The first day of school is just around the corner with many kids starting in the next few days. The cost of classroom supplies can really add up, especially if a teacher has to buy them.
In one week, Stacey Smith will have a new class of fifth graders at Copper View Elementary in Sahuarita.
She's been preparing -- and perfecting -- her classroom for more than two weeks this summer.
And it's not just time that she's spent.
"I couldn't tell you how many things in here I purchased, just because it's a lot," Smith says.
From the posters, to the room supplies, or extras like folders and pencils; she has bought nearly everything in the room.
In her 12 years of teaching, that adds up.
"I don't add them up too much, you just do it because you're a teacher and that's what you do," Smith says.
So far this year, she estimates she's spent around $200. She'll pick up more supplies over the course of the year spending anywhere between $500 and $800 annually.
But for Smith, teaching has never been about the paycheck, or the extra money coming out of her wallet for the classroom.
"Especially getting those hugs, or those high fives from the kids, that's why you teach. It's not necessarily the thank you's, but it's seeing a student that has progressed or has had difficulty and then you've gotten through to them," Smith says.
Everything in here is to motivate the students so they can succeed. That's why she teaches, and that alone, pays off.
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