School supplies that teachers acquire for students
Tips for Teachers and Classroom Resources

10 Supplies Teachers Can’t Live Without

By Ashley Previte

The smell of a fresh new notebook. The satisfying glide of a new gel pen. You know you’re a school supply junkie. And it’s okay — we’re in the same boat.

Here’s a list of the 10 ultimate supplies teachers should never live without!

1. Sticky notes — all colors shapes and sizes

What can’t teachers do with these self-sticking, little wonders? Write on them, print on them, stick them here, stick them there. Endless possibilities. Endless. 

2. Clipboards

Like little portable desks, every teacher needs their own collection of clipboards. Group work, flexible seating, and math centers flourish as kids can write their answers without the need of their desk — or making those irritating holes with their pencils. 

3. Dry erase markers

Whiteboards demand them, but dry erase markers can be used all throughout the classroom as well. Combined with mini-boards or whiteboard tape, students can practice their skills. Teachers can write notices on the windows of their classroom doors. Notes of encouragement and inspiration can be written on student desks during that hectic testing season. Any nonporous surface that needs your attention can benefit from these erasable dreams. So write on!

4. Clorox wipes

Okay, so technically you’re probably not supposed to have these, but most of you do. And why wouldn’t you? Germs can be anywhere…and everywhere. And these handy little germ killers are great for lunchtime, snack time, or that messy milk spill on the table. 

5. Washi tape

Add color and flair to your classroom with washi tape. Use the patterns and polka dots to decorate pencil holders, binder clips, and dreary filing cabinets. Use multiple colors to differentiate group sticks. Coordinate supplies, folders, and bins for easy cleanup. Colorful and fun, washi tape is a great way to make organization pretty.

6. Address labels

Not everyone gets a fancy label maker, and you know what — not everyone needs one! Use simple address labels to proudly announce your ownership of books, clarify the contents of that bin or binder, and label homework trays. 

7. Adhesive velcro

In the 1940s, George de Mestral invented velcro — and thank goodness he did. Its uses expand far beyond the replacement of shoelaces. Velcro with adhesive backing provides countless opportunities for teachers to organize and manage their classrooms. Use velcro strips to stick dry erase markers to the whiteboard — making them easy to find and harder for little ones to grab. Use them for matching games, spelling activities, and more! 

8. A wireless doorbell

With changeable chimes, you’ll be able to give direction while saving your voice. Use this to signal students to quiet down, move to the next task, or line up for specials. Relatively inexpensive, you’ll find it invaluable. 

9. Salt and pepper shakers for glitter

Custodians around the world swear that glitter was invented by the devil. Help their sanity, as well as your own, by streamlining the glitter process. Using a few different salt and pepper shakers allows students to craft with sparkle and pizzaz while keeping the mess to a minimum. 

10. Colored pens

Gone are the days of marking mistakes only in red ink. Now it’s about purple and pink, green, and orange. Use the rainbow to assess your student work. Color code your grading: grammar mistakes in pink, spelling in purple, structure errors in blue. Grade beyond that fearful red check. Make it fun!

So go ahead and cruise those school supply aisles and don’t be afraid to fill your shopping baskets with those much needed — and wanted — teacher supplies. Because really: Sorry, not sorry. 

Ashley is an award-winning copywriter and content expert with more than a decade of proven results for national and local clients. From brainstorming high-end conceptual content to styling sentences that engage and convert, she’s got a knack for shattering the status quo. When she’s not in full-on writing mode, she’s hanging out with her rascal of a puppy and discussing the plausibility of unicorns with her 8-year-old daughter.

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