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Teacher ResourcesUpcycling

The Teacher's Corner Resources Box Recycling
There are a number of things you can do with recycled boxes. Inexpensive portfolios and storage boxes are just a couple.

  1. Inexpensive Portfolios: For this project you can use any type of box that is large enough to hold the hanging file folders and is made from heavier cardboard. (I have also used slightly larger boxes, done a little cutting to them and taped them back together.) The most important thing to do is take measurements of the exact hanging files you will be using. Remember that the folder will need to clear the box and the middle of hanger will rest on the edge of the box. Once you have the boxes, you can use either wrapping paper or contact paper to cover and decorate them.
  2. Storage Boxes: The size of these boxes will depend on what you, or the students, will be putting in them. Be sure to have some wrapping or contact paper on hand to make them look fancy! You can combine several of the same size to make various compartments.

The Teacher's Corner Resources Recycled Laminate
A great way to put those scraps to good use. Used laminating film makes great overhead sheets. I simply go into a Kinko's or any other store that laminates and tell them that I am a teacher looking for used laminating film. They can usually find some pieces in their trash that I cut into 8 x 11-inch sheets. Smaller pieces of laminated paper are used for letters, numbers, dice, domino's, and playing cards. The lamination is thick and sturdy. Best of all, I am recycling.
Submitted by: Laurie Staley , a kindergarten teacher at Central Elementary School in Olathe, Kansas. This tip was published in the NEA's Weekly "Works4Me" Email list.