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Tidy, Cost-Effective Glue Usage

Found In: cleanup, art supplies, equipment & supplies

I find that first-graders and glue don’t always mix well. Here is an idea that saves money, prevents over-application, and gives students responsibility for their supplies.

I refill three large school glue bottles periodically. From these, students fill plastic lids from milk containers. I usually provide one for every two students at a table. To prevent mess, students put the lids on recyclable, used paper. To apply glue, children use little plastic sticks from cheese and cracker packs. They save the sticks from recess snacks and lunches and have even enlisted students in other classes to save theirs. I have had students collect sticks and lids for several years, so I have enough to use for a week without washing them.

When gluing is finished, one child from each table puts the lids and sticks in a plastic gallon container of water. The container has a large hole cut in the side but the handle remains, and students can carry it to the sink to wash it out. Students are responsible for washing the lids periodically and refilling the container with water. They like taking care of these supplies. It gives active children a job away from the work table, and also provides a job for a student who is finished with other work! Everyone wins!


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