Smooth Sailing Into a New School Year: Must-Have Items

Thanks for joining us for our big Smooth Sailing event! Today, I want to talk about shopping. Now I’m a gal who loves to shop, but back-to-school shopping? Sweet baby Batman. It. is. my. favorite. Is there anything better than new school supplies?! So today, I’m going to share with you my top 5 must-have items on my back-to-school shopping list. Hop aboard, matey, and away we go….

I LOVE THESE! They make me want to turn the world into one giant magnetic playground. The business card magnets are adhesive-backed and SO much easier to use than magnetic tape or tabs. They are sized for business cards (obviously), which makes them the perfect size for putting anchor charts up on your board, creating name tags, and anything else you can think of. They are a great thickness too; thin enough to be flexible and easy to work with, thick enough to work. 
The picture above shows how I used them to make name tags – this made it super easy to create student groupings each day during class. In the picture to the left, I used them in my book check-out area (you can read more about that in my post on book nooks here). For the bulletin board border, I just cut the magnets into smaller pieces. Click {here} to find them on Amazon.

I really don’t know why or how it took me so long to realize how much easier these puppies were than the pre-perforated versions. But whoa. Full page is where it’s at. Just print right on them, and then cut. No worrying about lining up the labels or running through half the pack trying to get them just right. 

My Independent Reading Resource Pack is included in our big Smooth Sailing Giveaway prize pack. (You can click here to read all about it on my blog.) I made these labels after blogging about it, and they were so easy to do on the full page label sheets. You can download them for free by clicking {here}. There’s a label for resources, one for book logs, and one for the front of the folder. The one on the front is editable so you can type in your students’ names if you like.

These are also PERFECT for creating water bottle labels. You can click {here} to grab my back-to-school water bottle labels free from another post. If you read the post, you’ll see I used a laminator and washi tape – not difficult, but this is easier. I used the waterproof full-page labels to do our wedding water bottles. 

Here are links to two different types of labels – on the left are the waterproof labels that are made for laser printers and on the right are the labels made for inkjet printers. 

I’m not going to mince words on this one. If you do not yet have a personal laminator, you must get one immediately. It will change your life. It is amazing. The end. Click {here} to check out the one that I have on Amazon.

This thing is awesome. Do not get one of the paper cutters with a slider. They seem like a great idea. I have bought two of them. I have broken two of them. Go for the gold and get the real deal, the guillotine kind with the terrifying lever. Worth. It. The finger pads make it SUPER easy to cut perfectly straight lines. I love this thing. Click {here} to see the one I have – worth every penny. (And it’s not too many pennies!)
I saved the best for last. Imagine me doing my best Scarlett O’Hara impression here: With God as my witness, I will never use regular tape again! I use these little glorious rollers to create all my interactive notebook samples. If they were cheaper, I would buy them for the students too – but they are definitely priced at a teacher-hands-only level. Click {here} to grab some. They are my favorite thing ever.


  1. says

    Sweet baby batman….hahaha!

    I’m buying that paper cutter. I never priced affordable ones and that one is definitely affordable!

  2. says

    Thanks for the tips!! I was just thinking about how I needed a personal paper trimmer. I bought a laminator last summer and boy oh boy has it been well-used!! I have never even heard of that Scotch rolling tape. I bet I would love it too!!! Have a great weekend!
    Grade 4 Buzz

  3. says

    I love the tape roller! I have never seen that before. I may also be investing in the guillotine 🙂 paper cutter. I have the slide and slice one and it’s not the best. Thanks!

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