School Days

Okay – I’m probably going to get a little ranty here. I’m trying to be the good mom and get the school supplies a few weeks early. Last year I sort of forgot and let me tell you – there is nothing more pathetic than watching parents scavenge over the last few packages of loose leaf at the local Target. No one looks at each other, because to make eye contact means admitting you suck as a parent. (Or indicating that you’re perfectly willing to shiv someone for that last package of 24 count crayons. Gotta be Crayola though. Not that Rose Hill bullshit.)

Anyway, I swear it must be some sort of conspiracy between the teachers and the supply packagers, because without a doubt, the teacher will want X amount of something…which is always packaged as X + 1 amount, or X-1. Which means I always end up with too many or not enough.

And while I remember always enjoying buying the new school supplies as a kid (because hey, Lisa Frank folders were the SHIT), the generic lists these days seem to take all the fun out of it. All the folders and notebooks have to be a certain color. With prongs. Without prongs. With pockets. Without pockets. And I can never find what I need in one place. If the store has folders with prongs, they’re never the right color.

Far be it for me to upset the precious balance of primary color organization methods of elementary school classrooms, though.

Plus, I have no issue with supplying my kids with the stuff they need, but clearly I’m funding the classroom as a whole as well. Something is broken in this system and I don’t know how it can be fixed.

So, to give you an idea of what’s required these days – here’s the lists:

4th grade (this list makes sense for the most part.)

1) 2 boxes of tissues.  (Classroom supplies? Teacher prefers tissues with lotion. Sorry.)
2) 8 Glue sticks
3) 4 Dozen #2 pencils (sharpened)
4) 4 Highlighters. (Which only come in packages of…3. *facepalm*)
5) 1 pencil box
6) 1 pair of scissors. (WTF happened to all the pairs of scissors I bought for him the last 3 years of school???)
7) 2 pocket plastic folders. (Eh, I think I got him paper folders. Sorry.)
8) 3 spiral notebooks – 1 subject. With holes punched
9) 2 composition notebooks
10) 1 2 inch 3-ring binder. (Fabulous. Except I had to go to Mordor to get one. Everyone only appears to stock 1.5 inch binders.)
11) 2 packages of loose leaf paper. (wide ruled, yo. Someday I’m going to buy narrow ruled and see if the universe stops.)
12) 1 package 5 tab dividers
13) 1 fine point black dry erase marker. (Except I could only find these in packages of colors. Yay for Amazon.)

So, 4th grade makes sense. 1st grade? Clearly smoking a bag of crack.

1) 18 glue sticks. (!!!! 18???)
2) 2 dozen #2 yellow sharpened pencils. (Why can’t the kids learn how to sharpen these as they need them? Like everyone else?)
3) Pencil box no bigger than 4 x 8 (Guess what, NO ONE SELLS THESE AT THIS SIZE. 5 x 8 or DIE)
4) 1 pack of thick markers (box of 8 – 10 colors)
5) 1 2-pocket RED plastic folder (with prongs)
6) 1 2-pocket BLUE plastic folder (with prongs)
7) 1 2-pocket ORANGE folder. (no prongs)
8) 1 Composition notebook (Only if you’re in classroom Y. No room assignments yet. Awesome. I buy 1.)
9) 3 boxes of 24 count crayons (3? Really?)
10) Pair of student scissors. Blunt tip. Which are only sold in packages of…2.
11) 4 Pink Pearl Erasers. Only sold in packages of 3.
12) 8 count water color set. (But if you’re in classroom X, you’ll need 2.  So…I buy 2.)
13) 2 bottles of liquid glue. 4 oz. (But only 1 bottle if you’re in classroom Y. I buy 2.)
14) 1 (4 pack) black thin line dry erase marker. (None needed for classroom X or Y, but needed for the others. I gave up and just bought a box of like 30 from Amazon.)
15) 1 bottle of hand soap.
16) 2 boxes of tissues.
17) Paper bowls. (How many? 20? 100? I don’t know.)
18) Head phones. (CD player optional).  ??? Huh? Headphones? (But not if you’re in Classroom Y. I buy headphones.)

It’s really sort of maddening. And expensive. And maddening.

But I’m done.


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