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Five Donations to Ask For in Your Next Newsletter

As a classroom teacher, my parent newsletter always included a wish list for classroom supplies. Snacks, paper towels, disinfectant wipes, Kleenex, and other staples were asked for when needed.
Occasionally I'd throw in a big ticket item such as a new pencil sharpener, headphones, cardstock, and cross my fingers hoping someone would donate. A request for dice brought in enough to supply a Vegas casino!

Here are five ideas for items you can ask parents to donate in your next newsletter.

Old iPod/iPhone/MP3 Players

Aly from Just a Primary Girl has a great post about using old iPods for listening centers. Many schools are also asking for old smartphones to begin building their own Google Cardboard collection. I found in my own home two functioning iPhones and one iTouch from 2008 I will be using in my classroom in the new year! Most of these items have little trade-in value, so parents may be more excited about their students using them to learn! 

Old Board Games/Game Pieces

Here are some great posts all about how you can use old games and puzzles in your classroom. These are items parents might think of throwing out as they age but can be a great tool in your reading and math stations.

img via Primary Inspired Blog

Gently Used Books

This one may seem like a no-brainer, but it really can help new teachers grow their personal classroom library.  Whether you teach primary or upper grades, there just might be a family in your class that has a stash of picture books or chapter books collecting dust on a bookshelf they might love to donate.  To encourage donations, I printed labels for students to write their names on so that the students could put their name in the book before adding it to our library. 

Legos or Makerspace Toys

Now that many of your students received new toys over the holidays, some parents may be eager to purge or clean out the toy box to make room for new goodies! If your students have Makerspace or Genius Hour opportunities,  this would be a great time to ask for gently used Lego pieces or tinkering/building sets students are no longer using.

Don't have a Makerspace at your school? I had a parent donate several bags of snap blocks that we saved for indoor recess stations. The excitement on my 1st graders faces when I pulled out the blocks always made me laugh.


With a new year comes new goals and resolutions, and you may have a parent who has made a goal to be more involved with school activities.  Take this opportunity to revisit volunteer opportunities and instructions as a way to encourage parents to help out! You may have even had new families enroll recently who may be wondering how to volunteer on your campus.  From reading buddies to parents who are willing to cut out piles of laminated task cards, every minute helps! 

What are your favorite wish list items to include on your parent newsletter or teacher website?


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