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The Essential Preschool Supply List for 2024

A thorough preschool supply list will keep you organized and provide a safe learning environment for children. Equip your preschool with all the essentials for learning, comfort, and safety.

The Essential Preschool Supply List for 2024

The Essential Preschool Supply List

Operating a preschool business is a large task. From hiring and managing staff, creating curriculum, record keeping, and maintaining a facility, it is critical to have everything in place to ensure a successful school year. One of the most important parts of your preparation is having a comprehensive preschool supply list.

A thorough supply list will help you stay organized with all the things you need to provide children with a safe and comfortable learning environment and also help families prepare. In this article, we’ll cover the essentials you’ll need for your classrooms as well as optional supplies that can help children adjust to their new environment.

Download a free supply list for childcare and preschool programs!

Preschool supplies list

Teachers need the right items to maintain their classrooms, keep children engaged, and facilitate learning experiences. Whether you're starting a daycare center or simply replenishing your classroom supplies, your supply list will need to include a variety of things to meet each of those needs.

From learning materials and art supplies to storage items and cleaning supplies, each item plays a vital role in supporting early childhood education. Consider dividing your supply lists into the following categories:

Learning materials

  • Blocks and puzzles
  • Books and magazines
  • Manipulatives, such as lacers and counters
  • Age-appropriate toys
  • Board games
  • Dramatic play area with props 
  • Music center with a variety of instruments
  • Alphabet poster
  • Numbers poster
  • Days of the week poster

Activity and craft supplies

  • Outdoor play supplies such as balls, rockers, and wagons
  • Play dough or clay
  • Markers and crayons
  • Colored pencils
  • Highlighters
  • Chalk
  • Craft sticks
  • Paint and paintbrushes 
  • Construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue sticks and tape
  • Stickers

Storage items

  • Bookshelves
  • Clear storage containers or bins
  • Wall shelves
  • Coat rack or coat storage
  • Baskets

Cleaning supplies

  • Multi-purpose cleaning spray
  • Disposable gloves
  • Paper towels
  • Broom and dustpan
  • Trash bin and trash bags
  • Disinfectant spray
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Vacuum

Classroom items

  • Comfortable rest mats and floor cushions
  • Hand sanitizer 
  • Sunblock for outdoor play
  • First aid kit
  • Visual schedule
  • Decorative wall decor
  • Tissues
  • Hand soap
  • Toilet paper
  • Baby wipes
  • Dry-erase board and markers
  • Nametags

Childcare management software like brightwheel can help you automate tasks and save up to 20 hours each month. Efficiently run your program from one place, stay compliant with state requirements, and enhance children's learning experiences. Simplify billing and get paid faster by enrolling your families in autopay and make it easy for staff to communicate with families, administrators, and other staff.

Preschool supply list for parents

In addition to the items in your classroom, children will also need some personal necessities and supplies from home, such as clothes and shoes, and general school items, such as a lunchbox and water bottle. Helping families equip their children with these supplies can help them to be more comfortable in a new environment away from home. Here’s a supply list you can share with families:

  • Extra set of clothes
  • Indoor shoes or slippers
  • Pencils and markers
  • Pull-ups or diapers (if needed)
  • Reusable water bottle 
  • Lunchbox, spoons, and forks (some schools prefer paper plates and disposable utensils, so communicate your preferences to families)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Necessary medication (to be kept and administered by the teacher) 
  • Jacket or sweater
  • Backpack
  • Lotion and lip balm
  • Favorite toy or stuffed animal
  • Favorite blanket

Optional preschool supplies

This list is convenient for children who require a little help adjusting to their new environment. Here are some optional supplies to ask families to pack for their children:

  • Games and toys to engage children during playtime or before pick-up in the evening
  • Personal hygiene supplies like combs, toothpaste, and toothbrushes
  • Personal storage box to store their supplies where they can easily locate them
  • A family photo that a child can reference throughout the day for comfort
  • Large t-shirts or overalls for molding, painting, or other messy activities

Final thoughts

Back-to-school season is a busy time for both families and teachers. Having a comprehensive list of classroom essentials can make preparation easier and quicker for everyone, ensuring children have everything they need to learn and grow.

Brightwheel is the complete solution for early education providers, enabling you to streamline your center’s operations and build a stand-out reputation. Brightwheel connects the most critical aspects of running your center—including sign in and out, parent communications, tuition billing, and licensing and compliance—in one easy-to-use tool, along with providing best-in-class customer support and coaching. Brightwheel is trusted by thousands of early education centers and millions of parents. Learn more at

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