7 Teacher Essentials for a Well Organized Classroom

After teaching for 17 years, I have a short list of teacher essentials, and they aren't sticky notes! This post shares teacher must haves you may overlook.

After teaching for 17 years, I have a short list of teacher essentials, and they aren’t sticky notes! Teachers need more than just office/classroom supplies. Teachers have to be on the ball every day for their students. Over the years, I have learned to be on my game I need to be organized and comfortable. 

Teacher Essentials #1: Large and small insulated cups

You need a large and small insulated cups. We know teachers are tied to their classroom and academic schedule. It is important to stay hydrated. The reasons you need these cups, are they do not “sweat” and they keep the temperature of your drink. Teachers walk around and put their cups down everywhere. The worst thing is to go to grab your cup and it has “sweat” all over your papers. Your organized copies are wet! It’s frustrating and can affect students with sensory sensitivities. This leads to the other big reason for an insulated cup, it keeps the temperature. When you do find your cup, it stinks that your ice water has melted and become warm or when your coffee or tea has become lukewarm or even cold. Using insulated cups, you can avoid these two big issues. 

Teacher Essentials #2: Big Lunchbox

Every teacher needs a wide base lunchbox. The best lunchbox is one that allows your take-out containers or Tupperware lay flat on the bottom of the lunchnox. Teachers have limited time during lunch. There isn’t time to clean up spills in their lunchboxes. 

Teacher Essentials #3: Teacher Bag

A sturdy tote bag is a must-have! Every teacher needs a bag that is completely dedicated to school. Tote bookbags and many diaper bags are the best kind of teacher bags. They are padded which is great for laptops. Totes don’t need to be too wide, so your notebooks and papers stay standing up and don’t become disorganized and smashed. 

Having a teacher bag saves you time. It’s easy to pack and unpack. Everything has its place, whether you are going home for the night or going to a meeting (planned or last minute) you are ready to go. 

With 17 years of teaching experience, this is by far the best bag I have ever had for teaching.

Teacher Essentials #4: Lanyard

A teacher’s lanyard could be their most important item. Your lanyard should have your badge, school keys, and a whistle. For a teacher, not having their lanyard is like showing up to work with no shoes. You can’t get in the building or your classroom. 

As teachers, we are always moving around our classroom. It is important to have the right length lanyard so it doesn’t get stuck on the edge of your desk or table or interferes with your interactive/white boards while teaching. The correct length for you will stop you from taking it off and leaving it around your classroom!

Teacher Essentials #5: Favorite Pens

Flair, erasable, and ink joy pens are a teacher’s best friend. Each type of pen has a purpose! Find the pens you like the best! Always have backup packets at home and school. Nobody likes to switch colors when their pen runs out mid-writing. 

Teacher Essentials #6: Pencil Pouch

You must have somewhere to store your favorite pens. Pencil pouches are the easiest way to keep your pens together and make sure you always have them when you need them. Always keep at least one pencil, sharpie, and highlighter in your pencil pouch with all your pens!  Pencil pouches are great for meetings, your work bag, and to use around your own classroom. 

Teacher must have #7: Easy snacks

Keep snacks in your classroom and your teacher’s bag. You never know when a meeting runs over and you don’t have time to eat breakfast or lunch. Sometimes a snack is all you need for a pick-me-up.

These must-haves are time-savers and stress reducers. It’s important to invest in these items that make your teacher life easier and happier. 

Check out the these tips on self care for teachers.

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