Now that you’ve brainstormed how you want to set up your Interactive Student Notebook (ISN), it is time to buy classroom supplies! (I just LOVE buying school supplies!!!) These can be different for anyone, but in case you need some inspiration…
Organizers – Before you start buying any supplies, you need to brainstorm how you want students to access the supplies. My students sit in groups, so each group has their own small tub. I’ve thought about the idea of buying a sterilite tower, but they’re a bit more expensive. Some teachers keep their supplies in separate bins for students to only pick up what they need from day-to-day. A quick search of Pinterest will give you lots of inspiration for organization!
Highlighters – We used these DAILY to provide emphasis within our work, follow a train of thought, or highlight the use of a specific rule/formula. Did I mention students love highlighting? They do!
You can usually get a 12-pack of Sharpie highlighters at Walmart during back-to-school time for $5, but I also found the same 12-pack on Amazon for $5.19.
Glue sticks – I use TONS of glue sticks for my ISNs. We are always gluing (or regluing) something in! I like glue sticks better than white glue – no mess – and they’re way cheaper than double sided tape.
Back-to-school time at Walmart is a great time to stock up on glue sticks. Oh, and by the way, buying the 2-packs is cheaper than the larger packs. (So yes, I’m the crazy lady with a Walmart cart full of 2-packs of glue sticks.)
Rulers – These are especially helpful when setting up the table of contents, but can be used any time students need to draw a straight line.
I just buy the wooden ones for 25¢ a piece from Walmart.
Scissors – If you use foldables or do any kind of activity where students need to cut, these are a must! Be sure to get one for every student, because waiting around on students to cut will most definitely test your patience.
I ordered mine from Amazon, here is a 12-pack of kids scissors for $15.
Pink Erasers – This one might not be a basic for you all, but my high school students always needed erasers. It was so much easier to have one or two in their group tubs than it was to wait to borrow someone else’s!
Like the rulers, just buy them from Walmart: 50¢ for a pair.
Colored Pencils / Markers – I bought a bunch of these my first year of teaching, but I found I never actually used them. Highlighters were superior for a lot of our uses because they were more vibrant and didn’t fully cover the writing beneath. But if you need them, go for it!
Tape – Again, I bought a few roles of double sided tape my first year of teaching thinking that would be less messy and more efficient than glue sticks. However, it ran out way too quickly, was far more expensive, and wasn’t as forgiving as glue sticks. It will CRACK YOU UP how many students glue things in wrong; with glue sticks, you just peel it off and glue again!
*Whiteboards – I know these last three have nothing to do with ISNs… but I just love whiteboards so I had to put them on the list. Read more in my post Why Whiteboards?
*Expo Markers – Of course you need these for your whiteboards. Buy them at Walmart during back-to-school sales, but be sure to buy the 4-packs (usually $2.50) – you guessed it – they’re cheaper that way!
*Cloth Erasers – I just buy some black fleece from the local fabric store and cut it into little squares. These are so much better than tissues, and when they get dirty, just take them home and throw them in the wash!
Are there more supplies that you use for Interactive Student Notebooks? Have you tried supplies that really didn’t work out? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below!