Welcome to The Crazy Pre-K Classroom! Please enjoy your stay, explore my posts and join for more to come! Blessings, Christine

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Round Rock, Texas, United States
I am a wife, a mother to 2 boys, and a Christian Kindergarten Teacher. Besides spending time with my family, I enjoy sewing, scrapbooking, quilting and creating innovative, hands on lessons for my students.


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Why teach Pre-K?

Because, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Phillipians 4:13

Because, I love it and am called to it!

For my children and my husband!

Because I am me!


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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Top 10 Necessities for New Teachers (that your school probably won't buy you!) and a free teacher startup checklist!

We all know that being comfortable in your daily space is important. Having items that make you happy and are exactly what you want can help make your year go smoothly. It is also a real pain when you figure out you need something and have to beg, borrow and steal to get your lessons ready for the next day! I've been there 1000 times and now I am the teacher everyone comes to when they need something. (I guess it helps that I am a hoarder, but don't follow my lead on that end!)

     I have come up with my list of necessities that I find make my days in my classroom a whole lot smoother and I do not spend time going to the store after school or groveling at my coworkers feet! I normally make one or two large Amazon orders per year to stock up on the consumables. I try to also buy everything on prime so that my shipping is free! I also keep and eye on Amazons lightning deals in case any of my necessities come up on an extra great sale price. The following list is in no particular order of importance:

1. Day Planner/Lesson Plan Book
     Whether you choose a Daytimer, Erin Chondren, Simple Calendar, Standard Teacher plan book, or whatever you need a planner that works for you! With all of the meetings (IEP's, 504's, Ard's, teacher meetings, parent conferences, professional development and the list of meetings goes on and on) that come with teaching make sure you have a planner that will help you stay organized and is easily used.

2. Laminator/Laminate
     I only use the huge school laminator when I have an item that does not fit into the 8.5x11 pockets that go with my personal laminator. This way I do not spend my time trimming laminate for each page and for the smaller items the laminate pouches are a much easier size to handle and cut. I find that using my personal laminator saves me tons of time. I can laminate without leaving my classroom! I can take it out whenever I need to and no need to wait for another staff member to laminate if you have that restriction. I have tried multiple brands of laminate pouches and prefer the Scott brand because they allow for a larger margin around the paper and melt well into the cardstock I use. I don't truly have an issue with the other non brand pockets they just are not always big enough to allow for a good margin and sometimes leave bubbles. (I am a little OCD about my supplies!)

3. Favorite Pens in all colors
We write so much throughout the day that having pens which are comfortable in your hands and write smoothly are a must! Papermate flair and inkjoy pens are my favorite colored pens and the Uni-ball Vision pens are my favorite all purpose black pens.

4. A really, really good stapler
Whether it is for boards or just paperwork a good stapler is a must. One year I bought a cute turquoise stapler because it matched my room. Come to find out it didn't open so couldn't be used for boards and was so cheaply made that even when I was just using it for papers it was too flimsy to staple properly. I ended up chucking it in the trash and ordering myself the following stapler. I have had it for several years now and love it!

5. Scented chisel tip markers for anchor charts
I love using scented markers on my anchor charts. The kids love the novelty of it and the colors are bright.

6. Sharpies Galore
O.K. so I have an obsession with sharpies. I admit I have hundreds of them! I find they bleed through anchor charts so I don't use them on the easel but I use them almost everywhere else!


7. Fabric Scissors and Paper Trimmer
     I know, you are like fabric scissors, we don't use fabric in the classroom, but trust me you will not regret buying yourself an extra sharp pair of scissors that are sturdy and will last forever.

A decent scrapbooking paper trimmer makes cutting laminate a breeze!

8. TpT Subscription
    This one is free but if you get your Teachers Pay Teachers account set up and get familiar with the site before school starts then you will be ready to log in and search for free and priced items for your lessons. You will also get notices of sales and favorite sellers new items to your inbox if you so choose. (If you get a chance I would love to have you follow my TpT store here!)

9. Post its in all colors
     I use post it notes constantly, whether it is to write myself a reminder or for use on my laminated K,W,L charts I use them to organize information. They are great for graphic organizers like Venn Diagrams or Can, Have, Are charts etc. I made my anchor charts with my sharpies and had them laminated, now I can choose the colors for each section of my chart and write straight on the post its instead of my chart. The color distinctions also give the kids a visual separation in the graphic organizers as well.

10. Colorful Dry Erase Markers
So you have your standard 4 pack of Expo markers with black, red, blue and green which are great but I find that using a variety of different colors while teaching gives the kiddos a visual separation of the information you are presenting. These are also great in your dry erase centers for student use!

I hope you find this list of must haves helpful when getting ready for your next school year! I would love to hear what your must haves are! Below you will find a free download of my classroom startup checklist! Enjoy, Christine

Click Here to Download your Free Classroom Start-Up Checklist!

Disclaimer: These are all actual products that I use and love. I was not supplied with any free products or paid for my opinion for anything in this post. Affiliate links are included.

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Comments and Ideas are always welcome, I am always looking for new units to create for TpT!