What we end up buying -- bulletin board backing, borders,
ready-made games and puzzles, and other class learning
School supplies -- school provides pencils, pens, glue
sticks, erasers, student scissors (we get one class set and
you better keep them from year to year!), teacher staplers
and staples, teacher tape dispenser and tape, white board
markers and erasers, chalk (we have both kinds of boards in
our 31 year old school), and the older kids have
protractors and compasses (same as student scissors; save
from year to year). Photocopy paper, white only, is
provided. (You want colored? You buy!) Construction paper
in basic colors, 9x12 and 12x18. (Want a different color?
Either make do or buy your own. No cardstock is provided.)
Die-cuts are available, thanks to PTA, but they are
starting to wear out. Some large white chart paper and
manila sentence strips are available. Only a few file
folders, you get 'em while they're hot. Composition books.
Lined newsprint in various sizes. (The unlined is running
out fast and will not be replaced.) Some colored butcher
paper, and white, is available, but only about 4 colors.
Student crayons - two boxes per school year. A home-school
What I usually buy - markers in all colors. Extra dry erase
markers, especially in the "fun" colors. Sharpies. Colored
photocopy paper, though I've been lucky to get donations in
recent years. Cardstock. Desk name tags. Student name tags.
Folders for spares. Blackline masters. Materials to make my
own games. Poster board. Classroom decor and storage,
though I was fortunate to inherit a lot from a retiring
I make a list every year for donations. Every year, I am
lucky enough to get stuff donated -- hand sanitizer,
tissue, art materials like tissue paper and paper plates,
one mom brought me a big Costco pack of paper towels and a
bottle of disinfectant (and when she came in she uses it; I
get this mom again this year and I'm so fortunate that she
has another kindergartner).
FWIW, I also have a huge classroom library of books that
the kids use, and I use for supplemental literature. Every
one of those books was either bought by me, or given to me,
or I inherited from someone else. I love the friends of the
library book sale where you can fill a bag for $10. The
thrift stores in town are also favorite haunts. I sure
don't pass up the "give away" table at school where
teachers give away things that they no longer want. (I've
contributed a lot of stuff to that table, too, so it works
Hope this helps!