It’s that time of year to stock up on school stuff while everything is on sale! Even year- round homeschoolers will appreciate having a brand new set of supplies when moving up to the next grade. Get your kids involved in the planning process. Then go to the store as a family and let your children choose what they want from the wide variety of styles and themes that are available. This way they can express their individuality, and they will be more likely to enjoy using those items that they had a say in picking out.
Essential school supplies will vary depending on the type of curriculum and grade level. In general, however, if you have school-age children it’s a good idea to always have the following basic supplies on hand: dictionary, thesaurus, pencils, pencil sharpener, erasers, paperclips, stapler, scissors, clear adhesive tape, masking tape, computer, printer, ink cartridges, and paper.
Preschool to elementary students will need: pencils, crayons, pencil and crayon sharpener, eraser, washable markers, safety scissors, white glue, glue stick, colored construction paper, drawing paper, notebooks, pocket folders, lined penmanship paper, math manipulatives, chalk, lunch tote (for field trips), and magazines with colorful pictures to cut out.
Middle to High School will need: pens, mechanical pencils, colored pencils, No. 2 pencils, fine-line markers, highlighters, ruler, scientific calculator, graph paper, three-ring binders, spiral notebooks (one for each subject), lined loose-leaf paper, pocket folders, composition book, journal, calendar, wristwatch, bookbag or backpack.
You might think your teenager has outgrown the crayons, markers, and other art and craft supplies, but older children still do research projects, science fair entries, book reports, skits and plays that require visual presentations. You don’t want to find out that your supply closet is empty the night before a project is due, so keep some poster board, construction paper, and colored markers in there just in case.
One more thing – In addition to checking your inventory, this is a good time of year to have the kids test all of their glue sticks, white glue, markers, etc. to make sure these items haven’t dried out just in case they need to replaced. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of a project and finding out that something doesn’t work!
A long time ago I made a checklist of basic homeschool supplies that our family found useful, which you might want to download, print out, and adapt for your own use: http://www.knowledgehouse.info/HomeschoolSupplyList.pdf
At that time, we had one room all decked out like a little classroom (thus the chalk board, flag, bell, map, globe, etc.). It was nice for the elementary ages, but now my teens prefer to work in their own rooms. I still have the shelves full of supplies though!