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Money Saving Tips for Classroom Supplies

Cheap Arts and Crafts Supplies for the Classroom

Photo by James Emery

Taxes are due on April 15th! So, to mark this money-oriented day, we’ve compiled some of your best classroom money saving techniques. We’re constantly amazed at your creativity and ingenuity when it comes to making the most out of your classroom supplies!

Perfect Paintbrushes by Megan Kay, 2nd Grade Teacher, Hamlet, North Carolina

Here’s a simple idea that will save you money. Instead of purchasing plastic paintbrushes or sponge-tipped paint tools, place cotton balls in wooden, spring-type clothespins. When dipped in paint, the cotton balls are able to cover much more area than the brushes ever could. Also, when kids are finished painting, you can just toss the cotton balls and rinse the clothespins clean for next time.

Glue Saver by Melanie, Kindergarten Teacher, Savannah, Georgia

I teach little ones and we do lots of arts and crafts activities. It is frustrating when we have to stop in the middle of an activity to unclog glue bottles. I learned last year, if you take off

Save on arts and crafts supplies for the classroom

Photo by Eric Hunsaker

the orange top of the bottle and use a Q-tip to apply Vaseline to the inside of the cap andonto the tip of the bottle itself, clogs are eliminated. The Vaseline allows the glue to drip back down into the bottle.

Paper Scraps by Debra, Kindergarten Teacher, Howard, Colorado
To help children organize pieces of scrap construction paper for reuse, I set up a portable hanging file system. I designate one file for each color paper; that way, children may easily file and locate different colored scraps. This method saves the school money and helps my children become responsible, as they are more apt to use pieces of paper that would ordinarily be thrown away.

What are some of your best classroom supply saving strategies?

Leave a comment and let us know!

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Amanda Lawson
Amanda Lawson

Great idea to use Vaseline to unclog glue bottles. This would save a whole lot of frustration on my part and my students part!


Wish I would have known about the vaseline in the glue tip a long time ago:) It will definitely be a time saver!!!!

Sherry H.
Sherry H.

Another money-saver is to purchase white "shower board" instead of the more expensive dry-erase boards. In our community, the locally-owned building supply store will even cut the board to our specifications.

Jean Thompson
Jean Thompson

Wonderful ideas with Glue and scraps! I'll share with my Kindergarten sisters.