Classroom procedures for supplies

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by TeachCafe, Jul 28, 2015.

  1. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Jul 28, 2015

    What are your procedures for classroom supplies?

    I see so much on Pinterest and it seems simple but it's not at least to me.

    I want to pretty much eliminate movement for supplies for each class and have everything they need at their table. Pencils, glue, writing journals, etc. I have desk community buckets for writing and glue and stuff and plastic milk crates for my AM and PM journals, folders, etc.


    But how do that work? For a classroom job is one child responsible for making sure every table has sufficient pencils sharpened? Each class and that every table has supplies? Those cute little "sharpen" "dull/sharpen me" buckets on Pinterest look cute but kids break pencils like crazy. So all class long kids are hopping up putting a pencil in the dull bucket and getting a sharp one?

    I want them to be responsible or their own supplies but before class actually starts. For both morning and afternoon. They'll be enough movement with purpose so I'd rather not the I need paper, a eraser, scissors, etc. It's all at the table.

    How do you teach your supply procedures?
     
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  3. Ted

    Ted Habitué

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    Jul 29, 2015

    I'll be following this, as I'm also curious.

    TeachCafe - if you know of links of ideas, please consider sharing them. :)
     
  4. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Jul 29, 2015

    I have used community buckets on each group of tables for a long time. In that bucket I include the supplies you mention as well as a small pencil sharpener. By 4th grade, students can be responsible for sharpening their own pencils and replacing bucket supplies as necessary.

    I have also made seat back pockets for each desk chair to keep journals and other necessary items that don't fit in desks. This alleviates excess storage containers like milk crates, in my small classroom.
     
  5. OneBerry

    OneBerry Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2015

    My students are a little older than yours, but I feel like I can relate to this dilemma. In my classroom, I don't have supply buckets but rather keep different supplies separated and we only take out what we are using that day. For instance, I have plastic boxes of colored pencils and one or two students can quickly pass out the boxes of colored pencils. I have a tray of rulers that one student can carry around the room to give everyone a ruler. Sometimes I'll just set out those supplies myself, ahead of time, but it really doesn't take much class time. Besides, I actually like the opportunity for extra movement (for just 1-2 kids)... I usually have a student who just needs to get up and walk around, you know?

    In terms of teaching students how this works, I just show them the student supply center - meaning, the drawers and cabinets that contain the supplies they're allowed to use - and explain that we want to keep everything organized and in good condition so that we can easily find and use it the next time. With a clear spot for everything, this goes pretty smoothly.

    Separate thought - If you already have community buckets, what about keeping a hand-held pencil sharpener in each one? Some of them that fall open easily could create a mess, but if you had some good ones, students could manage their own sharpening easily... just brainstorming! Pencil sharpening is still an issue in my classroom, too!
     
  6. OneBerry

    OneBerry Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2015

  7. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

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    Jul 29, 2015

    TeachCafe,

    I can tell you that if you have a cup of dull and sharp pencils, and they trade out, you'd be surprised how few students do this. What they really want to do is use the pencil sharpener. When you have a "sharp" cup instead, you'd be surprised how few feel the need to switch-out pencils.

    I keep glue sticks in one tub, markers in another, and so on. It doesn't take long to take the tub out and let students get one.

    Hope that helps.

    -Rain
     
  8. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2015

    Two fifth grade teachers last year used black versions of those mini crates for desk supplies. The buckets I bought can double as center buckets on a shelf if need be.

    I like crates at each table to keep me organized and to prevent the overflowing bucket with an entire classrooms journals in that they have to sift through.

    I have an electric pencil sharpener but table ones for quick fixes isn't a bad idea.

    I have a student center on the wall when they come in for attendance check in, daily/Tuesday folders, homework turn in, assignment turn in, notes home turn in, etc. right off my room closet.
     
  9. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jul 29, 2015

    I teach 8th graders, but I also try to eliminate movement to get supplies when possible. I have baskets for each kind of supply. 9 baskets for pens, with four pens in each. 9 baskets with colored pencils (with hand sharpeners), 9 baskets with post its, or glue, etc. The baskets are numbered so each numbered group knows it's responsible for the supplies in that basket. My groups are kind of in rows, so I just take the baskets, and leave them at the head of the table, and they pass it down. Each group grabs their corresponding basket.

    They return it the same way, and I do a quick check to see everything made it back.

    Another teacher friend of mine uses group pencil boxes. She keeps them stocked, but I'm not sure how she knows if something is broken or missing.
     
  10. missalli

    missalli Companion

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    Jul 29, 2015

    Here's what I did last year and I'm planning on going again this year. Each student had one of those zippered pencil pouches. Each student was expected to have eight pencils (some students brought their own, but since I work at a high-SES school I bought scads of pencils using my tiny classroom budget). They were allowed to have a manual pencil sharpener in there also, provided it had a collector for the shavings.

    At the end of the week I collected all the pouches and sharpened all the pencils that needed sharpening (or had a student helper do it). If they still had all eight pencils, they got a little prize. That could be anything from a positive note to a sticker to a Dojo point to an eraser cap. If they were missing pencils, I replaced them (usually from my bin of Old and Busted Pencils) so that everyone started the new week with 8 pencils. Once in a while, I would have a special "contest" - if all the students in the entire group had all their pencils, that group would get an extra special prize (popsicles, popcorn). That helped cut down on pencil hoarding (Enrique might have 12 pencils, but when he found out his teammate Alonzo only had 7, he's willing to give up 1 for the greater good) and also encouraged students to bring in their own pencils.

