After being thrown into distance learning in the spring, we, like many of you, found that we needed to either purchase or replenish some homeschool supplies. Our schooling starts next week, and I’ve been thinking about which items were most helpful for us.
We’re doing a mix of remote learning and homeschool with our kids this year. Here are the home education supplies I’m making sure to have on hand that will be useful for both forms of learning. I hope this homeschool supply list is helpful for you, as well. These also make wonderful educational Christmas gifts!
This post with our favorite home education resources contains affiliate links, but all opinions are 100% my own. That means I earn a small commission if you purchase through my link, but doesn’t change your price.
Homeschool Supplies: Our Favorite Home Education Resources
Speaking of pencils, I’m a little obsessed with this pencil sharpener. Like, if I had to rank my favorite homeschool supplies, this would probably be number one.
An electric pencil sharpener is so much easier and more consistent than the little handheld ones and this one is worth every penny of the $20 I paid for it. We’ve had it for nearly 3 years and it has been one of the most used items in our craft/homework area. It sharpens pencils perfectly (and has different width settings), is easy to empty, and lasts forever. There’s a reason it has almost 10,000 5-star reviews.
This was seriously one of my kids’ favorite and most used educational Christmas gifts!
This map is a great basic for any home or classroom. The colors are vibrant, and the laminated version keeps it looking nice for a long while. We also have this United States map, where we hang up National Park postcards with yarn lines to each park we’ve visited.
We’ve had this globe for several years and we love it. It’s definitely one of the most useful homeschool supplies when we’re discussing a new country to find where it is and to get a more accurate visual of how far it is from other places. Plus, the interactive talking portion is wonderful for kiddos to spend time learning on their own. It’s easy to use with a touch pen, and plays things like fun facts, the national anthem, and more.
I love having a wide variety of colored pencil colors accessible. They’re great for everything from art projects to coloring in parts of a flower for a science lesson to making an outline for a writing assignment.
These particular colored pencils are my very favorites – they write so smoothly, have beautiful, vibrant colors, and last a long time. They’re also sturdier than the soft core version from the same brand (though those are terrific for fine art).
Is it weird to have a pencil preference? Because I totally do. It seems that all normal pencils should be about the same, but this brand is my favorite by far. They sharpen so nicely and last so long – they have a really sturdy graphite. And these fatter pencils by the same brand are perfect for toddler hands. Just plain essential home education resources!
There’s just something so fun about magnifying an everyday object! I love this magnifying glass because it’s huge and sturdy. It’s perfect for investigating bugs and plants, examining fingerprints, or discussing scale.
Another great way to magnify everyday objects and really hone in on things found in nature. So much of elementary school science is about observation and asking questions, and a microscope makes that so much more fun.
Another basic that’s useful for labeling, worksheets, and activities. I like the thin tip on these, and that they’re washable – a must, especially when a toddler will be joining in, as well. And markers are definitely one of those things that’s worth avoiding the off-brand. Definitely an essential to add to your homeschool supply list.
This basic compass is so great for math assignments and art projects. A useful and sturdy basic, and this inexpensive set even comes with a protractor. (And if your kids get even more into circle art, we LOVE this activity!)
Another basic necessity for math work and projects. I prefer sturdy wooden ones for homeschool supplies that won’t bend – this 3 pack is great for everyone to have their own.
While I absolutely believe you can educate your children without a dedicated space for schooling, I do appreciate having a corner set aside for work and crafts. It makes it easier to keep things contained, to focus when we’re there, and also to clean up at the end. We’ve had this table and these chairs in that space for four years and they’ve held up so well.
I also personally prefer to have a full-sized table even for kids, as opposed to a small kid table. This way, it grows with them and it’s easy to spread out schoolwork and projects. And the chairs are sturdy and wipe down easily – a must for any homeschool space!
Always good to have a few sets of inexpensive child scissors around. I always like to keep a great grownup pair handy, too!
I love having a few of these fine tip Sharpies on hand for labeling.
Another important basic. I like this dispenser because it’s sturdy and doesn’t scoot all around when you’re trying to tear off a piece.
It has been surprisingly useful having a scale around. It’s great when comparing items and making hypotheses. This one is inexpensive, works well, and is also really useful in the kitchen as well as with our homeschool supplies!
Another great basic that’s really helpful with staying organized. I like having a few three-ring binders available to keep track of papers and assignments. It’s so much easier to find stuff when it has holes punched and is in a binder instead of just shoved in a paper folder. Don’t forget to add a few dividers to keep things neat. I also appreciate having a single-hole punch for projects.
