1. First, Velcro dots are amazing and will save your life and sanity. They are so quick to use!! I especially love using dots for my adapted books.
2. However...Velcro dots are also expensive. So to save money, buy the strips of Velcro. These can be wide, so I like to cut them in half. Long and skinny is the best way to cut it. This helps make your Velcro go farther and also helps with smaller activities (like file folders) by not making it stick too well (making it difficult to easier pull off).
3. When you have long and skinny pieces, I like to put all of the Velcro pieces on the file folder (book, or whatever) horizontally and then the Velcro on the cards vertically. This makes the Velcro easier to stick (if the student doesn't place it in exactly the 'right' spot) and also doesn't make it as hard to pull off (Velcro can be strong!)
4. Cut small pieces in advance. When I have a student absent, sometimes I will give their aide the (terrible) task of cutting apart Velcro. It can only be done so long before people start to go insane, so do be nice :) but it is so helpful when putting together an activity to have the Velcro all ready to go. When cut, I keep them separate in bags labeled "hard" and "soft"
5. Designate a Velcro scissors. Velcro can get stuck on some scissors and makes the scissors impossible to use. It's the worse. However, I've found that some scissors are pretty resilient to Velcro. I haven't figured out what exactly it is, but I know these pink scissors that I got from Michael's for $2 are the best!!! (Kathy recommend Fiskars nonstick titanium scissors in case you don't have magical pink scissors like me!)
6. Goo-be-Gone is a lifesaver. When the Velcro starts to build up on your scissors (or when someone uses the wrong scissors), a dab of this stuff will make them as good as new!
7. Be consistent with your Velcro placement across your classroom. Our rule is "Hard on the card. Soft on the surface."
8. Another reason I like our 'Hard on the Card. Soft on the Surface' rule is that is allows me to use carpet squares for storing Velcro across my classroom. I even know some classrooms that have carpeted walls for this purpose! I bought rugs at the dollar store and stapled them to my walls in various areas to stick Velcro on. And then the other day I got this awesome divider made of carpet so Velcro works on it too! SCORE!
Those are carpet squares! Our rules are all on one carpet square and the money posters are on strips that I cut from a carpet square.
Our Velcro crossword puzzle fits great on our carpeted bulletin board!
I use Velcro the most on my file folders and my many adapted books, but you can find it all over my room!
Alright, what tricks and tips did I miss? Please share how you use and manage Velcro in your classroom!