There are many families out there who are unable to afford the additional expense of school supplies. Fortunately, the “Bag It Forward” Program sponsored by Elmer’s Back to School at Walmart is able to assist those in need!
When fall rolls around I usually get a little wistful when the big yellow school bus drives down my street but doesn’t stop at my door any longer, now that I’m an empty nestor. My daughters have graduated college, and my grandkids are in pre-school.
My youngest daughter is an Early Intervention Associate and currently finishing up her Masters degree in Rehabilitation and Disabilities Studies with a concentration in Pediatrics and Developmental Disabilities.
Most people are aware that budgets everywhere are being cut – household, state, municipal, corporate and sadly, education and classroom budgets.
Teachers and schools are relying on the families of it’s students to provide supplies for classrooms. This also holds true for my daughter’s position as an in-home counselor for a non-profit Birth-to-Three program.
I was given the opportunity through the Collective Bias forum that I’m a member of, to shop and purchase school and educational supplies to donate to children and educators for this coming school year.
My daughter and I shopped together this past Sunday, and the shopping trip provided me a first-hand look into my daughter’s chosen profession.
I created my first Whrrl story. I hope you’ll take the time to take a peek at it!
As my daughter and I wandered the isles in Walmart, she kept the specific needs of her clients in mind:
While shopping I decided to pick out certain educational toy items that I believe will help my young students grow and develop in multiple ways. I chose Playdoh as an item to help my students learn their colors as well as develop creativity. Playdoh is a toy that is used often because we can create a task analysis to help the children learn to play with Playdoh, and it can also be used as a reinforcer for the children.
Another educational toy item that I picked out were 2 toy dinosaurs because not only do children enjoy playing with the dinosaurs, but they can also be used to teach children actions with objects, such as making the dinosaur walk; hop; and roar.
I picked out a set of matchbox cars and trucks to help develop actions with objects as well because many children with special needs are incapable of driving a car back and fourth, or creating the sound beep beep. These toys assist the children with developing functional play skills which are important in preschool and their daily lives.
One of the toys I picked out comes with a shape sorter and nesting cups. This is perfect for developing shape discrimination and object manipulation. The nesting cups also assist with teaching the children different attributes such as big versus little.
I also chose crayons, construction paper, and Elmer’s glue to provide an arts and crafts lessons. Coloring is important in a child’s life and it is also great to teach a child how to cut paper along a line to develop fine motor skills, and gluing the paper together with Elmer’s creates excitement for the project, as well as creativity. This also provides a time for the children to become familiar with many different art projects such as gluing glitter, seeds, paper, and other materials for children who have sensory disorders.
Some other products I chose to buy were stickers to reinforce the children for their great work in order to maintain the child’s attention it is important to reinforce.
I also chose some fun learning tools such as a Lego truck, which came with larger Lego blocks for the children to develop and work on muscle and gross motor coordination by connecting the Legos. The truck acts as a reinforcer for the child to place the Legos in and drive around once they have completed the task.
I also chose foam letters that connect because they can double as a puzzle to complete as well as an alphabet lesson. They are very creative to work with and can be used to introduce colors to the children.
I picked out many toys that I feel will be extremely educational and helpful to my young students and many of the toys can double for more than one lesson. This was a great opportunity to provide me with more educational materials that will benefit my young students and help to provide a new and exciting learning environment. They will be able to work on functional play skills, fine motor tasks, gross motor tasks and arts and crafts.
Please take the challenge, and if you’re able to purchase school supplies in preparation for the new school year, perhaps you can place a few extra items in your cart to buy and help a family or classroom in need so that all students have access to the supplies necessary for a positive educational experience.
For More Information Visit: www.bagitforward.org
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