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Teachers, we know you’ve got your hands full with back to school preparation. But with a little planning and strategic searching online, you can save precious time and money on everything you need.
Don’t wait. Pick up classroom materials like art supplies, paper clips, posters and other items throughout the year and stockpile them so you aren’t pressed for time right before your students come back to school. It’s also smart to buy small quantities of the items you put on your students’ lists, because you know one or two kids won’t have something essential. Buy more pens and sticky notes than you think you’ll need. “Believe it or not, you’ll need them,” advises Terry Steiner, a fifth-grade teacher in Washington State.
Steiner does his back to school shopping online using the account his school has with the local office supply store. “They deliver in two days,” he adds. Bonus: Most rewards programs provide free shipping to educators. Keep a running list of the supplies and materials you need and place an order when inventory gets low. You’ll have your stock replenished before you run out and avoid unnecessary trips to the store.
There are many ways to save money on classroom supplies. But before you spend a dime, check with your principal or department chair, says Carrie Deahl, a high school teacher in Arizona. Some items may be purchased in bulk by the school, district or a community organization; or there may be restrictions on what teachers can purchase.
“Check with your PTA,” Steiner adds. “They might fund all or part of your needs. My PTA provides $200 per year for supplies.” National organizations like DonorsChoose.org can help reduce the cost associated with specific projects; textbook publishers also offer some discount programs.
Office supply store rewards programs provide teacher-exclusive deals, rebates, free shipping and special discounts on teaching and art supplies. It’s also helpful to check out weekly circulars for sales and coupons that can help you save a little more on certain items.
Follow this advice for saving time and money on back to school shopping and you’ll be able to start the year with a little less stress.
Staples makes it easy for teachers to save money while stocking up on classroom materials and school supplies. Here’s how:
Sign up today and start saving on your back to school shopping!