Really Good Stuff (RGS) is my number one favorite place to shop when I am looking for something for the classroom, or for educational gifts for my nieces. This holiday season, my ultimate goal for gift giving is for every gift to have an educational purpose.
I appreciate the variety that RGS provides, making it easy to find just what you’re looking for… or even for that one (or twenty) things you never knew you absolutely needed to have.
You can read my previous article, 12 Things that Special Education Teachers Need From Really Good Stuff here. The second item on that list, Classroom Light Filters, is still my absolute favorite classroom game changer. These filters are followed closely by number 9 on my list, Durable Book and Binders Holders, because of my need to color code and stay organized!
This new list of 20 things every teacher needs from Really Good Stuff focuses more on activities and resources for your students to use in the classroom… that can also double as great holiday gifts for any child to use at home!
The target audience for these gifts vary, but are great for any elementary-aged child.
Sure you can make these on your own, but I like that these are ready to go, color coded, and have the vocabulary word for each shape on the actual stick. I’m all about saving time for myself, but these are just a win-win-win for everyone.
2. Pet Counters
I have this thing for counters, and I think it’s important for parents to have a set at home too. These new pet counters are pure adorable perfection too, super relatable for kids. You never know what you can use them for… counting or color sorting in the bathtub, pack a few in your purse to play with at a restaurant table, busy bags in the car.
Parents, before you say “I don’t need baskets!” … you do. And the best part about these pencil and marker baskets is that they come with lids! These baskets don’t need to be used for writing utensils, they’re the perfect size for color sorting tasks or work tasks, like sorting silverware (if you want to work on life skills).
Check out these book baskets that come in 21 colors for color-coding and organization.
Beads are great for fine motor skill practice, even better when the skill doubles as word work. I like the size of these beads, and the little setup tray that it comes with. It helps students spell the word first on the tray, then put it on the string. There’s also a Fry Word String Ups set.
These dressing boards are super functional and great for elementary students of any age. The boards practice fine motor skills in a fun way that isn’t overwhelming with too many tasks per board.
I am all for flexible seating and alternative seating for students to gain sensory input and output from, but this glittery option is pure perfection. It’s great for little seats, but the ball itself does come in larger size for older students.
Not enough plugs, messy wires, losing chargers and fear of damaging your classroom tablets… these are all problems that you can solve with this innovative storage and charging base. Now you can keep all of your tablets together in one spot and make they are charged and ready for use when you need them!
Pocket chart stands were something that came to me late in the game… and by late, I mean this school year. It was that thing that I never knew I needed, and now I won’t ever go back to teaching without one.
For classrooms with students with special needs, it’s a great anchor base for housing PECS/communication pieces or answer pieces for adapted work binders.
Working in a self-contained special needs classroom, I’ve learned the importance of keeping whiteboard supplies out of the reach of students. I like using these magnetic erasers for the front board because I can place them up high, out of reach.
For student use during centers, I use circle scrubbies.
Measuring items in nonstandard units is an important skill, and it’s important to practice the skill with multiples of the same item. I like that this set comes with different sizes of fish, so students can compare and graph their results too!
Every teacher uses and loves the dry erase sleeves that open from the top. Lamination can be expensive and time consuming to cut out, but these dry erase sleeves are great too because your reproducibles can be reused over and over again, saving you precious copy time.
Each desk prop and park has a slot to hold a desktop helper so that students can refer to it easily. It also comes with an adhesive strip to secure the trays to students’ desks… making it a great item for any special education classroom too!
I ordered a few of these and plan on using them for communication strips and lesson specific core vocabulary boards. I like that the deluxe version holds more stuff too, like a water bottle.
14. Pencil Pals
Alongside the Desktop Prop and Parks, I really like the Pencil Pals too because it gives students a place to store their pencils. No more pencils rolling down desks, falling between the cracks of two desks, or students misplacing pencils… because they have a very specific place to keep their writing utensil.
My favorite part is that they’re adhesive, so you can literally keep them anywhere and everywhere. Inside of desks, inside of pencil boxes, on top of desks, at centers… and teachers you can use these too on your door frames. For some reason I feel like I always am in search of a pen when I stand at my classroom door, is it just me?
I LOVE Bouncy Bands! They’re a non-intrusive way for students to get the wiggles out while sitting in a chair or at a desk. #enoughsaid
Read more about the benefits of bouncy bands, a product designed to promote learning through kinesthetic movement.
Sometimes our students struggle with writing sentences independently, and I like that this sentence builder is interactive and perfect for any student to practice using sight words.
You can easily have students copy the sentences to paper or write the sentence on a small whiteboard, making it multisensory!
I personally prefer plastic letters over the foam letters because the magnets stay on better. BUT this set of plastic letters just might be my new favorite because it includes both versions of the letter “a” and the letter“g.” Let students practice with individualized, magnetic dry erase boards.
Fine Motor Friday wouldn’t be the same without dough, really. And since we’re always working on letters and numbers, this set is perfect.
It can easily be used at school or home to practice important fine motor skills and academic language arts and math skills. Use the numbers to create number sentences and the letters to make simple words.
It is no secret that students love tape. If you give them a roll to tape one rip in their paper, they’re use the whole roll to laminate the entire page. #neverfails So why not make it part of the lesson?
You could use the E.Z.C Reader Strips, and they’re fun… but nothing beats tape. Plus the action of pulling the correct amount of tape out of the roll and cutting it is a phenomenal way to incorporate fine motor skills!
I like having a good mix of different counters available for students, but most of the time they don’t stack… that’s why these are at the top of my list! Stacking counters are great for making groups or mixing different colors to practice fractions.
What is on your Really Good Stuff wish list?