This is my first year to feel the need to buy all new school supplies (i.e. my kids care enough now about getting things ‘new’ :o). What are your thoughts on buying everything new, and if so, what do you do with the old things? Obviously if markers are dried out, crayons are broken, it’s probably time to replenish them! But what about colored pencils that are half used, but still work and color? Or crayons that are still usable but are definitely not new? Do you all purchase brand new of everything each year to get your kiddos excited about starting the school year, or do you try to reuse what you have? If you buy mostly new, what do you do with your old supplies that still have some life left to them?
I reuse some things and some things I toss, and other things I get new every year. I usually toss out our crayons and get new because you can pick them up at Wal-Mart so cheaply and there is something special about a brand new pack of crayons! I reuse a lot, but like you noted, having some new things helps to create some back to school excitement! I like to get fun erasers, new notebooks, and just a few things to grab my kids interest. Honestly, I love school supplies too! I did put old but still good colored pencils in an old pencil box to keep for myself. I use the for color coding my Bible and coloring myself!
I usually buy new crayons when they’re on sale, but we have tons of crayons (and at least one unopened pack that I know of), so I probably won’t buy any this year. The only thing I can even think of that I need to get is more filler paper. Last year, I got a huge package (couple inches thick) that was pretty awesome. I told my daughter she could have free reign with it and she only used about 2/3 of it. I LOVE looking at school supplies. Since we need so little, I’ll let her pick out a couple of things she would like to have for the new school year, and see what else catches my eye.
I keep everything until it’s unusable or unnecessary. My daughter doesn’t really like to color - although she does like to draw - so our crayons will probably last forever. She hasn’t shown any interest in markers and only tolerates colored pencils. She’s more into crafts. So I think it’s a matter of what works for your own family and how much of a budget you have. You could make a “must get this” list and “get if there’s money left over” list. So, if you have the money and want to replace the colored pencisl, then do it! If not, no worries, you still have some you can use.
I put a hanging shoe organizer (with the see-through plastic pockets) on the closet door of our Learning Room. I keep pens, red pens, pencils, dry erase markers, dry erase crayons, markers, crayons, gluesticks, label maker, etc. in the pockets.
I didn’t automatically replace everything, more when we needed to and depending on the budget and what else we needed each year. There were always enough things that we needed to replace that there was plenty for the kids to get excited about. The year I remember them being the most excited was the year I held a garage sale and let them earn their own money to purchase their own supplies. (They each cleaned out their rooms and put items in the garage sale but I didn’t track individually, just gave them each a chunk of the proceeds.)
If what you have still has some life in them, consider expanding to other types of supplies (art notebooks, different kinds of papers, maybe other supplies like chalk pastels, etc…)
Could you buy them new crayons but keep the old so when their new ones break or get lost you can replace w/ the old ones? My kids like to use their school supplies for everyday artsy crafty things when we aren’t schooling and they kept loosing things or breaking them, so ive learned to keep the “used” items in a whole separate cabinet so when hey want to do stuff outside of school time they have to use their “old” stuff. I bought some large plastic pencil boxes and they work well for holding crayons, colored pencils, markers, stickers, glue sticks, etc. all their “new” supplies stay in their desks and are only for school time.
When I replace school crayons, colored pencils, etc. the old ones go into the art supplies that are available for free time. We have a school room with dedicated school supplies they aren’t allowed to use outside of school time, so we have a special stash upstairs they can use whenever.
I like to stock up on supplies during back to school time when they are least expensive. I often like to start the year with fresh new supplies, but this year I think our supplies are in good enough shape that I might get some things to keep on hand for when we need them as I think our things are in pretty good shape still.
Love all the ideas given here - purchasing only what is needed (which will still be plenty to get ‘excited’ about :o) ) and having a pile of used supplies set aside for any art work outside of school, so that we can still use up the previous years items that may have some life left to them!
My kids have never liked crayons but they love our Lyra colored pencils! I bought new sets this year because our old sets are down to nubs after 4 years. Lyras are not cheap but so worth the money. I was planning on donating our old Lyra’s to the local Waldorf-Inspired school near me. I find that if I buy good quality art supplies, I don’t need to replace them often and my kids don’t want to either!