Saturday, August 13, 2011

My Favorite Classroom Items.....

I like lots of things.  I will share with you here a SMALL portion of the things that I thoroughly enjoy and would even go so far as to call "necessities!" 

1. Mr. Sketch Stix
I'm not the best at grading papers right away.  In fact, I would consider it a personal flaw. I'm hoping to tackle that issue this year.  These markers make it more bearable!  They're smelly, have a nice thin tip for writing, and they don't bleed through papers!  Good pens make a world of difference.  (Any teacher understands this.)

2. Velcro
I use velcro a LOT in my room.  I attach posters to walls with it, nameplates to desks, or secure anything that needs a little extra securing. 

3. Poppin Patterns!
I like bulletin board letters, especially ones in funky patterns.  I don't have a whole lot of these around but I like items that pop....Creative Teaching Press makes so many great, colorful items. I usually use their products as a guide and try to make my own stuff though (since I'm chronically poor).

4. A Great Pencil Sharpener
My first two years of teaching I didn't even know what I was missing!  My pencil sharpener was a hand-me down and duller than dull. didn't sharpen at all.  And it was loud.  *Whir*Grind*Whir* all-the-live-long-day loud.  That was my life before THIS sharpener.  I opened the box just a few weeks ago.  I plugged it in and tried sharpening a pencil!  Holy moly!  It took 3 seconds and that pencil was SHARP.  (And beautiful.) Never again will I underestimate the power of a great classroom pencil sharpener!

5. Library Pockets

I use these a lot in my classroom. Students place their Star Slips in them, I use them for my library check out system, and I use them as a place to put student's reading schedules in too (so they don't lose them!).  I like my library pockets to match my theme.  This year I went with more basic solids, since I added more STUFF to the walls.  I wanted to balance things out a bit. More on library pockets at another time!

6. Colorful Crates
I have these all over the room.  I use them mostly for storage of student items.  I have one crate for student files, but the rest are devoted to where my students turn in their D.O.T. Binders, Writers Notebooks, ELA Workbooks, and Math Workbooks.  The beauty of starting teaching within the last 3 years is that color has become very popular.  Lime Green and Hot pink are the new "hot" colors and it's easy to find anything in these colors!  Score! 

7. This Storage Cart
I'm using this this year to store my math manipulatives. It's colorful and the drawer sizes are perfect. Great colorful addition to my classroom this year!

8. Crayola Dry Erase Markers
I really like these markers!  The colors are more vivid and the line is thicker, making it easier to read when you're a student.  They're less smelly than other markers and I like the tip on them a lot more.  (They're softer I guess?) I'll be sticking with these!

9. Butterfly in a Jar

This product is one I bought this summer for my classroom!  It's an electronic butterfly that flies around in the jar when it senses movement.  I LOVE this so very much and I'm sure my kiddos will too.  Now, of course, I know the risks of putting this item in the classroom.  MAJOR distraction. But I'm an animal lover and I needed SOMETHING in my classroom that was bright and vivid (and that I had no chance of killing...)  Thankfully..there's also an off button... :D

10. Alphabet Stickers
I used these a lot this year to label items and objects around the classroom.  I do like labels but sometimes printed labels aren't practical, given the size and shape of the product.  These stickers are great--they come in a HUGE package and the font is adorable! 

That's it for now!  Stay tuned for other items I enjoy that ARE NOT teaching related! Happy Saturday! :)


  1. Apparently we were separated at birth because I too love the items on your list---I own the markers, cart, poppin letters, stickers, crates, and I velcro everything. I have been teaching a little longer(15 years!) but I am sure we must have met somewhere! :)
    Have a great year!
    Nebraska Teacher

  2. It's quite possible...although I do believe, regardless, that you have IMPECCABLE taste... ;)

  3. Could you please tell me where you bought the colorful crates or what brand they are? Thank you SO much!!