1. DRY ERASE BOARDS
Let’s face it-dry erase boards can be expensive. But here are a few ideas on how to cut your costs:
*Double-sided dry erase boards in $1 bin at Target (usually in abundance in August/September–stock up!).
*If you’d like a class set or homeschool group, I discovered a secret in my first year of teaching. Go to your local home improvement store and ask for a sheet of shower board. They can cut it into 12×12 squares (or any dimensions you want); which will make A LOT of personal dry erase boards. The entire sheet of shower board may run you around $10-$15 dollars and makes TONS of 12×12 boards…very cheap!
*Ikea’s art easel (one side is dry erase). These only run about $15 and make a great birthday/Christmas gift for your child!
*If you want a magnetic dry erase board, it will cost you a little more. I think the one I bought for our schoolroom ran me around $20 at Target. A cheaper alternative to a magnetic dry erase board may just be a tin cookie sheet (available at most dollar stores). I think dry erase marker will work on these, too.
Here are some ideas for using your dry erase boards:
Word-Wac-Woe or other games
*As an alternative to writing on paper. I don’t know about you, but there’s a certain pack rat, who shall remain nameless, living in our house and he likes to save every. single. paper.EVER. Dry erase boards, especially the lined ones from the Target $1 bin, are a great alternative to writing on (and saving) paper. Just erase when you’re done. 🙂
Writing a Morning Message
*Writing vocabulary words before reading a book, like I did in this post.
Learning to write (this is shower board)
*I just saw this idea and added it. Check out the fun way that Krash used a dry erase board to practice his sight words (scroll down under Word Play)! We’re doing this one this week! ALuv will absolutely flip out!!
2. POST-IT NOTES
We LOVE Post-It notes, especially ALuv. Just this past week, he went into my bedroom and got rather quiet. I yelled up the stairs to inquire on his doings. He had found a stash of Post-It notes and was labeling things in his room with them. What can you say to that?? Post-It notes are just plain fun.
Here are some ideas on how to use them:
*Write one letter on each note from a word, scramble up the letters, and have your child unscramble the word.
*Make a special supply box for the writer in your child. Include some Post-It notes. Items for this box would make good stocking stuffers.
*Write a letter of the alphabet on a few sticky notes and have your child find objects around the house/classroom starting with that letter. You can do the same thing with a vowel sound (like short i). This makes for a great phonemic awareness activity!
*If you already have labels around your house/classroom, write some of the same words on Post-It notes and ask children to be word detectives and find the matching words.
*Write a note to your child and stick it in their lunchbox for school. ALuv goes to a homeschool co-op each Friday and he looks forward to reading the note (and keeping each one).
3. CLEAR, PLASTIC SLEEVES
*My absolute favorite way to use these plastic sleeves is for inserting worksheets or printables to use over and over with a dry erase marker. They are a cheap alternative to laminating! There’s not a day that goes by that we don’t use these. They usually come in large quantities, so split the box between several other mamas or teachers to cut costs.
*These also make a great way to protect important work done by children to store in a portfolio or notebook.
4. FILE FOLDERS
File folder games (here is a free site) Carson Dellosa also makes AWESOME file folder books.
*Privacy Folder: this idea goes beyond literacy, but if you staple two folders together, they can be used during assessment time. These came in handy in the classroom when I needed to assess more than one student at a time.
What are your favorite literacy tools?
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