Reuse Last Year's School Supplies
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How to Reuse Last Year’s School Supplies

Posted on Tuesday, August 5th, 2014 at 7:00 am
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Before you buy everything on your child's back-to-school supply list, find out what you already have at home. Reuse what you have before buying new ones.It is almost time for parents to receive the back to school supplies list from whomever their children’s new teachers will be for the upcoming school year. Many parents don’t realize that these lists do not actually require you to purchase new supplies. It is perfectly acceptable to reuse some of the school supplies from last year. Save money by using up what you already have.

Shop at Home
Dig through your children’s rooms, the junk drawers, and the place where you store art supplies. Collect up all the pencils. Take a moment to sharpen all of them. How many did you find? It might be enough to send to school with your child. Does the new list of school supplies include one of those hand-held, small, pencil sharpeners? You have one, and it works, so there is no need to purchase a brand new one.

Next, go on a hunt for crayons. Many schools require elementary school students to have a standard box of 8 crayons. Look for one of each of the following colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple (or violet), brown, and black. Put them into a resealable plastic sandwich bag. Your child now has a pack of crayons for school.

Backpacks are Durable
Unless your child is extremely rough on backpacks, it can generally be used for more than one school year. Check it for holes and make sure the straps aren’t fraying or falling apart. It may need some cleaning and freshening before it is ready for a new school year. Wipe it down with a damp washcloth. You might consider using Febreze to remove odor from an old backpack (or one that has been stored in the garage or shed all summer long).

Binders Instead of Spirals
Some students will be asked to bring a number of spiral notebooks with them to school. Often, these binders do not get completely used up. Take the old ones from last year and pull out the paper that hasn’t been written on. Cut off the extra edges to give the paper a straight edge. Put all of these stray sheets of paper into a three ring binder.

The “leftovers” from two or three spiral notebooks can equate to one brand new notebook. Use divider sheets to separate each subject from the next one. You can add more paper to it later, as needed. What about the pages from old spiral notebooks that are blank on one side? Collect them up to be used as scrap paper.

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