Genius School Supply List for Kindergarten & Beyond


School Supply Lists for Kindergarten and More!

When I changed from a kindergarten teacher to a special to a 6th grade classroom teacher, I had to sit down and convert my school supply list for kindergarten to a 6th grade school supply list.  

Sounds easy but there’s more pressure than one would think.  

As summer draws to a close, back to school time gears up and school supply lists pop up. 

The hustle and bustle of a new school year starts with school supply lists across the grade levels. 

As a teacher who has been in every grade level from kindergarten through 8th grade, I’ve established quite a collection of supply lists. 

Every list has its similarities but as the grades go up important changes happen. 

Back to school time is a crazy whorol wind for teachers and families. 

Having an organized, rockin’ supply list is a breath of fresh air.  As a teacher, I feel planned and ready for the perfect school year. 

For families, it’s a way to help their students get ready for another year of learning and adventures. 

I have many friends who say it’s their favorite time of the year, but, seriously, I hang out with a lot of teachers! 

Not sure what to add to your teacher supply list or what to get for your child? 

I have school supply lists on top of school supply lists to comb through for hours…or at least minutes.  

So if you are looking for a 6th grade school supply list, and a school supply list for kindergarten, or any other grade, I’ve got you covered!

Want to have an editable set of School Supply Lists but don’t have the time to make them? No problem! Click here to check out the set Caroline uses.

What are Basic School Supplies

No matter if I teach preschool or high school, there are some items on the school supply list that are a must.  The list below shows up on any school supply list I write.

  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Folders
  • Backpack

Pro-Teacher Tip for School Supply List for Kindergarten & More

If you aren’t sure that you really need one box of tissues from each kid (well, you’re probably wrong but I digress), then ask for the boys to bring disinfectant wipes and the girls to bring tissues. 

If that’s still too much for your storage room, then divide the class list into three chunks by last names. 

See the picture below for an example of this. 

Using this strategy can really help families out so they aren’t burdened with all the items on a teacher’s want list. 

Dividing and conquering the list is a win-win for families and teachers. 

If you think that’s a genius idea (well, thank you very much!), but you, as the teacher, have already finalized your list, I have a plan for you! 

Of course, I do because I’m here for you!!!  I find a teacher or other teachers in the building and trade supplies. 

This is great not just at the beginning of the year but throughout the school when supplies are dwindling. 

Most teachers are happy to trade supplies and some are even gracious enough to hand them over with no trade. 

Beware though: I once asked for tissue boxes from a teacher friend and had boxes of fluff flying through the air. 

I do try to be careful what I wish for.  Luckily, I have a thick head so only the cardboard boxes were dented.

Optional School Supply List Items

Next, I like to add school supply list items that are usually found on most lists but change as the school years go up. 

Technology advancements also can cause this to change.  For instance, a handle of years ago, some classes had secondary students bring usb memory sticks. 

With Google Drive and other internet-based data storage hubs, these have fallen out of favor on most school supply lists. 

So, I try to keep up to date on the latest changes and what saves the most amount of time.

Read Carefully the School Supply Lists

  • Headphones or earbuds
  • Binders
  • Colored pencils
  • USB mouse

Some schools request backpacks with no wheels and others are asking for clear bags. 

In my kindergarten teaching days, I asked for transparent backpacks. 

This was SO helpful to see if kids had notes and other important items for me that they wouldn’t always remember to turn in. 

For some schools, a see through backpack is used for safety reasons and helps school staff staff screen for weapons.  

As a teacher, I like to bold important facts in the school supply lists. 

Life will go on if the supplies aren’t exactly what my teacher brain had in mind. 

But I do love when everything is just perfect and matchy-matchy. 

Other school supplies that many teachers are picky about are brands. 

Crayola markers and crayons are a big preference of mine. 

I have one teacher in my building who will only use Ticonderoga pencils. 

A few can handle the colorful graphics on pencils. 

