25 Must-Haves for a Kindergarten Classroom

As you’re getting ready to set up your classroom, you might be overwhelmed with thinking about all the things you need to have in your classroom. 

But don’t stress. 
 The main thing your classroom needs is YOU! 

Students need a happy and excited teacher who is eager to help them explore and grow as learners. All of these other things are great to have and make teaching easier, but if you don’t have them all to start off with, don’t get discouraged. It takes time to accumulate supplies and perfect the procedures that make your classroom run. 

25 Must-Haves for a Kindergarten Classroom

So here we go! My list of the 

Top 25 Must-Haves for a Kindergarten Classroom

1.  An Organized & Inviting Space - You do not need an elaborate classroom theme, but your space does need to look welcoming. Do be aware of overdecorating! Too much on the walls or hanging from ceilings can be overwhelming for many students. Leave some “white space”.

2.  A Classroom Library full of Great Picture Books - For you to read aloud and for students to have easy access to.

3.  Pocket Charts - Pocket charts are great way to display things for all students to see, use them to sort cards during lessons, and play fun review games!

4.  Name Tags - Not just for the students to wear while you learn their names, but their names should be labeled on everything they use in the classroom. (Their name should always be written using the correct upper and lowercase letters.)

5.  Activities Students Can Complete Independently - Any kind of building materials like blocks, hashtag blocks, connecting disks, or Visual Discrimination Activities. These are great for Soft Starts, Morning Tubs or inside recess.

6.  A Great Pencil Sharpener - You will be sharpening a lot of pencils! This is the one I have in my classroom right now..

7. Pointers - These are great for you to be able to point at things on your wall. This way you aren’t standing so close to what you are showing and blocking the view of some students. Also, students love to play ‘teacher” as they use pointers to find letters, or read words around the room. These can be store-bought or home-made!

8.  Mailboxes or Cubbies - For students to collect their work during the day. Some teachers use organizers like this one, or these plastic sorting trays, like these

9.  Multiple Alphabet Lines/Charts - You want easy access to these so no matter where a student is sitting, they can see the alphabet clearly.

10.  Student Journals - Composition books work better than spiral bound notebooks. The papers don’t tear out as easily and you don’t have to worry about the spirals catching on each other. You might like to have at least one for Writing, one for Math, and one for Science/Social Studies.

11.  Large Carpet or Open Floor Space - A space where your whole class can come sit together. Use this space for class meetings, circle time, read aloud, whole group teaching, etc.

12. Classroom Calendar - Calendars can be tricky for Kindergarteners to understand, but the exposure to it is important. Calendar time is a great time to not only go over the day’s date, but also review the months of the year, the weather, counting the number of days you’ve been in school, reviewing colors, shapes, etc.

13.  Small Group Table - A rainbow-shaped table is great, but really any space where you can meet one-on-one or with small groups of students will work to give individualized instruction.

14.  Music & a Bluetooth Speaker - to play classical music while working or to have dance parties

15.  YouTube Videos - Jack Hartmann has awesome educational videos and Koo Koo Kanga Roo is always a class favorite for movement breaks.

16.  Fine Motor Activities - Kindergarteners need lots of time to work on building their fine motor skills so they can properly control a pencil.

17.  Chart Paper - To make anchor charts, class graphs, etc.

18.  Scented Markers - It's a lot more fun to write on the chart paper with scented markers! (And any other Flair Pens or InkJoys that make you happy!)

19.  Expo Markers - To use on white boards and laminated activities so they can be used over & over again.

20.  Storage Baskets - Use for center activities, supplies, etc.

21.  Literacy and Math Centers - Students need center activities they can complete without much help from the teacher so you can be meeting with your small groups during this time. (Most of my activities on TPT are great for Literacy Centers & Math Centers!)

22.  Positive Affirmations & Growth Mindset Books - You can choose a positive affirmation to focus on each week to help ease anxiety and build confidence. Students love repeating the affirmation of the week and listening to growth mindset books to see how the characters handle various situations.

23.  Stickers - Students love getting stickers as small rewards!

24.  Clipboards - One for every student. They love to use these when working on the floor and are a must when completing Write Around the Room activities!

25.  Take-Home Folders - Students need something to take their work home in and this will also serve as a communication tool between you and the parents.

This basic list is meant to be a starting off point, and as you discover your teaching style, you’ll find more, or even different, things that you prefer for your classroom. But hopefully this list gives you some ideas to begin creating your own amazing learning environment, that’s ready to welcome in the newest group of eager Kindergarteners. 

Have an amazing year!

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