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12 Science Classroom Must-Haves to Survive the School Year

Learn how to make your year easier with this list of science classroom must-haves!

Science teachers, are you already planning for next year?

Whether you’re a brand new science teacher, or a veteran, we all know it’s the small things in life that can make your day go a little smoother!

I’ve been talking with some of my science teacher friends and asked them to share their classroom must-haves for teaching middle school science.

We’ve gathered a list of science classroom classroom essentials – the things we just can’t live without in our classrooms!

Have a small budget? These are great items to add to your Amazon Wishlist!!

Check out this list of science classroom must-haves to get your school year started!

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase with that link, I will, without additional cost to you, receive a small commission.

science-classroom must haves and essentials

1. Personal Laminator

Does your school have a laminator you can use? Our school does, but the turnaround time to be laminated can be several days, plus the fees come out of my pocket.

One of the best investments I’ve made is purchasing my own laminator!

I love not having to wait for someone else to do my laminating – plus, I can get things ready last minute!

I use the laminator for laminating task cards (always on cardstock to make them extra durable), papers I hang on the wall, group numbers, station directions, and decorations.

Laminating makes everything last so much longer, plus I love being able to file things and pull them out to use the next year!

I love this Scotch Laminator!

2. Wireless Presenter

Where has this been all of my life? I purchased this wireless remote in September, and don’t know how I lived without it!

Instead of being stuck to the computer desk, I can walk around the room with the wireless presenter as I teach, and even use the pointer to show students things I want them to pay extra attention to while I’m in the back of the room.

The freedom is amazing!

3. Liquid Chalk Markers

Almost every teacher mentioned chalk markers on their “science classroom must-haves list”!

Spice up a boring review with these chalk markers. Students can write directly on lab tables – they come right off with water.

It’s a sneaky little to get kids to clean your tables during class!

4. Student Whiteboards

We all agreed that one of our favorite ways to get total student engagement is whiteboards!

I love them for task cards, class reviews, games, and quick check-ins.

Whiteboards work best when each student has their own, but if they share, I have students take turns writing their answers, so everyone is participating.

I made this purchase about ten years ago, and still use the same ones!

This set is priced at less than $2 each, plus they come with erasers!

5. Pushpin Magnets

If your large classroom whiteboards are magnetic – you NEED these magnetic pushpins!

I use them for everything – especially to display and move my word wall cards!

6. Clipboards

Do your students struggle to keep papers organized when they’re working outside, in the hallways, or on the floor?

Clipboards have been a lifesaver in my classroom!

They’re such a novelty, students actually love using them to write on – win/win!

7. Document Camera

I don’t think I could live without my document camera! It makes everything in the classroom so much easier.

Just turn the camera on and it projects anything to your screen.

My favorite uses:

  • ⭐Science demos⭐Students can see exactly what you’re doing, up close and personal. No more crowing around a table and trying to squeeze everyone in to see!
  • I love it for giving directions on a worksheet or going over answers – I don’t always have a digital copy, and this couldn’t be easier!
  • It’s great for showing students how to fold papers or begin simple projects!

One of the best things about this document camera is that it records!!

8. Wireless Doorbell

Do you have an attention signal?

We all know that classroom management is KEY to a successful classroom!

Wireless doorbells make transitions and attention getting a breeze!

Wireless doorbells are SO easy to use and inexpensive!

I love this wireless doorbell – it comes in several colors and has 52 ring sounds, which the students love!

9. Student Headphones

I purchased these headphones several years ago, and it was one of THE BEST investments I’ve made.

Classrooms rely on technology and when students don’t have headphones with them, it’s difficult for them to participate.

These headphones are light and durable.

I store each set of headphones in a separate dollar store magazine holder.

When students need a pair of headphones to complete an activity, they grab the entire container and take it to their desk.

This makes them easy to keep track of and keeps them in good shape!

Plus, it limits disruptions and keeps the class running smoothly!

10. Label Maker

I’ve had my label maker for years and I can’t tell you enough how much I love it!

Yes, the label maker is not as fancy as a Cricut, but the label maker is so fast and easy to use.

I literally use my label maker for everything!

…..labeling drawers in my science lab, bins, folders, supplies, and cabinets.

I also love that the labels peel off easily!!

11. Paper Cutter

One of my favorite tools is a paper cutter! Teachers from our hallway are always coming to my room to use “the guillotine,” which I jokingly call it. 🤣

It’s a huge timesaver because it cuts several pieces at once and is easy to line up and get nice, straight cuts.

The paper cutter makes all of the tedious cutting tasks I do all year a breeze!

12. Magnetic Clips

Magnetic clips are cheap and versatile – and one of my favorite Dollar Tree finds!

You can use them for anything.

My favorite use…. holding pencils.

I always keep pencils available in my classroom on the board. Just come get it and return when finished, no questions asked!


Ready to head back to school with confidence? Check out the blog post “The Back to School Checklist for Science Teachers.”

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