Tuesday, February 22, 2011

sort of free cardstock supplies...bwahhaa

(look at my cute doggies and feel happy)

Ok in my last post I mentioned that I will not receive the 2nd half of my budget this year. There were some great comments, teachers in similar situations, teachers in ickier situations, people with good ideas for finding funds. I've found 3 ways to get more supplies in the last week that may work for you also.

1. Really look around your school....like really really look. I found a box of glue bottles in the janitors closet (what?) got the teachers who have been at the school for a long time to release some of their stockpiles (as one reader said....it's their student's who I am using the supplies for!) And most suprising of all, when I told some 7th graders who came to barrow paintbrushes for a science project that I was really low on paint they told me the science teacher was hording paint and construction paper in her room! Well that was fixed mighty quick today.

2. Call the high school art teacher....they are not going to send you the fancy stuff (acrylics paint) or even the sort of fancy stuff (oil pastels and watercolors) but they sure seem ok with sending over the half used bottles of tempera paint, crayons and Elmer's glue (and a teddy bear from $1 tree?)

3. The number one item we use in my classroom is 90lbs paper (lightweight cardstock) we use this as watercolor paper and our "good" paper for most projects. I have to buy this paper from my budget (in reams) and we had five sheets left. I was lamenting this to the school secretary who got really smart. She said that no one ever sends orders to the district print shop and as a school we have several hundred dollars of print shop credit. Last year we left $300 of print shop credit unused. If I get my copies from print shop I can request to have things printed on 90 lbs paper and not have to pay for it out of my budget. Soooo....I wrote
in the corner of a sheet of paper and sent it over to print shop with a request for 1,000 copies. Yes 1,000 copies. I should have 1,000 sheets of 90lbs cardstock in my classroom by the end of next week nice and blank on one side and pre-headed on the other side. BWAHAHAHAHA!

Ok now to get the donnors choice grant for printmaking supplies up and online and find $1,200 to buy a new kiln...that one is going to take some serious grant writing. Although I should probably wait and see if they plan to keep me next year before I got to the work of geting the school a new kiln.

Next up a really cool clay birdhouse from the send class of the clay workshop where we made the clay heads last month. Thant and the wonders of a material called Aquavar.


  1. I am sorry to hear about your situation. Sounds like you are doing a great job working through it. O love your plan for cardstock...brilliant!

  2. Kudos to you for working through all these obstacles! You seem amazingly resilient. (That photo of your pooches snuggling together is SO SWEET!)

  3. VERY clever printshop solution! Good for you!!!

  4. YOU ARE A GENIUS! This is what we are best at... being sneaky, creative, resourceful geniuses!!! Thanks for posting your process, people need to see what we really go through and how hard we work to make 'things work'! I just don't think other teachers realize or for that matter, administration, students and parents?!

  5. Great job being creative!
    Just wanted to add that my parents own a furniture store and I have gotten several FREE items from them, including tons of cardboard (large sheets), discontinued fabric samples, and packing materials. Try some stores that you may not have thought of before. They may be grateful that they don't have to pay the dumpster fee for the things you drag away!

    Good luck!!

  6. My school currently doesn't have a limit for the print shop (we call it printing services). I will be using that trick for SURE.

  7. I got a stack of almost-watercolor-grade paper from a fancy restaurant. I asked what they did with old menus and fliers and they very proudly said they recycle them ... I said "how about letting art kids re-use it first?" and voila, a legal box of lovely one-sided paper!

  8. I just ran across your ideas here and wanted to know if it would work for me with the two schools that my sons go to. I am making cards for the troops, but don't have much as far as supplies for the cards. Do you think they would have any cardstock they're not using or do know ways that a Stay At Home Mom can get supplies? Thanks!!

    If you look on my blog at http://cajunbeautysscraps.blogspot.com/
    then you'll find the Operation Write Home post where you can get more information on why I need free supplies.