Monday, July 30, 2012

Great Deals & Under Construction

Quick post today:

I came across a few great deals that I thought I'd share with you!
Currently, Office Depot has pocket folders for .01! I've heard that teachers are able to get up to 30 of the sale items (without a $5 purchase....hint, hint), but be sure to ask the manager on duty just in case, this limit may vary from store to store.
Office Depot also has composition books for .25. This price is the lowest I've seen thus far, so I'll be sure to pick up a few of these. I plan on getting them cut in half to make Math Journals and Reading Response Journals (more on that later).

Toys R US has Crayola Crayons 4 for $1. Supposedly there is NO limit, but again, ask just to be sure.

For all of my "crafty" teachers, check with your local JoAnn Fabrics for their Teacher Appreciation weekend. My local store is offering extra savings for teachers this Friday and Saturday. This will definitely come in handy for those crate seats I have yet to make.

In other news: I'm finally getting the hang of "blogging" and KrazyKuteKinders is under construction! I'm still playing around with a few things, but I love my current theme/template! There'll be more to come soon!
Happy Shopping!

EDIT: ALL JoAnn Fabric stores will be hosting "Teacher Appreciation" next Saturday and Sunday August 11th and 12th with 25% off!!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Exciting News...

......which I will definitely tell you about once my mini-vacation ends! Plus, the news isn't set in stone and I probably won't know anything until after I report back in mid-August. I'm excited and I hope everything follows thru!! I'll check back in a few weeks.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Mini Vacation

I know that I JUST started blogging so there's no need for me to take a vacation right?? But, alas, I am. As my summer vacation is winding down, I find myself wanting to rest a little more and take care of some things that I have neglected all summer. I can't imagine how some of the other bloggers are feeling when they have to report back to work on Monday! Yep, you read it right. Some teachers/bloggers are reporting to work this Monday, July 30th. So, with that said, my posts will be few and far between. That is, at least until I head back into my classroom and begin all the fun stuff that comes with starting a new school year. I'll try to post if I see great deals and steals or if something dramatic happens in my school life. (I received a text from my principal earlier today. I've been on edge ever since) Feel free to check out some "Blogs That I Love" located on the left sidebar of my blog. I'll see you in a few weeks. Adios....for now!

Monday, July 23, 2012

All for 1, or 1 for all?

Greetings! It's been 4 days since my last post, and I have to say...I've missed being around the blogosphere. However, I needed a vacation in the worst possible way! So, I took one. Granted, it was a mini-vacation, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I'm not a swimmer, but I spent more time under water this weekend than I ever have in my entire life. A great time was had by myself as well as the other 12 people who were also there. Yes, 13 people (including myself) split between 2 lodge homes. Great times.

Now....on to the teaching stuff.
Every school year brings about new beginnings. As a teacher, we are constantly adjusting to provide the best possible environment for our students. One constant that ALWAYS remains the same in my classroom are school supplies.

Typically with supplies, I take the "community" route. Meaning when students bring in their supplies, either individually or in the school pack, I separate them myself and then as a class, we distribute all the items evenly so that each student has what they need.
 I usually ask that parents do NOT put their child's name on the supplies. This makes it easier for me to distribute. Supplies that have the students' name on them or character supplies (Spiderman, Hannah Montana, etc) are sent home.

For me and my classroom, it's always been easier to do community supplies because it ensures that each child has what they need. Our supply list usually has an abundance of each item and many items are left over. Honestly, no kindergartener needs 10 folders. 3 or 4 are enough to last the entire year. I also buy supplies that I need for my students as well, so we always have more than enough.

Last year, I had several parents disapprove my system of community supplies. The main objection I had to my community procedure was the fact that parents spent their hard earned money for THEIR child's supplies, not to supply the entire classroom. And I get it, I really really do. I teach in a low income area. Not only is our school Title 1, but so is our district. Many families receive assistance and can barely put together the funds for food and clothes, much less supplies. So they make an extra effort to ensure that their child is prepared for the school year. I can definitely understand not wanting to share supplies.

