, which makes them ideal for buying in bulk—they’ll never go bad and will still be in mint condition as long as you store them properly.
This also saves you tons of money because they do offer good deals for items that are sold in bulk. Not to mention the gas money you’ll be spending every time you go out for a supply run. A great way to go green!
3.) Try Supply Swaps
Did you notice any surplus supplies by the end of the school year lying around your classroom or at home? Consider going for a supply swap with your co-teachers at school, kinda like a barter type of transaction. You can even join Facebook groups online that do this kind of exchange.
It’s like upcycling your unused materials. You’ll end up helping others while getting something good for you, too. You can also get the parents of your students involved, as for sure they too have excess school supplies at their home too. It’s helpful both for your pocket and going green as well!
4.) Don’t Be Shy To Ask For Donations
One thing that teachers should keep in mind is that they are not alone, everyone and especially parents know the struggles that teachers are facing in this very challenging role that they face every day in school.
As teachers are voluntarily spending their own money to buy classroom supplies, it’s not a sin to try and ask parents for any kind of help to gather classroom supplies their children are going to use. Parents are also thankful for all the hard work teachers and will do everything to extend.
Teachers can try sorting out a class wish list, where they can let parents know which supplies are mostly needed by the classroom. The list can be created before the school year starts so that you can be up and ready full of classroom supplies before the battle begins.
You can also head on and ask family and friends too, it’s all for a good cause!
5.) Target Clearance Sales
Bargains and discounts always put the fun in shopping, am I right? Even with school supplies so don’t skimp on clearance sales!
Most companies use clearance sales as a way to get rid of excess inventories which means they will be selling off most of their products at a much lower price compared to regular retail prices.
You’ll be surprised with the good finds at clearance sales, you’ll be getting good deals matching up with good prices. It’s always great to buy stuff at a reduced price, especially with classroom supplies.
Especially during end-of-season sales, you’ll mostly find good items that were previously too expensive for you to buy that are now super affordable that you can even purchase two or three of them.
6.) Take It To Social Media
Another great thing that you can benefit from social media is by following your favorite supply stores for any sale or discount announcement that they make which is mostly through social media these days.
Many companies try to reach their target audience through social media because everyone is on social media nowadays! So you better turn on your notification button for your favorite stores to catch up with any great sale announcements which you will surely benefit great deals from.
They sometimes even give out digital coupons to which can greatly help if you’re shopping online because everything seems to be done online these days.
But personally, I still do prefer visiting a store in person, nothing beats a hands-on experience when shopping, especially for classroom supplies because you get to really scan the items that you are getting unlike online you only see pictures and reviews as well.
7.) Know When Is The Best Time To Buy
Contrary to popular belief, August may not be the best month to go shopping for classroom materials.
You might need to aim for your target during September and October because this is usually the time when the store is trying to get rid of all the excess school supplies that did not sell-off in August. You can also try mid-July because this is when stores are usually giving way school supplies, will offer large discounts here and there.
8.) Opt For Grants And Crowdfundings
As a last resort, if you’re really in a spot and really don’t have the financial margin to purchase supplies for your classrooms, you can opt to get Grants or crowdsource because humanity never fails, especially during tough times.
There are Grants available for educators, and the two most commonly known types of grants—the Federal Grants and Private Grants—these two types of grants can be utilized by teachers to aid them with funds for classroom supplies.
Federal grants are economic aid provided by the United States government to help educators. You can also source out all the available grants through the listing in Grants.gov—then apply a filter to get to the Education section.
If you have an eye on Crowdfunding, this is also a great way to get additional funding to help you gather important supplies for your classroom.
This is done through the donation of any amount through a large number of people—and as you can imagine with technology and social media nowadays people can connect in many ways and help each other even with just a small amount of donation—A little really goes a long way.
Avoid going too overwhelmed in curating a new list of high school classroom supplies to purchase. While teachers are always trying to find ways just to save some money when buying classroom supplies, being creative tests out resourcefulness, creativity, and practicality. You just need to have a little faith and some luck along the way to overcome them, and I know for sure you will!