Dollar Store Deals For The Early Childhood Classroom

                 Fun Kindergarten Activities on                  a Dollar Store Budget!

If you're anything like me, you're struggling to rein in your classroom spending. With the back-to-school season fast approaching and store shelves starting to fill up with school supplies, the temptation to spend, spend, spend is everywhere! That's why I love the Dollar Tree - it satisfies my urge to shop without destroying my budget. And, there are so many ways to use the items in the classroom!

For a quick Math Center, grab a snack tray and some pompoms. You can have students sort by color, count how many of each color, and then even order them by amount! If you give them some cards with numbers written on them, they can count out that number of pompoms, working on 1-1 correspondence and number recognition. Not bad for $2 in supplies!

A fun addition to a Writing Center is this two-sided dry erase board and cute eraser! The board is blank on one side and lined on the other, so students can practice handwriting or writing spelling words or sight words!

If you're a new teacher just starting out, or someone who'd love to switch up their class theme, check out these adorable Disney decor items:
 They have Finding Dory,

Mickey Mouse,

and Good Dinosaur sets! 
There are borders, cutouts and recognition awards.

If you need an inexpensive alphabet activity, you can't beat a set of magnetic letters and images, along with a cookie sheet! Matching upper to lower case letters, letters to beginning sound pictures, or eventually creating CVC words, this is an easily differentiated activity for just $2!

One of my students' favorite things is when our Elf on the Shelf brings us science activities! I grab them up in the summer when their in stock, and save them for December. We grow a crystal tree for our Elf and then he leaves us 'magic snow" and water beads for our Sensory Center or more "magic" powder that will grow colored rock crystals. Each time he leaves us a little baggie, he leaves us a note telling us what to do, but not what the "magic" will create. We have a great time writing our predictions and making observations in our journals! Each activity is just $1!

I always pick up some large tweezers, for fine motor practice in our Sensory Center. This year I spotted these little test tubes which will be perfect for our Science Center - I plan on letting the students do basic mixing experiments in small group. I also found reusable dry erase pockets that are great for when I don't want to make a million copies of a recording sheet!

Another fun word work activity is writing letters or words on the decorative stones. The metallic Sharpies show up really well on the black river rocks, and a quick coat of clear nail polish makes sure the letters don't rub off! You can also do this with clear or colored glass gems! You can put these in a Sensory Table for students to find, or have them make CVC words and record them!

Are you excited about all of the inexpensive centers you can make now?! Well, don't run to the Dollar Tree yet, you'll especially want to check out these:

Dollar Tree has these adorable Coordinated Paper Cut Outs:

I've created FREE recording sheets for these activities!

What about a fun Picnic theme? These adorable mustard and ketchup cutouts are perfect for a fun actiity:

You can download the FREE recording sheets by clicking on the pictures!

I hope these ideas help you to get some fund centers in your classroom without breaking the bank! If you have more inexpensive center ideas, please rustle up a comment below so that we can all share!
Thank you!


Maggie's Kinder Corner said...

Dollar Tree will be my demise! LOL I love that place! I do have one tip to save tons. Remember the chair pockets I made using large oriental trading totes and bandanas? Well...I did another video update showing how you can actually use hot glue! Super fast to make, sturdy, and much cheaper than the factory maid chair pockets/seat sacks!

Anonymous said...

I found everything except the coordinated paper cut outs and I reallllllly want those!! Can you comment with the sku number so I can try to find them!

Jennifer K. said...

Here's Dollar Tree's customer service # 877-530-8733. I don't see a SKU on the package, but the upc code is 639277611710 and they're part of the "Teaching Tree Classroom Decor" line. Hope you find them!


Jennifer K. said...

@Maggie Huf
Thanks for sharing Maggie! That is a great idea! Love the no-sew version!


Unknown said...

I live a good three hour drive from any type of Dollar Store. So what do we do? We shop online of course! Hope this helps you find what you need.

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