    It WAS a lot of sharpening Friday afternoon/Monday morning if I didn't have help, but it eliminated students using my electric sharpener (which I just cannot deal with), and very few students were able to break 8 pencils in 5 days. They also took better care of them knowing they were going to be held accountable at the end of the week.
     
  11. applecore

    applecore Devotee

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    Jul 29, 2015

    Love the ideas!


    My kiddos get 2 pencils each and put in a can to be sharpened, labeled "Needs Sharpened". They swap out their pencils at the end of the day if they need to--and with permission as needed. There's no sharpening of any kind going on in my classroom during learning time. We don't allow hand sharpeners because of past safety issues---if anyone's ever read Joey Pigza, you'll understand why. LOL I sharpen a TON of pencils at the beginning of the school year to avoid having to sharpen pencils until at least Christmas break. Yep, that's a lot of pencils.

    Each student also gets a plastic "shoe box" to corral their supplies inside their desk. I've never had so many students keep a clean and organized desk until I invested in those. I require students to clean up, organize, and replenish their supplies on Fridays. I set the timer for 15 minutes before lunch and a clean/organized/replenished supplied desk gets a "fast pass"(I just tell them to line up) to line up for lunch quickly.

    I send the extra supplies back home with students once we figure out what they have brought to get the year started; parents tend to over buy. I have no room to store their supplies. I tell parents to keep this in a safe closet or space they will need to get to. Students write a "Supply Need List" on Fridays if they need to.
     
  12. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2015

    I like this. I'll be at a high SES school too and looking at the school supply list they're to have a pencil box. I hate the idea of a pencil box per student all over the table. I like a one centralized spot and not just 4 boxes taking up room and then they switch classes so them having to cart it back and forth.
     
  13. BreezyGirl

    BreezyGirl Companion

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    Jul 29, 2015

    Are they sharing a desk or do they have their own desk with the compartment inside to hold supplies?

    Each of my Grade 5 and Grade 6 will have their own desk. Inside their desk they will have pencils, eraser, sharpener, scissors, glue stick, marking pen, markers, ruler, protractor and a calculator. In addition, they will be keeping their sketching or drawing notebooks. I have decided to keep duotangs elsewhere as it can be an ordeal finding the folder if the desk is messy. :) For extra supplies, they will put them in a big ziplock and store in a file cabinet. If they need something, they need to wait until an assignment has been given. (I also have a corner in the room for basics that they can use)

    If the desks are one... I like the bucket idea in the centre of the table. I was at a school where a teacher did this and it worked great. She used a rotating basket. For less disruption, set expectations to how it will be run.
     
  14. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Jul 29, 2015

    They have tables with the cubby bins under them like this.

    [​IMG]

    But I'm not self contained so keeping stuff in there doesn't work.
    At least not to me. Anyone else want to chime in if they use pencil boxes and are departmentalized. How does it work.

    With the two classes I don't see what one can keep in there that won't get mixed into the other student who sits there.

    After the first week I'm pushing two tables together for groups of 4. The first week they desks will be desperate with just 2 until I can see personalities and learning styles and who should be at a table grouped with who.
     
  15. BreezyGirl

    BreezyGirl Companion

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    Jul 29, 2015

    Gotcha! If they are sharing with other classes it is hard to keep their own stuff in. Perhaps use pencil boxes and they take the box out? Again, setting expectations early. I do like the idea of a container on top of the desk. Include a sharpener to lessen kids getting up all the time. We know fun it is to sharpen pencils!!! :)
     
  16. smile3

    smile3 Rookie

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    Jul 30, 2015

    Great Ideas!
     
  17. *Schoolmarm*

    *Schoolmarm* Rookie

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    Aug 1, 2015

    I've always had individual desks for my students until last year. Due to a desk shortage, I had two tables and 17 desks. I didn't like that setup at all.

    I had my table kids keep their belongings in plastic shoes boxes and the desk kids used pencil bags (I have a class set) inside their desks.

    This year I am moving to tables only and am looking into having community supplies. I think I'll use a basket for pencils and a few erasers. The other supplies will be in a central place in the class for group captains to go fetch when needed. I'm feeling unsure about it all though since I haven't done it this way before. I'm sure I'll have some bugs fix and procedures to adapt along the way.

    Good thing is that kids are adaptable and like new routines.
     
  18. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Aug 2, 2015

    My kiddos get 2 pencils each and put in a can to be sharpened, labeled "Needs Sharpened". They swap out their pencils at the end of the day if they need to--and with permission as needed. There's no sharpening of any kind going on in my classroom during learning time. I do all the sharpening at the end of the day, because if I let the kids use my electric sharpener, it ends up broken. I don't let mine use the hand sharpeners (unless we are using map/colored pencils), because they make a mess, no matter how many times we go over how to use them. In my classroom, scissors, glue, and pencils are community supplies. I am self-contained, so I only have to worry about one group of kids. Each child has a zipper pencil pouch in which to keep 1 box of crayons (I store any others), PBIS "cash", erasers, etc. I also have a bucket of erasers. Each table group has a basket for the scissors, dry erase markers & glue for their table... all baskets are on a bookcase at the front of the classroom. When we need them, I'll call out a (Kagan) seat number (4's get the markers for your tables) & that child gets them that time. No fuss no muss.

    Don't forget that you need procedures not just for supplies, but also for turning in and handing out papers/work (I recommend looking up Kagan cooperative structures), lining up, walking in the hall/breezeway, entering the classroom, backpack storage, restroom use, etc.
     
  19. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Aug 3, 2015

    THIS.

    I student taught 2nd grade this past semester and never had an issue. I am using it in my classroom this year (4th).
     

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