We like having a whole row of these containers hanging up for all of our various homeschool supplies – markers, scissors, etc. Keeps everything neat and tidy but easily accessible. I prefer this to putting supplies in drawers or bins because then they’re in plain sight and get used a lot more for creative projects!
Gotta have these as part of your homeschool supply list!
Useful for checking the time and also teaching it. I love how bright and fun this one is. We have it in our big kids’ room, but I also think it would be perfect in a school area!
This is a useful little tool to have on hand. It’s great for providing a visual for how long to do a task, or for timing quizzes and assignments. One of my favorite home education resources!
We were super fortunate that our school provided Chromebooks to each student last year for distance learning. They were the same devices they used in class, which made the transition fairly seamless.
This year, since we’re homeschooling a couple of our kiddos, I knew it would be fairly difficult to have them all share the family computer for their various assignments. So we decided to purchase Chromebooks for our older two to do their assignments. We have fairly strict usage rules, but they’ve been SO helpful for things like Khan Academy, writing assignments, and typing practice.
Along the lines of devices, it’s been really useful to have a couple of tablets (we have this one and this one). As much as we love physical books, I have to admit that I really appreciate the ease of my kids finishing one book and immediately being able to find and start reading another with our library’s digital collection. Plus, since we have cards at several library systems, we can often find a digital copy much more quickly than a physical copy.
Finally, having a tablet makes it so much easier for my kids to play audiobooks during quiet time, and again, our digital audio collection is much bigger than the physical one. My kids know they will lose tablet privileges if they use them for anything other than reading or listening to books, so we don’t have many issues with playing games or doing other things with them.
Each of my kids needed a pair of headphones for school, and they’ve been equally useful at home for anything from Zoom calls to listening to foreign language accents. We love both this pair and this pair! (That second pair is particularly good for travel since they don’t take up much room and are super comfortable, even if you fall asleep while wearing them.)
At the beginning of distance learning, I just had my kids write things out on sheets of paper. That got so annoying! They were constantly handing me things to check and they’d get misplaced and we’d all be frustrated. I found it worked loads better when each child had a dedicated notebook. Lots of people love the composition books, but I prefer spiral-bound notebooks that can lay flat.
This is a whole series of books that helps kids learn to recognize and regulate emotions. So useful in a homeschool setting or just as amazing life lessons!
We’ve tried a few different drawer systems and this is my favorite so far. I loved that the IKEA drawers slid all the way out easily but they bent with the slightest weight and didn’t last. These are much more sturdy and also come out all the way. Plus, it has wheels so you can move it to different places.
Each of my kids has a drawer for their family economy list, current work, or a few special pencils or other items. Helps keep things neat and tidy. It also works great as an art cart!
We have lots of bookshelves in different areas of our house and in the playroom itself. This bookshelf is perfect for keeping in the school area since it has lots of shelves that are perfect for organizing and categorizing. I’m this area, I keep books about art, science, history, activity books, and workbooks.
Yes, I’m aware it’s ridiculous to put a vacuum on a homeschool supply list, but bear with me. The one thing that required the most adaptation with distance learning was the amount of mess! With 7 people in the house all day, and with three of those kids trying to do some sort of schoolwork, lots of little messes happened.
Plus, I really want to be the kind of parent that encourages creative exploration, but it’s honestly hard for me to just let them go sometimes. I LOVE this vacuum so much because it makes it super easy to do quick cleanups throughout the day.
It’s cordless, so lightweight, and super powerful. Plus, it works on carpet, rugs, or hard flooring. So it’s really easy to quickly clean up when we’re done for the day, and my older 3 kids can all easily use it on their own. We even brought it without the hose (just the handheld version) on the RV with us! We’ve had this vacuum for nearly 3 years and it’s honestly one of my very favorite household items.
I always think it’s fun to create a distinct space with a rug. We have a few rugs in our playroom and they’re perfect for partitioning the space without actually dividing it. We love this one in the area by the books, and this one goes under the craft/school table. I’ve also been very curious to try one of these washable rugs!
Stay tuned later this week when I’ll share our favorite art supplies to have at home – perfect for homeschooling or for crafts!
IF YOU LIKED THIS POST ABOUT OUR FAVORITE HOMESCHOOL SUPPLIES, YOU MIGHT LIKE THESE POSTS TOO:
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- Teaching Your Child To Read: Tips for Encouraging a Reluctant Reader
- Our Favorite Math Resources For Kids