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What are the Different Types of Elementary School Supplies?

By Robin Raven
Updated May 17, 2024
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Elementary schools provide an education for children from kindergarten through fifth grade. Elementary school supplies are the necessities that children need in order to complete their coursework. The schools themselves provide some things, but parents usually need to purchase the majority of supplies for their children. A list is usually sent out a few weeks before the school year begins to allow families ample time to purchase the appropriate supplies. These may include notebooks, pens, and other tools.

A pen is one of the most important tool a child needs for completing notes, quizzes, and tests. Most teachers prefer black or blue ink, so avoid the temptation to buy the multiple colored pens that are now available. Some teachers prefer black ink only. The list given to parents and students should indicate if the teacher has a preference or requirement.

A pencil is also an important elementary school supply. It should come with an eraser, or purchase one to use in conjunction with it. Pencils are usually required for math classes. They're used in other classes when the ability to erase is needed.

Each child will need at least one pack of notebook paper, usually wide-spaced. Notebook paper often comes in wide- and narrow- or college-ruled, so parents should make sure they buy the appropriate type. Older students may sometimes be asked to get college-ruled paper, but most elementary teachers know that the penmanship development of children isn't ready for confinement.

Spiral notebooks and composition notebooks often fall on the lists of elementary school supplies. A spiral notebook allows pages to be pulled out, yet the notebook can still look complete before the paper is completely removable. A composition notebook more easily show when a page is removed, something many teachers prefer to make sure that students are turning in first attempt copies of their work.

Correction fluid is the substance that helps to cover mistakes. Many teachers require this. It helps them avoid trying to read through scribbles and scratches that students make when they mess up on an essay or test. It comes in many forms, from liquid to rub-on. Some types can be toxic and meant for adult use only, so parents should be sure to read the label carefully before giving this substance to a child.

Elementary school supplies can be fun when it comes to lunch boxes. That's a must for children who take their lunch to school with them. They come in all different colors and are often adorned with characters from pop culture, such as pop stars or television show characters.

Most children will also need a ruler. Even if the they do not yet know how to measure on it, teachers require it on their elementary school supplies lists as a tool to help students draw or write in a straight line. Compasses may be required for upper elementary school grades. Many schools also send parents a list of books that are age-appropriate and will be discussed in class.

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