What Every Teacher Needs For In-Person or Virtual Learning

Getting ready for a new school year is always exciting for teachers. It’s a fresh new start!

If you’re a brand new teacher, though, you may not be sure what supplies and tools you’ll need. Or if you’ll be starting the year teaching from home, you might be wondering what you should buy.

A plethora of school supplies -- everything from pencils to erasers to a calculator to a staple remover spread out on a gray background.
When we talk about school supplies, we tend to only think about what students need. But the truth is that teachers also need school supplies!

Regardless of whether you’ll be teaching in a classroom or teaching remotely, these teacher school supplies will help you to have a successful year!

A whiteboard with four dry erase markers and an eraser.
A whiteboard, eraser, and dry erase markers are teacher essentials!


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Pack of Dry Erase Markers  –  Or more like TEN packs! The supply closet never has enough and you will want to start the year out with a fresh stash!

Hand Pointers  – They are fun!  Be sure to label them so they do not walk off.

Giant Roll Dice  – I used these with test prep. Write the questions on the dice. Roll and answer.  You can use them with prompts too!

Magnetic Pocket Pouches  – Stick these to the board, the back of your door, or to the sides of desks.  They are great for odds and ends.

Desk Caddies  – Do your kids work in groups or teams?  These stacking caddies are a good way to portion resources to a group.

Large Pom-Poms  – Toss pom-poms to kids in a pop quiz.  Ask them a question.  The person who receives the ball, answers and then passes it back.

A teacher standing in front of a whiteboard with writing on it.
School is starting soon! Stock up now so you have classroom supplies at the ready.


Hand Sanitizer – This is genius! Using hand sanitizer bottles as restroom passes! Your students’ hands will be clean when they return from the restroom.

Pom-PomsGlue a pom-pom to the lids of your dry erase markers – you won’t have to hunt for an eraser again! (It works great for students, too!)

Plastic File Crates – Need some instant storage in your classroom? Purchase some plastic file crates and zip tie them together to create a cubby wall, perfect for backpacks and lunches or as a place to keep papers that need to go home.

Toilet Paper Tubes – Reuse toilet paper tubes and create a handy way to display worksheets so your students can just grab them as needed.

stainless steel containers filled with colored pencils and scissors and paintbrushes and rulers and many other school supplies.
Whether you’re a brand new teacher, a veteran, or somewhere in between, an organized classroom with school supplies at the ready is always welcome.

Ribbon Bookmarks – Tape a piece of ribbon to the inside back cover of each child’s notebook. That way, she can quickly and easily find her spot next time she uses the notebook. via Miss Giraffe’s Class.

Hanging Shoe Organizer – Use the space on the back of your door to store classroom supplies!

Busy Bags – Hang busy bags (independent learning bags) from a towel rack using just binder clips and binder rings. I love how all the pieces stay together, and the students can easily access them. via Small Potatoes


A girl sitting in front of a laptop computer. On the screen is a man reading a yellow book.
We can all agree that virtual teaching requires a computer and internet access. What other supplies and tools do teachers need to successfully teach from home?

Amazon Echo Dot – This is a great tool for the classroom — or for teaching at home! It will give you weather updates, play music, generate random numbers, and even provide translation services to help your ELL students. via We Are Teachers

Essential Oils Diffuser – Use peppermint oil for focus, lavender oil to calm your students, and orange oil to reduce stress and lift their moods. via We Are Teachers

Postcards – Send these free printable postcards to your students to let them know you are missing them! via Carolyn’s Creative Classroom

Conversation Cubes – These are fun to use in the classroom, especially at the beginning of the school year. They are a great way to help students get to know one another and form friendships. via Teacher Funder

Colorful Duct Tape – Duct tape is great for marking where desks and tables are supposed to be in your classroom. At the end of the day, students can easily move them back where they should be. Duck Tape has a wide variety of fun patterns and colors! via We Are Teachers


A woman wearing orange noise canceling headphones while sitting at a table and typing on her laptop.
If you’re teaching from home with your kids and pets nearby, you may find it helpful to wear noise-canceling headphones.

DIY Folding White Board – Need an inexpensive, portable whiteboard that you can use to teach anywhere? You can easily make this tri-fold whiteboard in fifteen minutes – for just $15!

Mini Whiteboard – If you don’t want to make your own whiteboard, this mini whiteboard is perfect for teaching online. Virtual teachers have found that students have an easier time seeing this small board that can be held up in front of a webcam versus a bigger wall-hanging board that’s further away. via We Are Teachers

Digital Rewards -Some virtual teachers reward their students for class participation by sending digital rewards through Class Dojo. Another way to reward students is to send small items like stickers, erasers, or sticky hands in the mail, along with a note or reward card. via Elementary Antics

Webcam – A good webcam is essential for teaching online. If your laptop or personal computer already has a decent webcam, you might still consider purchasing one to show books or model writing. via Elementary Antics

Noise-canceling Headphones – These headphones will allow you to hear your students, despite any distractions around you. Also, this pair comes with a built-in microphone, so your students will be able to hear everything you say. via We Are Teachers

Magnetic Pocket Chart – Pocket charts are so useful for teachers at the primary level. They make a colorful background for videos, and you can use them to display vocabulary, flashcards, visuals, or math fact cards. via Teacher Funder

Most of these products can be found on Amazon – and with Amazon Prime, you’ll receive your items fast with free shipping! (If you don’t have Amazon Prime yet, give it a try with this FREE trial!)

Every teacher needs an assortment of pens and flip chart paper!

Classroom Teachers: What supplies would you add to this list?

Virtual Teachers: What have you found to be must-have items for remote teaching?

Please comment below!


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