However, there are families in the same situation that simply cannot afford supplies. Their extra efforts only cover food and clothing, which means no $$ for supplies. If you have never seen the look on a 5 year olds face because they don't have supplies and their classmates do....believe me, it's heartbreaking. I buy what I can, but I also count on the students that bring supplies so that I know there's enough. Plus, sharing is caring, right??
I still plan to do the community supplies this year. Unless 99% of my parents object and complain to my administration, then for now, that's the best possible solution I have for my class.
Now for your input. How do you distribute supplies to your class? Is it all for one or one for all?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Very Very PINteresting!

Pinterest is my new favorite hobby!! I literally cannot go more than a couple of hours without checking out or searching for new ideas. Of course, the boards that I visit the most are related to classroom ideas and themes. I've gotten so many new ideas for this upcoming school year, that I probably won't have time to finish them all. Pinterest has a smorgasbord of ideas for almost anything a person can think of. Simply type in what interests you or any craft ideas you want to try and the pins will pop up! I suggest you head on over to and check it out. If you're already a member of pinterest, what boards or ideas capture your attention? Happy Pinning!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Deals and Steals

 I may get some mean looks for posting this....but the infamous "Back to School" season is upon us.

I know, I know. It's still July and some of us have only been out a few weeks because we taught summer school. I'm one of them, in fact. However, now is the perfect time to start stocking up on some of the great deals and steals that we all love.

I have been frequenting many "big box" stores to begin stocking up on some essentials and a few other things that I've been eyeing. Pinterest has given me a plethora of ideas, so I've also become a DIY-er.

A few things that I have picked up so far:

Dollar Tree

These 3 dimensional shapes will come in handy during math.
Great to use for counting and when we begin our lessons on 3D shapes.
Bought 6 packages

Pop-out letters (uppercase and lowercase) and some magnetic numbers.
Can never have too many.

I plan on having 6 groups, so I bought 3 of these so that 2 groups can share.
With all the cutting and pasting in Kindergarten, the 2 we have don't do us justice.

My Target has been really sllllloooowww about stocking their "Back to School" aisle, but I was
able to pick up a few things. A couple of pocket charts, some magnets, mini dry erase markers and erasers.
8 primary color cards for reference with my students and incentive stickers
and charts.

Judas ahem...Staples
These were purchased before I found out about the change in rewards. I just bought the bare minimum and
left it at that. No sense in spending ALL of my hard earned money.
Check out my post here if you haven't heard about the new policy.

These are just a few of the deals that that I've found so far. I'm sure the sales and goodies will increase as we get closer and closer the the beginning of school. Also, if you're an Office Depot teacher rewards member check out the website to see when your local store is hosting their "Teacher Appreciation Day". Lots of great deals then. Leave a comment to let me know where you do most of your shopping and where you find the best deals.
Happy shopping!

