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Keep School Supplies Simple And Practical

August 12, 2013
By HEATHER ZIEGLER - Associate City Editor , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

WHEELING -When students cross the threshold into the 2013-14 school year, those backpacks will be filled with everything but the kitchen sink.

Gone are the days of fountain pens, loose leaf paper and a book satchel. Today students are more likely to be carrying scientific calculators, laptop computers, iPads and computer tablets into the classroom. And the standard book bag is replaced by a sturdy backpack and a rolling book bag.

Many classes no longer utilize textbooks. Instead, Whiteboards and computer programs are the learning tools at the front of the classroom.

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Students at West Liberty Elementary School utilize a variety of school supplies, from colored pencils to highlighters, to complete an art project.

That doesn't mean the basic tools for learning have been forgotten. Retailers throughout the Ohio Valley have posted the school supplies lists for the various schools and grade levels to help parents in their back-to-school purchases.

Teachers and schools may vary in their list of school supply suggestions or demands. However, according to, sticking to the basics and skipping the frills is economical and eliminates competition among students.

For elementary through high school students, GreatSchools recommends keeping to the basic pencils and handheld pencil sharpener with a top that collects the shavings.

Also, any brand of colored pencils will do, and the same goes for crayons. And if the list calls for eight or 16 crayons, do not send your child to school with 24 or larger packs. Too many frills can cause competition in the classroom.

The same goes for erasers and ballpoint pens. Keep it simple and practical. Even with computers at their every turn, students will always need spiral-bound notebooks and ballpoint pens. Folders of various colors (teachers usually indicate colors and how many of each), highlighters and markers, a box or zip pouch to store items, glue sticks, ruler, scissors and binders are all necessary for today's classroom.

For the older students, additional supplies include a ruler with English and metric measurements; a three-ring binder, three-hole punch, an assignment notebook, a calendar, combination locks for school lockers, a calculator and protractor, and computer-related items such as a flashdrive, as specified by each school. It's also practical to have Scotch tape, a stapler and Post-it notes on hand.

Check you local retailers for complete lists of school supplies for your particular school.

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