If your school is already into the Box Tops for Education game, then you’ll for sure want to read on to learn how to boost your collection efforts so that you’re earning as much as possible through this program!
Because this program can be so lucrative if managed correctly, follow these tips to make sure you’re getting as much as possible to maximize the earnings:
How to Collect
Put collection boxes everywhere! Make sure to put them in strategic high traffic areas where people like to be involved and contribute to school betterment. This really should be evvvvvvrywhere, but that’s a post for another day, perhaps on another blog… Remember, if you don’t ask, the answer is already no, so you have nothing to lose by asking!
Where to Put Collection Bins
Location, location, location! Exactly where you put the collection containers totally does matter! Here’s where I suggest trying to get a bin located:
In each classroom in the school
This is a no-brainer! Teachers are busy, so make it easy for kids to bring in the labels and toss them in the bin. Parents and community volunteers that help out in the classroom will also have a visual reminder to save the labels too.
School main office/lobby area
The main office of the school is another high traffic area that you should definitely have a collection box in to make it easy for parents to drop off labels. Also, this saves the school secretary from having the labels clutter up their office. The labels have a home, making it easy for the Box Top coordinator to collect and begin counting. At different times, we’ve had a simple manila envelope tacked onto the bulletin board in the main entrance that was cryptically labeled “Box Tops” in big black lettering so there’s no doubt about what should go inside. It was usually stuffed full, no matter how often it was emptied!
Board of Education main office
Ask if you can put a bin at the receptionists desk in the main office of the Board of Education. This is an often overlooked area of opportunity!
But what if there are other schools in the district that also collect Box Tops? Easy! Split the Box Tops collected from the BOE with the other schools.
Another opportunity is often at City Hall and/or Community Center, so don’t be shy about asking to get a collection bin at both of these locations. Again, if there is more than one school in the city that participates in the Box Top program, you can share the label wealth.
YMCA, other community organizations
Quite often community organizations such as the YMCA and houses of worship are more than happy to support their area schools. YMCAs pull in people of a wide age range, so you’ll more than likely be able to get Box Tops from adults who are buying Box Top products already and are happy to contribute to the cause that so greatly benefits the schools in their neighborhood!
Ask grandparents, and other relatives, neighbors and friends to collect them
Most people who don’t have school aged children don’t know about the program and think nothing of tossing a package with the label still attached! I know what you’re thinking- don’t they know that’s essentiallythrowing money away! No, they sure don’t! School them on the details and ask for them to save them for you. Explain just how quickly they add up!
Ideas for collecting:
A Box Tops mail box!
This monster will adorably eat up the Box Tops!
Snag small baskets from the dollar store or make them out of oatmeal canisters. Send home ziplock bags with a a label asking for the bag to be returned with labeled by a certain date each month. You can remove the labels, then send back the bag for the next months’ collection.
A great incentive can go a long way when it comes to bringing in the prized pink rectangles! Here are a few fun ideas for no or low cost prizes:
- Be principal for a day
- Class pizza /ice cream/ popsicles
- Winning class gets to wear a hat
- Small prizes from the dollar store
- Tattoo party
- Extra recess
- Pajama day
- Dance party (for every student who brings in a certain amount)
Create monthly challenges, or if that’s too much, how about a challenge the month before the bi-annual submissions are due?
My group has found success with promoting year round collection, and we don’t stop asking for the labels after the March 1 submission deadline. There are lots of labels to be earned throughout the Summer months and it’s an easy thing parents can do to contribute to the group’s earnings.
Ideas for contests
- Challenge another school. The principal of the school with the lower amount of labels collected has to wear spirit wear from the winning school.
- Teacher challenge! Teacher who brings in the most box tops get a gift certificate.
- Class challenges
- Grade level challenges
Whatever you decide to do, make sure you’re having fun with it!
Ways to publicize
Once you have the collections bins positioned, you gotta promote the heck of of the collection effort! Here are some ideas for how to do just that:
- Send flyers/collection sheets home regularly.
- Social Media posts: Facebook, Twitter, etc. Posts with pictures and not just text tend to be more widely seen!
- Newsletter reminders- the school’s, your parent group’s and maybe even your city’s electronic newsletter are all great avenues to explore!
- Get the teachers to help out- in one of my kid’s school, the money earned from the Box Tops directly funds the mini grants we give out twice a year. So teachers definitely have skin in the game and are more than happy to help publicize and remind parents about the collection effort!
More Fundraising Help
If you’re looking to expand your group’s fundraising efforts beyond Box Tops and really take things to the next level, then the Fabulous Success Kit is just the ticket! It goes through the entire fundraising process, from selection to what to do in the days leading up to, and after order pick up to ensure fantastic fundraising success!