Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A Magical Shopping Adventure

So.  In the middle of summer, every teacher everywhere started posting photos about amazing back to school deals on Instagram.  I remember when “Back to School Season” was in August, and I would always feel nervous that there wouldn’t be enough crayon boxes left for me at Target.  Does this shopping season feel earlier to anyone else this year? 

Anyways, I just couldn’t stop looking at those IG shopping photos.  I am a sucker for school supplies.

No, really.

When I was little, I would bypass the candy aisle at the grocery store to look at all the glorious pens.  I’m still kind of that way.  I do love pens.  But this time, I was all about the gorgeous baskets and bins that teachers were finding at Big Lots and Dollar Tree.  They’re pink and turquoise and lime green and purple and beautiful.  And you know what?  NONE WERE LEFT FOR ME WHEN I WENT TO THOSE PLACES!!!  {Insert sad face here.}  My crayon nightmares came true, in basket form. 

I did manage to score some pretty amazing deals, though!  Especially on things I didn’t realize I absolutely needed until they were staring me right in the face.  You guys know what’s up.  I literally went into Target to ONLY buy cat food, and I ended up spending way more money on my students.  My poor kitty.  But one humongous major bonus {for me anyway} is a glorious find that I…found. {Sounds weird.}  Check it out at the end of this post!

I decided to link up with Kickin’ it in Kindergarten for a fun linky party!  This one is called Teachers Be Shoppin’, which I just knew I had to join because I love the name of it so much!  I love reading blog posts like this.  I’m always wondering where teachers get such amazing things in their classrooms, so I’ll let you know where I found everything.  I’m also giving price approximations, since I know prices vary depending on location.  Unfortunately, some of the things were on sale, which may be over already, but I know there are lots of great deals everywhere right now!  I’m including some AMAZING TPT products, too!  Hopefully this will help you out in your own magical school shopping journey! 


First up: Bins, bins, and more bins:


Clear shoebox-sized bins with pink lids: Target {approx. $5.99 for a set of 5}.  Adorable chevron pencil holders: 99¢ Store {well…99¢ each}.  Green, pink, and blue milk crates: Big Lots {approx. $3.50 each}.  Black bins with gray handles: Big Lots {approx. $1.50 each}.

{P.S.  Since I couldn’t find my beloved colorful bins from Dollar Tree and Big Lots, I settled for these black bins to hold books in my classroom library.  Stay tuned for a Monday Made It post!  I’m going to make them awesome.}


Because I can never have enough storage:


This colorful guy: Big Lots {approx. $28}


I am also very indecisive when choosing folders:


Seriously, I couldn’t figure out which colors I wanted to have for each subject.  So I bought all the colors.  You do this, too…right???  Folders: Staples {On sale: 15¢ each for the first 30, but I sweet talked the guy into letting me get 60 for that price!  The rest were 50¢ each.}  Composition books (wide-ruled): Staples {On sale: 50¢ each, and may require some sweet talking if you’re buying more than 30}.


Clipboards for clipping things!


Aren’t these adorbs?  Small plastic see-thru clipboards: 99¢ Store {99¢, These are perfect for centers!}  Regular-sized paisley clipboards: Dollar Tree {99¢, These are perfect for something I haven’t even figured out yet!}


Pretty much every school supply you can imagine:


Let’s take it from the top!  Binders and pocket dividers: Staples {Less than $6 each}.  Hipsterpotamus notebook: Target {I lost the receipt!  Approx. $2-3 dollars}.  Extremely colorful Post-it notes and Paper Mate pens: Staples {On sale: approx. $10 each}.  Various stickers, bookmarks, and pencils: Target dollar section {99¢ each}.  Ticonderoga pencils: Target {approx. $6 a box, I think. But they’re the best!).  Various erasers: Target, Big Lots, 99¢ Store {approx. 99¢ each}.  Large push pins: 99¢ Store, I also saw them at Dollar Tree {99¢ per package}.  Pencil sharpeners: Big Lots {80¢ each.  I bought about 20 of the green and blue ones, but they have other colors, too!}  Crayons: Target {On sale: approx. 25-50¢.  I bought way too many to fit in this picture}.  Glue sticks: Target {approx. $2-4 per box, depending on the size}.  Steno notebooks and graph paper: 99¢ Store {99¢ each}.

Here are some close-ups, because some of the pictures are kind of hard to see:


I just had to.  My love for pens is real.


I want to write everything on Post-its this year.  Even my blog posts.


Hipsterpotamus!  I’m still laughing…


I love scented erasers!  BTW, did you know there’s a website called  I just discovered it right now!  They have a ton of school supplies.  This could be dangerous.


Ticonderoga pencils are the best ever!  {Stay tuned for a Monday Made It post on what I’m making for my students’ school supplies on the first day of school!}

And now for some TPT love! {Click on the pictures for store links!}


I am in love with my new planner/organizer by A Modern Teacher!  It’s adorable and has everything I want, and more!  A lot of teachers have been raving about the beautiful Erin Condren planners, but I do all of my planning on my computer.  I’m hoping to “take a page” from The First Grade Parade and make visual lesson plans this year!  Check out how she keeps herself organized here!

Grab Your Glow Sticks {12x12 Digital Papers for Commercial Use}

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have noticed that lately I’ve been listening to way more 80’s music than anyone should.  All of this neon goes so nicely with that!  So rad!


These math games are meant to be used as homework.  SO.  GENIUS.  My school uses math workbooks for homework, so instead I’m going to use these games as centers or Fun Friday choices!


And finally!  FINALLY!!!  My favorite thing of all!!!


Let me tell you a story.  Once upon a time, I saw this magical chevron rug on so many teacher blog posts, and it made me stop in my tracks.  Basically, it was love at first sight.  I searched everywhere trying to find where it came from, and discovered that it came from Big Lots.  My local BL has only been stocked with boooring rugs, which I expected, since most of the posts I read were from around 2012.  I looked for similar ones at other stores, too, but nothing else felt so meant to be.  Then yesterday, I randomly found a BL far from home, and there it was!  I’m so happy!  I love love LOVE it!  Oh…the end!  {This would make a great read-aloud.}

I can’t wait to set up my classroom now!  I hope you’re all having a great time setting up your rooms!  Let me know if you find anything you can’t live without this year!  Or better yet…join the linky party, too! 

Happy Teaching!



  1. Wow You've been SHOPPPPING!!!! I'll probably get there too as the summer rolls on.

    1. Good luck on your back to school shopping! :)

  2. I have been shopping since June!! Don't worry, I have the same school supy aisle issue.. Haha absolutely LOVEEE the rug! My mom bought me one very similar last night but I this one is even cuter! :X

    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one with this problem! Ha! If you want this one, keep trying Big Lots! The cashier said they get them in often! Best of luck getting ready for school! :)