Intellectual Nourishment

The nice part about living in a small town is that when you don't know what you are doing, someone else does.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Tips for a Cheaper School Year

By Rachel Campbell
Once again, school has begun much to the dismay of many a child. The only thing more expensive than shopping for school clothes is shopping for school supplies. Do you find yourself with a teenager who wants something as unique as their personality? Of course, but that will cost extra, unless you employ some frugal genius…
Use those extra scrapbook supplies.
Scrapbook cardstock is a wonderful thing. It can be used for matting photos on a page, throwing together a cute gift, or, in this case, help your teenager express their individuality.
Tip #1: Making stylish flash cards.
Whether it be English vocabulary words or a foreign language course, flash cards are helpful studying tools for any age. A standard 12”x12” page will make thirty six 2”x2” flash cards. Use a trendy pattern and the rest is history. 2”x2” a little small for your needs? Make them the size you need.
Tip #2: Use scraps to decorate book covers.
Plain, economical (not to mention recycled) brown paper bag covers can be blinged out to your child’s delight with a few extra scrapbook embellishments or left over scraps. The bag cover is already sturdy and the more flair that is added to it, the stronger it gets. Let your child use their imaginations and creativity to express themselves on their paper bag canvas. One thing is for sure; no one else will have the exact same thing.
Find what can be reused.
Tip #1:
Recycle those binders!
Lets face it, every year the average household throws away at least three to five
binders. Sure, some of those binders really are toast, but a few are salvageable. Minor rips and tears can be patched up with a little bit (or a lot) of duct tape, which is rather fashionable right now and it comes in all sizes and colors at your local hardware store.
Tip #2: Resuscitate last years backpack.
Scrap material, beads, ribbon, and thread can all be used to pump new life into a beat up backpack. You may have to man the sewing machine for the major problems, like reattaching that strap, but then let your children do the work. Get a couple of designs off the internet and let them try their hands at embroidery. Does your child like to paint? Supply them with a bottle of fabric paint or permanent markers.
Help them stay organized.
Tip #1:
Tile corkboard is your friend.
Many home improvement stores sell inexpensive corkboard tiling. What better way to keep your child organized than to buy one tile for each child? They can decorate it with their names and such, then hang all of them in a well-trafficked area of the house. Post reminders, chores, notes, permission slips and other important papers there so they won’t get lost.
Tip #2: Check out online sources.
Websites like has loads of ideas about your back to school needs. From little tissue holders to stylish, homemade portable art studios, this site can inspire your creative side. For interesting ways to jazz up your clothes and accessories, check out Most of the projects on this website are easy, chic, and inexpensive. Happy hunting!

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