Wednesday, August 22, 2012


"Mr. McGhee, what kind of supplies do we need for this class?"

I get asked this a lot, and my normal answer is, "Pens, paper, hi-lighters, brain." However, that's not very specific, and (truth be told) I normally get asked this as I'm walking to or from one place or another, deep in thought and totally unprepared to deal with human beings in a rational manner.

Here are the supplies you actually will need as soon as possible in the course of this school year:

Each student should have:
  • A large (1 ½ or 2 inch) 3-ring binder for class notes, handouts, etc. 
    • (you will not be required to hand in this notebook as you may be required in other classes, so save money here and split this binder with another class)
  • Tab separators for sections in the binder 
    • (notes, handouts, drafts, etc)
  • 3x5 inch note cards 
    • (400 will carry you to the end of the year if you can get them on sale)
  •  A box or other containment system for the note cards 
    • (a quart-sized Ziploc bag is mighty economic; just sayin'...)
  • Three highlighters of different colors 
    • (no preference, just three different colors)
  • Pens (black or blue ink only), pencils, and plenty of loose leaf notebook paper for notes and writing assignments

The following items are optional, but it would be a good idea to have:
  • A good college dictionary 
  • A style manual that contains the guidelines for MLA and APA 
    • (for example, A Writer’s Reference by Diana Hacker contains formatting and grammar guides for writing academic papers)
  • A pocket calendar or appointment planner 
    • (again, not exclusive to this class, so put all of your classes' assignments in this)
The good news is that there really isn't anything terribly esoteric in my supply list, and odds are you were already planning to pick this stuff up in the first place.