As online learning continues to grow in popularity, back to school for many students means logging into virtual classrooms. But, like any school year, it is important to have a few essential items to optimize your online learning experience!

Below is my recommended Back to School Supply List For Online Learning that my students and I have found to be the most helpful.

[This article contains Amazon affiliate links – no cost to you, but I do earn a small commission to help keep the blog afloat]


Earbuds with Microphone

One of the great things about online learning is that you can do it anywhere. However, one of the challenges is that “anywhere” can be unpredictable.

Having a great pair of earbuds is essential for blocking out noise around you, while also not distracting others in your environment. With online learning, you will likely be watching video lessons, listening to podcasts, or Zooming with your class, and having a way to listen and focus is essential.

Personally, I recommend getting a pair with a built-in microphone. Many teachers will give you assignments requiring you to record yourself or to participate in virtual discussions. A simple microphone attached to your earbuds ensures you will always have clear, crisp audio.

Personally, I use this great $10 pair of earbuds from Amazon.


Bluelight Blocking Glasses

Screens emit an unnatural amount of blue light, which, over time, can cause eye strain, headaches, sleep problems, and other issues. Therefore, it is really important to be proactive and protect your eyes from long periods of screen time.

Blue light blocking glasses is a simple way to filter out some of the harsh blue light. Think of it as sunscreen, but for your eyes. A pair of these should be on every Back to School Supply List For Online Learning.

Personally, I use this pair from Livho which I got on Amazon, but there are tons of options out there at different price points. The ones pictured above are made by AHXLL and come in kid sizes.


Keyboard Case

Have you ever tried writing an essay on a touchscreen? Yeah, it’s a nightmare! Therefore, you absolutely need to get yourself an iPad case with an attached keyboard. The last thing you want to be doing when writing a paper is dealing with constant touchscreen frustrations.

Get a keyboard. You will be happy that you did!

Personally, I am a huge fan of the Zagg Rugged Book which I ordered from Amazon. I have used it for many years and it has been durable and dependable. I’ve never had an issue. Plus, I really like how it can easily be detached from the keyboard when I want to do videos or photography.


Paper Planner

I do almost everything digitally (Just take a look at my list of favorite apps to use in the classroom!). However, the paper planner still remains my preferred way of tracking daily to-do lists and assignments. I have also learned through experience that physical paper planners are also much more effective for students.

Nearly every time I ask a student that is struggling how they keep track of their assignments they either tell me they use their iPad or nothing at all. The problem with students using iPads as planners is that it is very easy to swipe it off the screen and it disappears and is forgotten about.

Simply switching students to paper planners has resulted in a massive increase in assignment completion rates and getting work turned in on time.

I have had a lot of students use this planner from amazon and they love it!

I also created a printable weekly planner that a lot of my students use which you can just download for free.


iPad Stylus

A stylus is a digital pen that enables you to write freehand directly onto the screen. This is incredibly useful, as you will likely be required to “show your work” in math, and markup texts in english. It is also nice to have an easy way to tap the screen with more precision when navigating around on an iPad.

It has been my experience that even though you can buy a cheap stylus, this is one item that you definitely get what you pay for. The cheap ones are constantly breaking and needing to be replaced. In my opinion, just buy a good one and save yourself the hassle. Check out this one from Amazon.


iPad Mount

After several months of teaching online, I began to have neck pain. It became apparent to me that slightly having my head tilted down all day to stare at a screen was the cause. Ideally, the top of your screen should be about eye level in order to maintain an appropriate posture.

A lot of the work I do is on my laptop, therefore I use this adjustable laptop stand. There are two places that I do my work and I ended up buying a second one because I like it so much.


I will continue to add specific items that I test out and find are valuable. Please let me know in the comments if there are any items that you recommend that I check out!

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