Are you going broke trying to fill your treasure box? Here are 10 ideas of FREE items to put in your treasure box that are sure to please your students, while helping your wallet.
1. No Homework Passes – What kid doesn’t want to get out of homework? These are easy enough to type up and print out, or write on an index card. The kids won’t care what they look like, as long as they get out of their homework!
2. Lunch with the Teacher Certificate – Even older kids like one on one time with their teacher, as long as they aren’t in trouble. Give them a printed or written certificate that allows them to sit and have a private lunch conversation with you.
3. Printable Coloring Sheets – Rather than buy coloring books, use a website like this one, print a bunch of coloring sheets. You can either staple a few together, or give students an individual sheet, but either way, students get a chance to color, and most kids love that!
4. List of Super Secret Websites – Kids love the internet, but they normally stick with one or two sites that they know. Give them a list of “secret sites” which will be new to them. Need some good suggestions for websites? Use my ikeepbookmarks site, or check back on Wednesdays for our weekly website suggestion.
5. Promotional Pens – You know the pens (or notepads or keychains or frisbees) that you get free at workshops or festivals? I’ve always used these to stock my treasure box. The kids don’t care what’s written on it, and hey, they’re free!
6. “Fun” Worksheets – Printable word searches, mazes, and puzzles work just the same as coloring sheets (but sometimes you can even make them educational!) I copy some of these right from our math and reading schema and others I print from online from websites like this one.
7. Pass for a FREE Center – My kids LOVE a chance to slack when they’re supposed to be working, so I make little certificates that get them one free center rotation, where they can sit, color, relax, (anything but disturb others) while they are supposed to be working.
8. Printable Calendars – Using Microsoft Publisher, you can easily print blank calendars and staple them together to make a year’s calendar where students can write down each other’s birthdays and “important events”.
9. How to Directions for Making Paper Airplanes – My kids adore folding up paper airplanes. I found that gives them directions on how to make tons of different planes, and they love to pull these directions from the treasure box.
10. A Picture with the Class Pet – We don’t have a real class pet. But I have a Blue Fish stuffed animal, and the kids love to have their picture taken with them. I then post their picture on the class blog and send it to their parents. In the age of digital photography, this is a completely FREE endeavor!
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