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  • Daniel Silver

Useless School Supplies

TW: Constant back pain, jokes that don’t hit the mark, and tons of wasted money that could have been spent on bake sales


Welcome back to school! As we all know, a new school year brings even more crippling debt after spending far too much money on a bunch of overpriced school supplies that you will never use! This trend is really getting out of hand. You have been tricked by your teachers to waste tons of money on useless school supplies like these, and I don’t know how we keep falling for it.


TI-30X IIS Scientific Calculator ($17.99)


This is mostly for all the middle schoolers reading this article: these calculators are a waste. Yes, mine got me through 7th and 8th grade math (barely,) but at the end of the day, you’re going to need a graphing calculator anyway, so why buy this? Lots of functions on the graphing calculator may not be useful in 7th grade, but it will be a life saver in the long run (as a bonus, it will also give you PTSD!) You can also use the money you just saved to buy something from Burger King, or you can be smart with your money. The choice is yours!).


Crayola Colored Pencils 24ct ($6.99)


When was the last time that you have ever truly needed to use your own colored pencils during a class? It’s been a while, hasn’t it? But let’s say that you actually use your own colored pencils. How nice must it be to use those beauties about five times over the course of 9-10 months! “Oh, I use my colored pencils every week!” said absolutely no one ever. If you ever need colored pencils, there’s always that one kid with the 100-pack, so don’t sweat it.


Elmer’s Glue 1ct ($1.99)


Read colored pencils above.


A binder for literally every class ($5.99 per)


I cannot stress this enough: YOU DO NOT NEED FIVE OR SIX BINDERS! I see all of the seniors carrying a computer and occasionally a notebook, and then the middle schoolers, 7th graders in particular, who carry the equivalent of a hippopotamus on their back to and from class. You think you’re a superhero, but you’re actually just on a super fast track to chronic back pain before the age of twenty! Just group your classes together. It’s really helpful! Congrats, you just saved yourself another eighteen bucks!


High School Planner ($18.99)


Planners would not be on this list about five years ago, but with the emergence of Google Classroom, they have faded into irrelevancy. When asked about their opinion on some of these items, an anonymous 9th grader quipped, “What even is a planner?” Unless you like wasting your precious money, why would you spend 19 dollars for this? It really hurts my brain almost as much as the brain freeze from the milkshake you can buy from Shake Shack with that saved money!


Textbooks (free for the most part, I guess)


This isn’t about saving your precious money; this is about saving your precious spine. Please, please just use a PDF!!!! This doesn’t save you any cash right now, but it will save your back, which has been in absolute agony since the day you came here. #JusticeForSpines!


Pens and pencils ($2.99 10ct, $4.99 10ct)


Finally, we have pens and pencils. You may be asking yourself, “Is this guy stupid?” Possibly, but I have my reasons. You can always ask the random person — I mean friend – who sits next to you for a pen or pencil. Let me walk you through what you have to say. “Do you have a pen?” you ask. “Yeah, here you go,” your friend says. And as soon as the bell rings, run.

Don’t worry, your friend won’t be mad. For him or her, it’s only a writing utensil, but for you, it’s a treasure. The other route you could go is borrowing from your teacher. Of course, you have to return the pen/pencil at the end of class (don’t be that guy,) but it will last you a good 55 minutes. That’s a lot of time! Just cycle through those two options the whole year, and you won’t have to spend a dime on writing utensils. That’s, like, super great.


In total, you just saved $71.91! You can afford to take a 58 dollar flight from JFK to Chicago with Spirit Airlines and get a Little Caesars deep dish pizza while you’re there! Or just stick to Shake Shack’s milkshakes if you plan on wasting money on a pencil or two.


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