ListenThere is just something great about shopping at Target! Something about it is just more peaceful, and it really seems cleaner - both things that are more valuable now than they have ever been.
Even more important to most educators these days is stretching a buck and saving some money! Seems like teachers are always strapped for cash. With the impact the pandemic has had on the economy, every penny counts.
There’s even a Target Teacher’s page on Facebook created by “two teachers who LOVE Target and sharing (their) great finds”: @thetargetteachers.
Whether you are trying to stock your classroom with enough school supplies so students don’t have to share, replace all of the soft surfaces like flexible seating options and plushies in your sensory corner, or set up a virtual classroom soundstage with fun decorations and props, Target has you covered!
Since the pandemic has started, many Targets have started displaying a message board positioned conveniently when customers enter that displays whether or not they have much sought after PPE and cleaning supplies in stock.
We want to share some of our favorite tips for teachers at Target and highlight some of their best features for teachers.
Target Loves Teachers
Target is offering a one-time 15% off discount on classroom supplies and essentials through August 29th for "K-12 teachers, homeschoolers, daycare/early learning educators, university or college professors, and vocational/trade/technical school teachers"!
Type “Teacher Prep Event” in the search field on their website or in the app to verify that you are a teacher (you’ll just enter the name of your school, state, and the type of school).
Field Trip Grants
Each Target store offers three $700 field trip grants for k-12 schools. Funds can go towards transportation, registration, admission, or other field strip expenses. The program, which has been around since 2007, is currently being updated so applications are not currently available. “Check back later for more details”.
Teacher & Classroom Supplies
You probably know your way around your local Target store, but many of us are trying to do as much shopping online as possible these days. Target knows that teachers love Target, and they have designed their website with that in mind.
Click on “Menu”, then “Ready for School”. Several options are displayed: “School & Office Supplies”, “At-Home Learning”, “Teacher Prep Event”, and “School List Assist”. Or, click on “Explore all”.
If you click on “Explore all” and scroll down, you will see a link for “Teacher Supplies & Decorations”.
Some have said that even though Target is a little more expensive than Wal-Mart, they would rather shop at Target because it is a better experience.
But you don’t have to sacrifice the savings!
Target is one of the few retailers that lets you stack multiple discounts, including manufacturer’s coupons
If you do not have a Target account, you will need to create one in order to optimize your savings. Don’t worry - it’s totally free, and set-up is quite easy (Step-by-step directions to “create an account”)!
Target has a user-friendly app that includes Target Circle. One of our writers has saved $864 since signing up for the Target app (it tracks the savings for you)!
Sign up in the app (or online), and a world of discounts will open up for you!
There are so many coupons in the Target app! At the time of this article, there were more than 500 coupons available. Their coupons used to be housed under “Cartwheel”, but “Circle” is SO much better.
You can browse through coupons before your shop (by category, “all”, or “for you” which highlights coupons based off of your shopping history), search for offers by keyword (click on the magnifying glass and type or say a category or brand name), or scan barcodes while you shop to see if there is a coupon for it (click on the barcode icon in the app). Notice that there are two tabs: “Items” (a list of all items your selected Target sells that fit that description - can be checked to include “in stock”) and “Target Circle” (a list of all coupons that fit that description). You can save up to 75 coupons in your “wallet”!
You will also get a Birthday discount for 5% off your entire shopping trip that you can select to apply one time during the month following your birthday.
Don’t forget to click on “Add Extra Offers” after clicking on the wallet icon for exclusive deals you may have missed.
You will get 1% cash back rewards for every purchase you make using Target Circle. Redeeming the cash back is so simple! Before checking out, just click on “Apply $_.__” in the app (after clicking the wallet icon), and it will come off the total like a coupon. You can also apply the earnings if ordering online (the option to apply Target Circle earnings will be available at checkout). It just accumulates until you use it (earnings expire year after they are earned, so don’t wait too long)!
Using Target Circle at check-out is easy! When you check out, either enter your phone number on the payment terminal/card reader or have the cashier scan the barcode found in the Target app (click the wallet icon on the bottom of the screen, then “Show my barcode”).
While these directions are targeted for in-person shopping, they can also be applied when checking out online.
An added bonus Target Circle members get is helping Target decide which nonprofits they will donate to. Each transaction in which Target Circle is used gives the user one vote to cast to influence to which local nonprofits Target will donate (only Target employees can nominate charities to be added to the list).
Target stores seems to do clearance markdowns on a regular, rotating schedule, so try visiting the store on the corresponding days to find items for your classroom (we’ve listed them upon the items most relevant to stocking your classroom):
Monday - electronics, books, baby items (translation: wipes!), and school/office supplies
Tuesday - food
Wednesday - cosmetics, furniture
Thursday - toys, decorations, housewares
Friday - hardware
In-store markdowns usually start at 30% off. After a week or two, they get bumped down to 50% off. After a couple more weeks, they usually go down to 70% percent off! The tiny number in the top, right-hand corner of the yellow clearance sticker is the percent by which the price was reduced.
Sometimes searching for the clearance items is like a scavenger hunt (including the endorphin rush from finding it). Always check the endcaps (items may not be in the right department, though)!
Target does have an online clearance section to shop from, but they don’t seem to follow a particular schedule for marking down items online, and the in-store clearance prices tend to be cheaper.
And don’t forget the Dollar Spot/Bullseye’s Playground!
Target’s $1+ aisle (usually located right by the front door) frequently has some great finds, many of which are perfect for the classroom.
In the app or on their website, search for “Target dollar spot teacher” to find great deals on items curated for teachers.
5% & 5¢ Discounts
In addition to all of these, you will receive $0.05 off for each reusable bag you use at checkout in-person and 5% off your total ticket if you pay with the Target Red Card no matter whether you shop in person or online. The Red Card can be either a credit card or a debit card linked to your bank account, regardless of the bank.