Although most school districts are still unsure about what the beginning of the school year will look like, there is a chance that some schools will hold classes (at least partially) virtually. This news is certainly a bummer, but luckily we’ve had a few months to practice! Based on our experiences teaching through the pandemic this year, we’ve compiled a list of the best virtual teaching supplies. These 15 items will make your life nearly a THOUSAND times easier—trust us.
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Using a second monitor is a game-changer! It allows you to see your students and share your screen at the same time, which helped me feel a little bit closer to my students—so worth it!
Staring at a screen for the entire day gets old very quickly—avoid frequent headaches by investing in a pair of these blue light blocking glasses. Your eyes will thank you!
This planning book was a lifesaver for me. Although I mainly used Google Calendar for scheduling, having a separate area where I was able to keep all of my notes and plan lessons kept me sane.
Teaching through video means we have to get a little creative with our virtual teaching supplies. Personally, I’ve found that my students have an easier time seeing the examples I write out on a smaller board that I can then hold up directly in front of the camera instead of using my bigger wall-hanging board that’s further away from my computer. This is a great budget-friendly alternative to a document camera!
Especially if you have a lot of distractions at home, noise-cancelling headphones are a necessity. This pair also has a built-in microphone, so no need to worry about how students will hear you.
If you have the room in your budget, a document camera is one of the wisest investments you can make. It makes distance learning a million times easier, but there’s also so many ways you can utilize it in your classroom once it’s safe to go back.
7. Laptop Stand
Especially if you don’t have a monitor, this laptop stand will save your back and neck. Say goodbye to slouching!
If you’ve been working from home on a laptop since March, you know exactly why this keyboard is on this list.
9. Ring Light
My office is dark, and this ring light has done wonders for lighting up my space and making my face more visible when I zoom and record content for my class. Not to mention, it makes me feel like a pro model, which is a perk.
If you don’t have a printer at home, now may be the time to invest in one. This one is a reasonable price and super high quality, plus the instant ink program makes refilling cartridges easier than ever!
11. USB Microphone
My laptop is quite old and wasn’t ready for the amount of video & audio I had to record over the past few months. However, that was easily fixed; I just plugged this microphone into its USB port, and voila! My old laptop was suddenly able to record crystal-clear audio. Definitely one of the must-have virtual teaching supplies if you have an older laptop.
12. Post-it Notes
Distance learning had me feeling pretty scatterbrained (even more so than usual towards the end of the year), and sticky notes were so helpful. I used them to write down reminders for myself, to write out my daily schedule, and so much more!
13. Seat Cushion
As a teacher who is used to being in a classroom, normally I’m concerned about comfortable footwear. This year, however, I ended up sitting in one spot for longer than I ever had in my life! This cushion is a great way to make sure you have a comfortable place to sit without having to buy a whole new desk chair.
14. File Folders
Especially if you don’t have a dedicated home office, these file folders are going to come in handy. They’ll save you time, space, and your sanity!
My guilty pleasure is chocolate. I love these bars specifically and always have them on hand for a bad day. Remember that jumping into distance learning is no easy task—bad days are no stranger to teachers (distance learning or not) and you’ll likely have more of them, but know that what you’re doing is making a difference for your students. Don’t give up! Just keep plenty of guilty pleasures on-hand and make time to take care of yourself.
Looking for discounts on distance-learning supplies for the fall? Join our Facebook Group, WeAreTeachers Deals to stay up to date with all the latest & greatest deals!
Even if you won’t be heading back to your classroom this fall, support from your students and their parents will be imperative for a healthy learning atmosphere. Check out these tips on how to build a classroom community online!