Personally, I don’t care. 

If my students are writing and working, I give out high fives or atleast air high fives. 

Regardless, I am detailed and explicit when writing my school supply lists.

Save Your School Supply Lists

Date each school year list and save them so you can go back and review them. 

While I usually request the same materials each year, there is definitely a bit of flex and movement as the years change.

When I first started teaching, I never asked families to send in headphones or earbuds. 

Now that’s on my list every year. 

I even have a few families who will donate extras so I can have them stashed for those who break, lose, or sabotage their own pair. 

To make sure I am getting everything for my class on the school supply list, I have to organize. 

I save all of my files electronically in folders.  I start with a grade level folder and then add a school year folder within that. 

Each supply list is labeled with the same title with the exception of the school year changing at the beginning. 

I like to open the past year’s school supply list, save it as the incoming school year, and then edit it to my liking. 

Some years I might not need any more folders, but other years hand sanitizer might be a big need.  (I’m looking at you 2020-2021 school year!) 

While my classroom supply lists often are pretty much the same, things do come and go depending on what’s in my storage cabinet. 

Having an easy to access file of school supply lists makes sure that I am always at the top of your game and don’t leave any essentials off.  

Seriously, I have no desire to sit down each year and try to remember what I put on my school supply list for kindergarten or 6th grade school supply list.

Spy on Your Teacher Besties

We all know those rock star teachers who have everything going on. 

Spy on their supply lists or, better yet, ask them for a copy. 

Add and adjust to your list if you see essentials you’ve forgotten so you can join the teacher rock star hall of fame. 

I have a teacher friend who forgot to add paper to her school supply list one year. 

Her supply cabinet was out of stock and she ended up begging for paper and buying her own. 

I traded my school supply lists with my teaching partners so they catch any mistakes like that. 

Teachers spend enough money on their classrooms the way it is!

School Supply List Extras

With a pandemic that has wrapped around the lives of everyone on the globe, I have come to find that expecting the unexpected is important. 

School supply lists are definitely included in this motto. 

As the years change, consider what is needed. 

Before the school year 2020-21, I had never even thought of including cloth and disposable masks on my lists. 

Hand sanitizer usually made the cut but not gallons of it like I requested last year. 

I’ve always been the teacher who keeps community supplies for her students.  Doing this makes life easier in the classroom and usually cuts down on everyone’s cost. 

If I already have a collection of 30 scissors I certainly wasn’t going to ask parents to buy one for their child. 

Until COVID-19 that is. 

Community supplies weren’t allowed so I had to revamp my list.

Ask Politely For Extras and Donations

There are definitely items that I need that don’t go on the school supply lists at the beginning of the year. 

Snacks are a big one and so are sensory tools. 

I’ll often include these on my monthly calendar to families and ask them to donate if they are able. 

Some stores also donate. 

Lowe’s has donated planting supplies and even lumber for classroom projects to myself and teachers I worked with. 

Local stores have donated classroom supplies and we even have a free teacher store that stock piles donations from paper to classroom furniture. 

If you have one in your area, you know how amazing this is.

Supplies for Special Needs

Every now and then I get a student who has a dietary restriction, a health concern, or something else that needs special attention. 

When that happens, I reach out to the family and ask what they’d like to send in and offer suggestions if they need some. 

This is usually a certain kind of snack, extra clothes, or a calming tool. 

Families have been great helping out in this area and most have expressed their appreciation for making sure their student’s needs are being met.

What’s on Your Back to School Supply List?

Let me know what’s on your back to school supply list for kindergarten and beyond!  

This year I’m focused on a 3rd grade school supply list!  

No matter what grade I’m rolling into, I’d love to update mine lists to add all the amazing things you stocked up on in your classroom.  

Drop me a note below.

Want to have an editable set of School Supply Lists but don’t have the time to make them? No problem! Click here to check out the set Caroline uses.

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