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A Complete List of Supplies for Your New Art Room

In the article Opening a New Art Room: An Art Teacher’s Cheat Sheet with K-5 Art Educator Allison Krook, we discussed everything you would want to consider when opening a new art room.

Today, we are going to continue the conversation and discuss another hurdle to overcome when starting from scratch, supplies!

Complete List

When you inherit an art room, you are usually walking into someone else’s junk. This can be very, very bad (we’re looking at you musty fabric and bins of dried out markers) but also very, very good (hello vintage printing press and previously donated drawing mannequins). Although you have to wade through some questionable items, at least there are some usable materials around.

Now, imagine walking into a brand new art room and having NOTHING to fall back on. You must order every single thing for your space. What a task!

Allison stated, “I started at the front of the catalog and worked my way to the back. I’ve always been a penny pincher when ordering supplies. I think I sat around with Sax, Dick Blick, Classroom Direct and Nasco catalogs for over a week comparing prices and adding specific items sold exclusively through each catalog.”

Here is what her in-progress spreadsheet looked like. Note that the prices on these are outdated.

sample supply list

We wanted to make it even easier for you. Using Allison’s suggestions and the suggestions of other art teachers, we put together these comprehensive lists to give you a solid starting point for your classroom, no matter what age level you teach! Download and use the ones you need!

And, if your budget is less-than-ideal, be sure to take a look at the Running the Art Room on a Minimal Budget PRO Learning Pack. You’ll learn how to extend the life of your supplies with effective ideas, routines, and systems.


Download the Elementary Art Room Starter Supply List below.


Download Elementary List


Middle School

Download the Middle School Art Room Starter Supply List below.


Download Middle School List

Once you have your supplies ordered, it’s important to make a solid game plan for keeping track of everything. If you’re looking for specific ideas, you may be interested in the Effective Routines for Managing Supplies PRO Learning Pack. Alecia shares how to keep track of what you have and what you need as well as how to organize things in a way that works for you.

High School Drawing/Painting

Download the High School Drawing and Painting Course Supply Lists below.


Download Drawing/Painting List


High School Ceramics/Printmaking

Download the High School Ceramics and Printmaking Course Supply Lists below.


Download Ceramics/Printmaking List


Furniture, Equipment, and Instructional Materials

Download the Furniture, Equipment, and Instructional Materials List below.


Download Materials List


Allison’s advice to anyone who is opening a new classroom is to order everything you THINK you might need (and even a little more) because you WILL leave something off of your list. If you’ve ordered slightly more than enough the first year, then you will have room in your budget the following year to add the items you still need.

Even if you aren’t opening a new art room, the list might inspire you to add to your growing collection of supplies, that is, when the budget allows!

What would you add to this starter list?

How do you organize your supply order?

Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.

Jessica Balsley is AOEU’s Founder and a former AOEU Writer and elementary art educator. She is passionate about helping art teachers enhance their lives and careers through relevant professional development.