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Back-to-School Toolkit: How to Get the Classroom Supplies You Need

A teacher sees an empty classroom like a painter sees a blank canvas. Where we might see blank walls and empty bulletin boards, they understand its potential as a work of art, as a safe, creative space where learning can flourish.
But just like a painter won’t get anywhere without brushes, a teacher needs the right tools to build a great classroom. That’s where our community of donors and partners comes in: They believe in teachers, and are ready to help get you the supplies you need to build that one-of-a-kind classroom.
We want to make it as easy as possible for you to start your first, fifth, or hundredth DonorsChoose classroom project request. That’s why we put together this blog post, full of articles and resources to help you get the supplies you need and have your #BestSchoolYear.
Start your first classroom project
As a wise governess once told us, the beginning is a very good place to start. Earlier this week, we shared our “Do Re Mi” in a DonorsChoose 101 Facebook LIVE webinar. Click below to watch “5 Tips for Getting the Classroom Supplies You Need.”

If you don’t have time to watch the full webinar, check out the blog post on How to Fill Your Classroom for a written introduction to our site.
Find inspiration from fellow teachers
Sometimes teachers come to DonorsChoose with a very specific need, whether that’s pencils, printer toner, or a professional development opportunity. But sometimes you’re looking for classroom ideas, and other teachers are often the best place for inspiration. We’ve compiled some of our favorite ideas for projects involving classroom setup, team sports, preschool students, elementary literacy, hands-on STEM, flexible seating, and Makerspaces. Take your pick, or search through every project teachers have created so far (all 900,000 of them!) You can search by your grade level, subject area, or city.
With the ability to shop from more than 20 education and general vendors on DonorsChoose, you can find the tools you need for just about any project imaginable. (Check out some of them here.)
Connect with a community of supporters
Did you know that half of the money donated on DonorsChoose comes from our corporate and foundation partners? Last year over $55 million went to classroom projects across the country. Learn more about how to take advantage of that support, and follow us on Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date on the latest funding offers.
The other half of project funding comes from citizen philanthropists. The DonorsChoose team is always working to find new supporters and to make sure our existing community knows about your project. We also know your own network is full of people who might want to support you and your students, so we’ve put together resources to help you share your classroom’s story with people you already know. Once your project is posted, you can use this quick routine to get you started, and don’t forget our team is always here to help!
Create Your Project

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