I saw a post on a beauty blog about 10 products they use everyday, so I thought it would be fun to do from the perspective of an Art teacher! So I walked around my classroom and looked at the things I use the most. I've tried many brands and items over the years and definitely have some favourites!
1. Spray cleaner for the tables
Normally I use a heavy duty spray bottle filled simply with water and a big squirt of dish soap. This year we were given this special spray (covid). But I'm a big fan of dish soap water- does the job! I use microfibre cloths and we have a washing machine at the school so these get washed daily.
2. Electric Sharpener
I looked up tons of reviews and recommendations before I bought this one. It's the X-ACTO SchoolPro. I had an Xacto brand one before and it lasted years. I've already gone through two of these though. The second one I ordered, well, it keeps running and doesn't shut off when you take out the pencil. So the kids have learned to plug it in, sharpen, then uplug it. It's annoying. Does anyone else have this problem? But it sharpens well and is not too loud.
I have this old skool CD player. I've had it for years in my art room. I only play the radio. It's neutral and the kids like it. I've had kids argue back in the day over playing their own music so having one radio station solved that problem. Plus we get to hear the news and traffic reports, lol.
4. Boot tray
I live in Canada and they sell these large plastic boot trays. It's for holding messy snowy boots. But I find it works well to dry my water cups and plastic lids (for holding paint) on. I've had this one for yearss. I just give it a good scrub once in a while. It sits right beside my sink.
5. Heavy boards
I use these boards to flatten any paintings overnight. I have a heavy book on top for extra weight.
I use this all the time!
6. Metal, cork-backed rulers
I used these in art school and love them. I especially love the cork back so they don't slip around. They last for years but the cork does start coming off after a while. I find these at some dollar stores for a steal!! The I stock up. I label them all with a Sharpie.
7. Heavy Duty Paper Cutter
I love this Xacto brand. It's big and does the job. This one is a 12" x 24" heavy-duty guillotine. My last one lasted for years, but then I stupidly decided to try and sharpen the blade and well, it didn't end well. So I had to get a new one. How do you sharpen these??? It was SO HARD to disassemble.
8. Hand lotion
I love the brand St.Ives and this particular fragrance (very neutral and light). The kids love it. I have it on my desk and we all use it. I stock up when they come on sale at Shoppers Drug Mart!
I have my special 'teacher' scissors that my students can't use. I've had the Westcott brand for many years and super happy with them. Again, I label them because scissors always go missing from my room!!
10. Drying rack
I have the brand: Copernicus Spring Loaded Drying Rack. It only holds a couple of classes worth of work (20 shelves) but I try not to paint with every class each day so it works well for me. I train the kids how to use it and this has served me well for many years!
Poster sized paper barely fits in it, though.
I hope this list helped you! I'd love to hear what common items you use and love everyday!