Top Ten Teaching Essentials

There is a really exciting time right at the end of the summer holidays and just before you begin the academic year. It is time for stationary shopping. It is honestly something I really look forward too. But do better than me, don't lose all your stationary within the first week.

1) A teachers planner.

These are very handy! I know a lot of teachers get stoked about their new planner then end up not using it for the rest of the year but it can be very useful, especially during training years. Some schools give these out to each member of staff at the beginning of the year so check before you buy your own!

2) A pencil case.

It may sound obvious but when I initially started I felt about 12 thinking about buying a pencil case. Trust me when I say, the staff that are always asking for pens etc are the ones who do not have a pencil case.

3) Pens & Pencils (including board pens)

You need as many pens and pencils you can get and do not be afraid to label them! There are people everywhere that are ready to steal your pens, pencils and board pens and think its not a big deal. If you leave your pencil case in the office you best believe that a colleague is going to nick a pen or two. The amount of times I have found my marked pens in colleagues pencil cases! If you use the schools board pens, people think its okay to take yours and then you go into your next lesson without a board pen! Buy a couple of your own and label them!

Tip: If you lend a student a pen/pencil, take a belonging of theirs that they will need for the rest of the day, they too will try to steal pens.

4) Notebook

You will need a general notebook. I find mine particularly useful for training sessions for note taking, rather than using my teacher planner where you could use for planning lessons etc. It is also good for planning extra curricular clubs.

5) Hand sanitizer

I cannot stress this one enough. Whether you are primary or secondary, this is an essential. Kids spit, they grab you and you touch things with gum stuck to it. Hand sanitizer.

6) Mints/gum

You are going to be drinking coffee, working long hours, having meetings. The last thing you want is a kid saying, "er Sir, can you back up cuz your breaf stinks!" That is not what you need. Make sure you have some mints/gum on your desk to keep your breath minty fresh!

7) Deoderant

Same reasons as above. Especially if you are teaching in a practical subject.

8) Desk organiser

You will definitely need a desk organiser. If you have a line manager like mine who screams everytime they see your desk because of their OCD then this could be a life saver. You will have so much paperwork whether you are a practical or non-practical based subject. This will help just to keep organised. You don't want to be at work till 6.00pm looking for that document you swore you put on your desk but is now doomed in a pile of paper.

9) Tissues

Students will find ANY excuse to leave the classroom. I know this from personal experience. I have even had a student show me a 'Please let her leave the classroom, she is on her period' note from four months before. They will try anything. Tissues is usually the go to, "Can I go to the toilet to get some tissue please?" Then having a box of kleenex at the front of the room really does stop that nonsense!

10) Confidence

The last one is all down to you! Confidence is the most essential tool you can take to school. The students have some crazy talent of sniffing out the nervous new teachers. I have seen teachers that have been eaten alive and I am sure it is down to confidence. Once you have lost their respect it is really hard to gain it back - start as you mean to go on. Don't put up with their crap, don't fall for the little tests they will put in place (and it will be easy to spot) and don't start by trying to be their friend. Who wants a hormonal teen as their mate anyway?