4 Must Haves In My Math Classroom

September 25, 2022 No Comments

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I’m in my third year of teaching in my current school and I finally have a grip on the curriculum and feel like my room is MY room – not inherited from the teacher who was in there before me. As the school year started, I have been stocking my classroom with some great “must haves” that help me with both classroom management and classroom organization.

1. Wireless Doorbell

This is a tried-and-true classroom must have for me! I keep my wireless doorbell on my lanyard (using a hand sanitizer holder!) and with a tap of the button, I can get my room quiet in an INSTANT. I don’t use classroom callbacks with my students, because I pretty quickly realized it wasn’t my thing. My favorite part about the doorbell? My students are STILL guessing how I tap the doorbell so fast…they will never know 🙂

2. Seven Drawer Organizer

When I say that this is a “must have,” I really mean it – I have THREE of these seven drawer organizers in my classroom. I keep one inside my closet for random craft supplies (like yarn for my 3D Hanging Garlands), one behind my desk for teacher supplies (like mechanical pencils and grading pens – as well as my fancy teacher only pencil sharpener!), and one as a “Student Command Center.”

The Student Command Center is the hub for all of my students. They can get extra thin whiteboard markers, glue sticks, clip boards, and scissors WHENEVER they need – they don’t even have to ask! Having these seven drawer organizers have changed my organizational game in my classroom!

3. A Personal Laminator & Laminating Sheets

Oh my goodness, I don’t think I could LIVE without my personal laminator. I am constantly laminating Puzzle Task Cards, Math Spinners, Math Wars, and Bump Games (and even more activities that would be too much to list!) that I always need to have my laminator with me. Having a personal laminator means I can bring it back and forth from school and I can prep my materials from ANYWHERE.

I’ve tested out a few laminating sheets, but the Scotch brand are by far my favorite. I am a cut-laminate-cut kind of teacher and I find that these never break the seal. Use my new favorite laminating hack to secure all of the small cut out pieces that might move during laminating!

4. Communicator Dry Erase Boards

I use communicators almost daily in my math lessons. It’s a great way for ALL of my students to participate by completing the problem and holding up their answer. I have a very quiet student this year, and her math confidence has already grown by infusing these communicators into our practice – it gives her a chance to participate other than raising her hand. When I work with small groups, I often have the students bring their communicators with them to my table. I utilize many black line masters for my communicators, so be on the lookout in the future for a compilation for upper elementary students!

I teach in a departmentalized schedule, so each desk contains one communicator, one dry erase marker, and an eraser for my students to share across the day.

And there you have it, my four “must haves” for my math classroom! I wouldn’t be able to LIVE without these items as a math teacher…but this isn’t even including my manipulative must-haves! Be on the lookout for that post coming soon!

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The Math Matrix

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Hi! I'm Paige, known as The Math Matrix. I have been a teacher for three years, in both a middle school and elementary school, ALWAYS teaching math, either as a special education teacher or a departmentalized general education teacher. Needless to say, math is my JAM and I can't wait to share with you tips, tricks, and resources to enhance your math teaching. Read More