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These 17 Affordable Essentials Will Help You Set Up The Perfect Home Classroom

If you’ve decided not to send your child to school in person this fall, you’re going to need to create a classroom environment at home. That means your back-to-school shopping list is going to be a little longer than usual, but it doesn't mean tk. There are plenty of products out there to help you set up a home classroom for less than $100.

“There’s no reason to run out and spend hundreds of dollars on various homeschool supplies when there is so much available for free online these days,” Laura Kronen, a homeschooling expert and author of Homeschool Happily: Yes, You Can! tells Romper over the phone. “However, there are a few products that will make your life much easier and help your virtual learning environment to run a lot smoother."

And don't forget that in addition to getting supplies for your kid, you might need some tools for teachers as well (especially if you’re planning to homeschool, as opposed to signing up your child for remote learning).

From agendas and organizers to calculators and calendars, think of this as a revised school supply list with all the basics you and your kid need for an academically excellent school year.

We only include products that have been independently selected by Romper's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.


An Essential Desk

Move over, kitchen counter. This desk from Target has space for a laptop, books, and even a lamp. Two small shelves can help store notebooks and additional accessories, too. And since it's compact, it won't be hard to make this desk fit in smaller spaces (like a corner of the living room, for example).


An LED Desk Lamp

If your child’s school space is low on light, this lamp from Threshold can offer some added illumination. Available in both brass and pewter, this lamp has an adjustable base that will let your kid find the best light possible for their projects. It even has a touch-activated sensor to make turning the lamp on (or off) a breeze.


A Wooden Clipboard

This clipboard from TheHeartDepartmentCo can be used either on your desk or as a wall hanging, thanks to a leather strap designed for wall display. Use it for showcasing your child's artwork, an affirmative phrase, or use it creatively as a calendar.


An All-In-One Printer

When you’re short on space, having one machine that does it all can be a big game-changer. Enter this all-in-one printer from HP that can print, copy, scan and fax both documents and photos. It’s a pretty sharp printer, too, with a resolution of up to 4800 x 1200 dpi color resolution. (It can even print pics directly from your phone.) This 4-in-1 printer also has over 4,600 5-star ratings on Best Buy.


A Dry-Erase Whiteboard

Whether it’s to help your child understand how to multiply or just leave a note for your kiddo to clean up their desk, this dry erase board can do the trick. Measuring 24 H x 36” W, the board has an aluminum frame and a smooth surface that cleans up easily and won’t streak.


A Desk Chair

Trying to keep your distance learning student from slouching in their seat? The MyPosture chair is ergonomically friendly by offering external postural and lumbar support. It comes in primary colors like red, yellow, red — and green, too.


An Electric Pencil Sharpener

Your child can get to the point faster with this pencil sharpener from Staples. With its quiet motor, your kid won’t disrupt their class during the Zoom call every time they need to sharpen their pencil. And no need to worry about over or under-sharpening; this model will make sure that pencil is sharpened just enough.


Weekly Calendar

Because no two days are ever the same, you’ll need a calendar to keep track of all the chaos (er, activities). Enter the Undated Weekly Calendar, which uses 1 7/8 Post It Super sticky notes to serve as reminders of when your child has meetings with their teacher, or just need to study for social studies. The calendar comes with 26 planner sheets and 150 full stick notes for the utmost in organization.


File Folders

From papers to presentations, you’re going to need a fab filing system to keep track of your child’s schoolwork. This 100-pack (sold on Amazon) comes in your standard manila color, but if you’re feeling fancy (or just need to color code your kiddo’s classes), you can always opt for the Assorted selection ($17).


Collapsible File Storage Organizer Storage Boxes

Your files will stay neatly organized in this sturdy storage box. The boxes (which come in charcoal, cream, gray, and navy) boast built-in handles for easy lifting, and also come with a label slot and protective cover so you can easily organize any items inside. Not only are these linen boxes stackable, but if you don’t need them anymore, you can just fold them up and put them away.


Goal-Setting Notebook

Your girl can set some goals (and crush them, too) with this cute spiral notebook from Etsy seller CopperandBrassPaper. The notebook, which measures 5.5 x 8.5 inches, boasts 50 pages of college-ruled paper. It's perfect for penning plans for the future as well as thoughts, ideas, and dreams.


A Storage Desktop Carousel

If your kid’s desk doesn’t have drawers, they can use this handy-dandy desktop carousel instead. Designed to hold pencils, pens, markers, scissors and more, you can keep everything tidy thanks to the organizer’s 3-drawer storage drawers, metal hooks, and various compartments to corral your kiddo’s school stuff. Best part: The organizer spins the office supplies around so they’ll always have the right school supplies at their fingertips.


A Calculator

Multiplying and dividing won’t be a big deal, thanks to this cute little calculator. It comes in nine colors, and has an 8-digit LCD display which makes answers easy to read. Big buttons make subtraction simple, and it’s ideal for helping your child review their answers — or (ahem), ensuring that yours are correct.


An Amazon Tablet

This Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition Kids’ Tablet offers 1GB of RAM, and its 1024 x 600 display will make images appear super crisp. The tablet comes with a protective case, and even has its own kickstand for hands-free reading. It just might encourage your reluctant reader to break out their books and read independently… for once.


Aragram 3D Red Apple Wall Clock

Whether you’re teaching your child how to tell time (or counting down the minutes until the end of the school day), it’ll all be easy with this red apple wall clock from Wayfair. Measuring approximately 10” W by 10” high by 2” D, this cute little clock has hour and minute hands to help your child understand the concept of time.


A Planner For The Whole Family

Between math lessons and meal planning, there’s a lot that you’re going to have to keep track of as a homeschooling mama. Make your life a whole lot easier (and organized) with this planner from Well Planned Gal, which helps you stay on top of your child’s schooling (there’s even space for attendance and report cards), as well as weekly menu planning and additional activities.


Bamboo Green Tea Soy Candle

After a super stressful day of distance learning, you and your student are going to need a way to decompress. You can light this cool handpoured candle from Aromaology, an Etsy seller with over 2,400 sales. A citrus fragrance is married with green tea leaves, bergamot, mandarin, and jasmine for the ultimate in stress relief.