Perhaps you viewed my previous posts on ways to stretch your limited dollars when creating a makerspace. Here is another tip in the series:
Food Store Clearnce Aisles - Most food stores have an area designated for slightly damaged or nearly expired items. You can really cleanup on items for your makerspace/classroom here. I recently found a $20 wipe board on a clearance for $2.50. Now there is a math problem I enjoy. Saving $18.50 - hmmm what else could I purchase with that money? Have you noticed boxes of spaghetti that might not be the first to sell due to the status of the carboard? Couldn't they still be used to make tower structures or bridges? Day-old bakery items (like brownies and cookies) still make a special treat for staff. Just consume them that day or the next. But what a bargain when priced at around $1 to $3.