As those of you on our Facebook page will probably already know, last week Teacher’s Pet hit IKEA, ready to purchase some goodies!
IKEA has always been a personal favourite of mine, not so much for my own home but for my classroom.
So, I thought I would take the time to put together a little list of what I think are ‘must look out for’ items if you plan on heading there yourself. We also received some great comments on Facebook when our community were asked “Has anyone else purchased some fab IKEA goodies for their classroom?” so I have thrown a few of those in too.
I suppose I should mention that Teacher’s Pet has not received any sponsorship from IKEA – This is just something I thought might help…be warned, do not read any further if you’re trying to avoid spending your own money on school stuff (although one of our community members did share a great idea about this…more on that later in the post).
1) Gliss boxes – these come with lids and I LOVE them. £1.50 for 3 and I have used them for everything from art and maths materials, to stickers, snack money and challenge boxes. They come in a few different colours too.
3) Role-play – this little shop is made of strong cardboard and with a bit of imagination, could be used in pretty much any type of role-play area. Let the children decorate to match your chosen role-play. A bargain at £10 too!
4) Beads…the first time I saw these I couldn’t quite believe they were only £5 for such a huge tub. If you’ve ever been to the likes of Argos or toys r Us for these, you’ll know how expensive they can be. Great for fine motor skills and the children love that they can keep their designs once ironed.
5) Speech bubble notice board – I had never seen this before until one of our Facebook community members mentioned it but I instantly fell in love with it!
Carole A said “giant green speech bubble for me – just put my WALT and WILF on it today!”.
6) Hanging pockets are another great space saver for your classroom. One of our Facebook community members said they used them for book displays, which I thought was a great idea. Depending on how much space you have, you could have one of these for each table. I particularly like IKEAs broccoli shaped pocket – I’d love to use this one to house brainy broccoli challenges, for children to complete if they finish their work early.
7) Containers – another product that caught my eye was these little containers, designed to be hung from this matching wall rail. If you have a very nice caretaker and an outdoor space, I’d have the rails mounted outside, then attach the containers each day with different resources to use outside, such as chalks, magnifying glasses, little notepads etc. They would also make a great addition to the classroom for writing, maths or art centres.
8) Spice jars – these come as a pack of 4 for £1.90…bargain! Great for storing small items. One of our Facebook community members also uses them as paint pots, which I thought was a great idea.
9) LACK table – these little tables are by far one of my best buys from IKEA…£5! I have bought them several times over the years and used them in a variety of ways. They have made great outdoor tables for our EYFS classrooms. I have also used them in role play areas, as book stands in the school hallways etc but my favourite thing to do with these is to sand them and apply a coat of blackboard paint…instant chalking table. One year we even cut a hole in the centre of the table and added a chalk tub. My next project is to cut several small holes and use for plants…we’ll see what happens.
They also come in a variety of colours if you’re looking to buy a few.
10) This year, I spotted this new table runner…what would I want with a table runner right? Well, I was thinking it would be perfect for all different kinds of games. The runner is 140cm long and shows several large circles. I’m thinking maths games, phonics games or maybe just a bit of beanbag target throwing. There’s also a similar one with different coloured pears.
11) Paper roll – one thing IKEA is really getting good for is art materials. This huge roll of paper is a bargain at £3. I’ve used these many a time during our ‘All About Me’ topics. They’re great for outdoor (or if you’re brave, indoor) footprints, body outline drawings etc or they’re just nice to leave outside during play times. They do have everything from aprons, to scissors and easels so have a good browse.
12) Height chart – another new addition to the IKEA store is this sticker height chart…not only is it extremely cute, it would be great for measuring in EYFS and KS1! It reaches up to 140cm and would be lovely for the children to see how they’ve grown over the school year.
So that’s my top 12 (random number I know but I couldn’t whittle it down to 10)!
Happy shopping everyone and if you have an IKEA bargain to add to this list, let me know.
As an after thought…one thing we did also discuss on Facebook was how more and more we seem to be spending our own money on our classrooms.
Sophie M’s school does something interesting each year as a way to gain money to spend on each classroom, which seemed liked a great idea to me…
“We have something called a ‘Cake Crumbly’ where once a term (roughly) each year group sells cakes donated by the year groups parents and all the money raised can be spent on anything the year group wants – some cake sales make about £60 and we sell them at 30p each or 4 for £1 (we are 2 form entry so 60 sets of parents each year = lots of cakes to sell). We have bought all sorts for our classes, including some ikea leaf canopies and baskets!!”