What Teachers REALLY Need for Their Classroom

Updated: Jun 17, 2021

Are you a new teacher looking for things a new teacher needs for their first classroom? Did you just finish your student teaching placement and want to start planning for fall? Are you returning to the classroom after a hiatus due to distance learning? Did you just get hired and now you're overwhelmed at the thought of setting up your classroom? Well, first, CONGRATULATIONS YOU WONDERFUL THING, YOU! Teaching is such a rewardingly awesome job. Now, are you ready to start planning?

This is the ultimate list of supplies you REALLY need for your first classroom. After 12 years of teaching, I think I've finally "narrowed" (it's not narrow, there's a lot you'll want to get your room running smoothly) down my list of needs and wants for the elementary classroom. Although this list is designed for elementary educators, all teachers will find the basics that get every classroom up and running. Perhaps this isn't as glamorous as you'd wish, but I am telling you, you need the basics to get up and running. Then, you can refine everything else as you grow as an educator. This list is broken into three sections (click to jump):

1. What I start EVERY year with (some items are one-time purchase)

2. Things I personally use regularly with my own classroom routines

3. Things that are nice to have.

Click here to jump to the one BIGGIE that makes my crafty teacher heart go pitter-patter!


I recommend setting up an Amazon Wish List and sharing with your friends, family, and classroom families. As you scroll, simply click each image and add to your Amazon Wish List (affiliate links included here, just FYI). Perhaps they won’t be able to help, but if they can, they usually will. The nice thing here is that there are so many different price points, that many people will be able to find something they are able to donate or contribute.

I want to make this totally clear... it is NOT your job to supply everything in your classroom, but if you are blessed with people in your life that are willing to support this undertaking, this is something you can use as a jumping off point.

Another amazing option for you is to set up a Donors Choose project and create your wish list from there. They have their own set of expectations, but it's a great option for teachers with limited classroom budgets.