schoolYou can’t escape the reality that school is back in session.  Summer clothes are marked down, book bags and dorm gear are covering the shelves, and everywhere you look you see school supplies.  Modern Parent had a great suggestion yesterday: when you’re out grabbing school supplies for your kids, why not grab a few extra to donate to your child’s school or classroom?  Supplies are usually marked down really low this time of year – it’s amazing how far a few dollars can stretch – and teachers (who are already underpaid) appreciate the extra markers, pencils and highlighters.

There are plenty of ways to maximize these awesome deals on school supplies:

Classroom Central.  Classroom Central provides students living in poverty with the school supplies they need to thrive in the classroom.  Their biggest needs include: pens, pencils, one subject composition books, markers, crayons, highlighters and rulers.  You can also help by volunteering, donating financially, or by simply linking your Harris Teeter VIC card.

Hemby Children’s Hospital or Levine Children’s Hospital.  Help brighten a stay in the hospital for a child.  School supply boxes, markers, crayons, coloring books, puzzle books, and stickers are welcomed and appreciated.

Ronald McDonald House. Ronald McDonald Houses offer a place to stay for families who have a child in the hospital, providing not only shelter and food, but love, comfort and stability.  Markers, crayons, and coloring books are a few things that can help kids who are staying there.

For more information or ideas, be sure to check out the Children’s Alliance’s Six Ways to Get School Supplies to Charlotte Children in Need.  Classroom Central also has a great list of School Supply Sales available (there’s so much that’s $1.00 or less!)  And don’t forget about stores like Toys R Us (Crayola BOGO this week), A. C. Moore (40% off Crayola products), and Michaels (Crayola Buy 1, Get 1 50% off).