Congratulations, you’ve landed your first teaching job! It’s crazy to think that just a short while ago I was googling “new teacher interview questions” and finishing up my classes.
I vividly remember when I was first offered my teaching job, I bought everything I saw on Instagram. However, when I put it all in my empty classroom, I quickly realized that I bought a lot of unnecessary stuff and I’m missing the important items. To prevent other new teachers from doing the same, I put together a new teacher’s guide to shopping on Amazon.
New Teacher Tip
My first big tip for new teachers who are shopping for their first classroom is to find out what your school has.
Don’t even think about filling that Amazon cart with “new teacher must haves” and teacher goodies. This is important because many schools provide you with at least some supplies, such as Expo markers, pencils, magnets, etc.
If you’re like most teachers, you’ll spend a decent amount of your new teacher salary in your classroom. Invest your money into things that will make your life and your student’s lives better.
So, what exactly do you need for your classroom? Keep reading for my New Teacher’s Guide to Shopping on Amazon.
A New Teacher’s Guide to Shopping for their First Classroom
- A personal laminator – I’m not kidding. This thing is a lifesaver. As a new teacher, you will need to laminate almost everything. Otherwise, you’re doubling your efforts and remaking items year after year. I have to warn you though… a laminating addiction is real.
- Laminating Sheets – Full disclosure… I’ve never tried anything but Scotch laminating sheets. Amazon frequently has them on sale and they work great.
- Colored File Folders – This is an item that your school may or may not provide. I use these for my student portfolios as well as filing important paperwork. Amazon has a wide variety of colors to choose from and you can store them in a crate from Walmart or any filing system of your choosing!
- Your Favorite Colored Pens – Colorful pens are a
must haveteacher supply. Flair Pens can make even the grumpiest teacher happy. They are perfect for grading and writing notes. The color possibilities are also endless. Once you buy both types…let me know… are you team flair pen or team ink joy?
- Books – Filling up your classroom library takes time. It took me about three years to get my library in a good place. A well-stocked classroom library has various genres and reading levels. I organize my library by genre using bins from the Dollar Tree.
If you’re a new teacher at a Title 1 school, definitely take advantage of First Book Marketplace. They sell books at a fraction of the cost. However, if you’re not at a Title 1 school, Amazon is a great place to buy books to stock up on your classroom library. A big difference between a new teacher vs experienced teacher is your classroom library. It may look slim compared to veteran teachers, but I promise it will grow quicker than you think. Also, utilize Scholastic Reading Club. When students order books using
Decorating Your First Classroom
The final component of my new teacher’s guide to shopping on Amazon focuses on what supplies you need to decorate your classroom. Later on, you’ll likely need classroom storage and cute items for your desk. For now, let’s focus on the basics and as you grow as a teacher you’ll realize what items you want to make you a more effective first year teacher.
- Mounting Tape – If your school is anything like mine, you’ll have a lot of brick or concrete walls. I owe my life to Scotch for making this mounting tape. It sticks to almost any service, but it’s easy to remove if you have to.
- Glue Dots – Glue dots are fantastic for hanging up artwork and decorations on your hallway bulletin boards. Throughout the year, I take pictures of my students and hang them up using Glue Dots.
- Fadeless Bulletin Board Paper – Fadeless bulletin board paper is the way to go. No one has time to switch faded paper throughout the year. Some teachers suggest using tablecloths; however, I’ve always had a great experience with fadeless paper rolls. The rolls are huge so there’s plenty of paper for mistakes or multiple bulletin boards. They also come in cute patterns, such as
- Bulletin Board Borders – Last but not least, Amazon has great borders for bulletin boards. I used to buy my borders from Lakeshore and the Dollar Tree, but I felt like I was spending so much money or running out before my bulletin boards were done. Now I buy a colored or polka dot borders from Amazon and don’t think twice about it. The best part… they arrive in one day.
My Advice for First Year Teachers
I hope this “New Teacher’s Guide” was helpful in starting your first classroom. I truly wish you the best of luck! Every teacher’s first year was challenging. You’re learning new things and trying to remember what you were taught in college all while managing 20-30 children. Please don’t forget that these students need you. My number one piece of advice for new teachers is “If you give it your all and love them with all you got then there’s no way you can fail.” If you need anything or have any questions, you can check out my other new teacher’s guides and please don’t ever hesitate to reach out.
With love, Ashley
Ashley at Pencils and Playgrounds is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.