Monday, July 16, 2012


WARNING: this post is loooonnng and math is not my strong point so my #'s may be off a little. ______<----(Insert huge sigh here) I knew it was going to happen. For all good things must come to an end. Staples has officially changed their "teacher rewards" program to one, that at the moment, has the masses in an uproar. Last year the rewards program consisted of the following: During "Extreme Deals" ( 1 cent, 25 cent, 50 cent, etc) teachers were able to purchase a maximum of 25 items at the extreme deal price with a minimum $5 purchase. So for instance, if pocket folders were on sale for .01, teachers could get 25 of those for the extreme deal price plus the minimum $5 purchase. The total would come to $5.25 before taxes. Add to that the extra 15% discount if you had a savings pass ( savings passes cost $10 and can be used 1x per day between July and September) and lets just say that this bargain was amazing! Now imagine being able to spend $5 and get a 25 folders, packs of pencils, glues, sharpeners, etc for .01.....see where I'm going with this? A teacher could literally supply their classroom for about $10. Great deal right? We all thought so. Now if you weren't a teacher, the deals changed a little. If you're a parent, you could purchase folders at .01, but it would have been a limit of 2, plus the $5 minimum purchase. Any extra folders that you bought after the limit cost the full price (and the same worked for teachers. If we purchased more than 25 we had to pay full price for the extra). So let's say the extreme deal is .01 for folders, limit 2 and the regular price is $1. If a parent were to buy 10 folders, the first two would be .01 but the rest would be $1. So the total price for a parent would come up to $8.02 + $5 minimum purchase=$13.02 before taxes and there would be no extra 15% off (savings passes were only available to teachers). This is why teachers were SO excited about Staples "extreme deals".  How many parents do you know can afford to spend over $13 for FOLDERS?! Imagine paying that PER CHILD! Being the giving people that we are, teachers tried to pick up the slack knowing that for about $10 we could make sure that our students had everything they needed. ______<----(Insert huge sigh here) Staples changed their rewards for teachers this year. Teachers can still purchase items at the "Extreme Deal" price, but we now have the same limits as everyone else. We can still purchase up to 25, but everything after the limit is full price, we have to pay the money upfront and it will go on our rewards card. Here's the scenario: There is still a minimum $5 purchase before we can even get the extreme deals. So again, folders are .01, but the extreme deal limit is two. The regular price is $1. So if a teacher wanted to buy a class set of 25, we would get the first two folders for .01 and the other 23 would cost $1 each. Don't forget that minimum $5 purchase. Total cost for a teacher now would be $28.02 plus 15% off if you have a savings pass. This is why the masses are in an uproar.    Now for teachers, the amount over the limit price would go on to our rewards card to be used at a later date (the rewards would show up about a month later). Roughly $23 would be in rewards cash/credit to be used at Staples at a later date (subtract the $5 min purchase and the 2 folders you got for .01...that doesn't count towards rewards). I'll let that sink in for a minute ..…..................................... So yeah. Basically, we teachers have to pay full price upfront, but we get the money back a month later in rewards cash. And every teacher needs school supplies a month AFTER school has started right? Right. There's talk about boycotts, teachers are petitioning, people have emailed the President/CEO of Staples, and Staples employees are bearing the brunt of the anger. Most teachers have no idea that the rewards have changed and don't find out until they're in line checking out. Once anger ensues, the store clerks are left with baskets full of supplies to restock. But, honestly, I get why Staples changed their policy and I understand it completely...hear me out please. Many teachers AND parents abused this rewards deal and to the company, it probably seemed as though Staples lost revenue, rather than gained (overall they didn't...but I don't want to get into that). I have witnessed first hand many teachers coming in and making the minimum $5 purchase, get 25 of each extreme deal, paying, putting the items in their car and coming RIGHT back in the store to do the same thing over again. So while teachers were getting great bargains on supplies, Staples was essentially losing out on profit. Also, and I'm not sure about every store in the US, but, every Staples I went to never checked ID. If I said I was a teacher, they believed me and never questioned it. So if you were a parent and knew this.......yeah. "Back to School" was the busiest time of year for Staples and I'm sure employees and managers voiced their opinions about how they were getting "cheated" out of revenue, especially with customers making multiple transactions and let's face it...they were, during that time, just not as a whole. In my personal situation, the new Staples policy doesn't benefit me at all. Yes, I'll admit I only shopped at Staples for the extreme deals. I never abused the rewards in one day, but I did go back day after day to get that extra 15% off that I paid for. I mean, the supplies weren't for me, they were for my class and I also donated to needy families at my church. Working in a low economic area/district, it's absolutely heartbreaking to see children come to school with no supplies because their parents were scraping the bottom of the barrel to buy them decent clothes, shoes, and necessities. Since I was a teacher and could get great deals, why not help out where I could? As for me, I went out of my way to shop at Staples. The closest location to me is about 20-25 minutes away depending on traffic. However, there are several big box and brand name stores that offer teacher rewards and do price matching all within a 5 mile radius of my home. So, I definitely won't be going extra miles out of my way to purchase items from Staples.  Now after that long post, tell me how YOU feel? Do you support Staples decisions? Are you on the fence? Or are you apart of the mass that is currently in uproar?

Saturday, July 14, 2012


After much debate (mostly with myself) and tons of research, I decided to create a blog. So...Welcome! I created this blog to mostly journal my experiences and adventures that I will no doubt have during my teaching career. This seemed like the perfect time to start my blog seeing as I'm on summer vacation. I will be able to chronicle all the events that lead up to the start of my 5th year teaching! So, bear with me. I'm still learning all of the tools and tricks of the blogging trade. My first few posts may be few and far between as I get the hang of things around here. Feel free to leave a comment and also check out some of my other FAVE bloggers in the sidebar.