At Bear Creek Elementary in St. Petersburg, kindergartners are learning about bears on the hunt. “They’re hunting for food,” teacher Lora Atwater tells a small group gathered at a table.

And when it comes to school supplies, students and teachers also know a lot about hunting.

“So, when we send a page home, I have students that come back and say, ‘Mrs. Atwater, I couldn’t do this page because I didn’t have scissors or I didn’t have glue or I don’t even have a pencil,’” explains the veteran teacher.

Just down the hall in a 2nd grade classroom, Brittany Brinson is all about positivity. “I like your story idea and I like your story idea too,” she tells two students gathered around her.

And Brinson is also positive she loves her job. “I love that I get to mold students,” she says.

But teaching does come with a cost. Each year, Brinson spends her own money on school supplies, because parents just can't afford them.

“Sometimes after buying school clothes and registration fees for after-school care and things like that--there's not a lot of money left over for school supplies,” says Brinson.

That’s a problem in most Bay Area schools and that means teachers must spend hundreds of dollars of their own money on supplies.

That’s why 10News is partnering with Sam's Club and Grow Financial to collect school supplies. Just buy some extras and donate at your local Sam’s Club, Grow Financial branches or at the 10News Studios-11450 Gandy Boulevard, St. Petersburg.

In late August, 10News will box up the supplies and deliver more than 400 Teacher's Toolboxes to classrooms serving low-income students.

Binders, crayons, tissues, folders, paper, pens—everything will help. And don’t forget the pencils; Brinson says they go fast. “It’s almost like the children are eating them—but they’re not,” she says with a laugh.

The Teacher’s Toolbox school supply drive runs through August 13th.


Sam's Club

  • 300 N. Cattlemen Rd Sarasota, Fl 34232
  • 3530 Lakeland Highlands Rd, Lakeland, FL 33803
  • 10385 Big Bend Road, Riverview, FL 33578
  • 13360 Cortez Blvd, Brooksville, FL 34613
  • 27727 State Road 56, Wesley Chapel, FL 33543
  • 1725 34th Street North, St. Pete, FL 33713
  • 7001 Park Blvd, St Petersburg, FL 33781
  • 15835 N Dale Mabry Ave, Tampa, FL 33618
  • 2021 Brandon Blvd W, Brandon, FL 33511
  • 2575 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd, Clearwater, FL 33765
  • 4600 North Road 98, Lakeland, FL 33809
  • 4330 US HWY 19 N, New Port Richey, FL 34652
  • 5135 S. Dale Mabry Ave., Tampa, FL 33611
  • 5300 30th St E, Bradenton, FL 34203

Grow Financial locations

  • Busch Boulevard, Busch Boulevard 5250 East Busch Boulevard Tampa FL 33617 Bloomingdale, 604 E Bloomingdale, Brandon FL 33511
  • Brandon 1009 Providence Rd, Brandon FL 33511
  • Carrollwood, 13305 N Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa FL 33618
  • Centre Point Commons, 4018 14th St. West (US 41), Bradenton FL 34205
  • Clearwater, 2474 SR 580, Clearwater FL 33761
  • Downtown, 404 N. Tampa Street, Tampa FL 33602
  • Gandy, 4502 W Gandy Blvd, Tampa FL 33611
  • Hyde Park, 315 South Boulevard, Tampa FL 33606
  • Lakeland, 2645 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland, FL 33803
  • Largo, 10801 Starkey Rd Ste 103, Largo FL 33777
  • Lutz, 17679 N. Dale Mabry Hwy, Lutz FL 33548
  • Lakewood Ranch, 11008 Arcade Boulevard, Bradenton FL 34211
  • Main Base Office, 2418 Florida Keys Ave, Bldg 102, Macdill AFB FL 33621
  • Mariner Commons 4122 Mariner Blvd, Spring Hill FL 34609, New Tampa 17315
  • Dona Michelle Drive, Tampa FL 33647 Pasco 6121 SR 54, New Port Richey FL 34652
  • Pinellas Park, 6900 Park Boulevard, Pinellas Park FL 33781
  • St. Petersburg, 2600 Dr. MLK St N, Ste 100, St Petersburg FL 33704
  • Sheldon Road, 8314 Sheldon Road, Tampa Fl 33615 Wesley Chapel, 2579 Bruce B Downs Boulevard, Wesley Chapel, FL 33544
  • Headquarters, 9927 Delaney Lake Drive, Tampa, FL 33619
  • Gulf to Bay, FL, 2768 Gulf To Bay Blvd, Clearwater, FL 33759