Here is a list of the best blogging tools for teacher entrepreneurs, or really any person working from home to build their business!
2016 has seen a huge rise in the teacher entrepreneur! So many people in the education field are starting their own businesses: blogging fun and creative teaching ideas, creating educational materials for TeachersPayTeachers, and all sorts of things. If you were born to be a teacher, you were probably also born to be an entrepreneur. You probably have great management and organizational skills, you’re creative and positive, you’re self-directed… you possess all of the skills necessary to be a successful business owner… so now you need some tools!
I compiled this list of what I think are the best blogging tools or must have items for your home based business that I personally love. This list could really apply to anyone who works from home so if you’re a photographer, blogger in another niche, or any sort of entrepreneur – I think you’ll still find this list helpful! I provided the links for you to see the tools I recommend directly on Amazon – some links are affiliate links which means I get commission if you buy from the links, it’s no extra cost for you but I just wanted to let you know! 🙂
My absolute favorite thing I’ve purchased is my vertical mouse. I didn’t even know these existed until I was getting a lot of pain in my wrist and lower arm and was researching solutions. I tried carpal tunnel exercises and resting but nothing really worked… until I found this mouse! The first couple times I tried it, I didn’t like it and thought it was too big for my hand. Now I don’t think I’d use the computer without it. It glides really easily, is super easy to use, and I have no wrist pain anymore! When I tried my old mouse or try to use my laptop’s pad, my wrist pain comes back immediately so I know this mouse was worth every penny.
Another thing I can’t recommend enough is a quality office chair. Do not, I repeat do not, sit on your couch hunched over for hours. You don’t have to work in an office – roll your chair into the living room in front of the T.V. so you can still watch your favorites. This is the chair I have and love but I highly recommend you go in person to an office store and try them out to find the one that fits you perfectly. Make sure it gives you lumbar support, is adjustable to fit you perfectly, and has you sitting straight up and down. I used to always work on the couch with my laptop and my back/neck hurt all the time.
Another creative option is this Gaiam Balance Ball Chair. They’re supposed to be great for your back! I don’t personally have one but I have friends who love theirs. All the secretaries at my doctor’s office also rave about theirs. I am really thinking of getting one soon! They have fun colors to choose from in the adult sizes and kids love them for flexible seating (I have a huge post of flexible seating options and ideas for the classroom) so why not us too? 🙂
I actually try not to sit that often when I am working on my computer. I often put my laptop on a plastic storage bin on a dresser (I’m super fancy) to create a makeshift standing desk. I also have a treadmill desk and bike desk that I LOVE. I vary my position all the time so I stay active. Sitting isn’t healthy so I try to do as little of it as possible despite how much time I spend on the computer.
I am OBSESSED with my treadmill desk. I have had the LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 for several years now and I love it just as much as the day I got it. I am not that coordinated so I was hesitant but I got used to it immediately. I usually walk at a low speed and check emails, do my pinning, check social media, write blog posts, or whatever else I need to do! I love the huge desk it has – there is plenty of room for my computer, mouse, and a lot of room to spread out all the papers I’m using doing whatever I’m doing. The treadmill desk does take up a bit of room but it’s so worth it to me. I have mine in the corner of the family room so I can walk, work on the computer, and watch T.V. at the same time.
I also have a bike desk! Not going to lie, sometimes I just feel like sitting. When I just want to sit, I sit on the bike desk. Sometimes I barely move my legs so it’s just a little movement and other times I super-peddle while working – I like that I can choose the intensity by just peddling or not. It’s really nice to have options! I actually find myself peddling really fast sometimes not thinking about it and being winded! So I like that it provides exercise too!
Another must have is a quality wireless color printer. I have had my Brother wireless printer for a few years now and I love it. You definitely need wireless – I can’t believe I ever used to come plug in my computer to print. It prints beautiful color so I really love it for printing centers and color activities!
Something I just recently got that I’m obsessed with right now is my electric hole punch! True story: I hate 3 hole punching things and was in an office store the other day and saw one of these. I didn’t know they existed! So naturally I went to Amazon to find it cheaper 🙂 and read reviews. This is the one I ended up with and I love it so far. I have already made so many binders worth of things with it because hole punching is so quick and easy now.
If you’re working on your computer all day, you need a good one! The most important thing to me was speed and battery life so I did a lot of research and tried a lot in store. I couldn’t find my exact one because I think it’s an older model but this Lenovo ThinkPad is really close to it! I absolutely LOVE the touch screen. I didn’t think I’d use it but I find myself using it all the time. I don’t use the folding up option much because I’m not a tablet person but I’m sure other people do. I just love the battery life on it because I used to be a Mac user and it was really hard to find a PC that compared in battery life! This is my 2nd Lenovo though and I really like this brand. I also really like the keyboard on this particular computer – it’s nice to type on and, well I blog, so I do a lot of typing! 🙂 It’s also SUPER portable. It’s so small and lightweight compared to my laptop before it. It’s been great to take on trips – I can use it in the car, in hotels, and also easily on airplane tray tables. What type of computer do you use?
If you take pictures of your products or pictures for your blog, you also need a digital camera! It’s okay if you can only afford a point and shoot for right now – they can still take amazing pictures and are easy to use. When you’re ready to get a DSLR, I recommend Canon. I have a Canon Rebel T5i and it takes really, really beautiful pictures.
Okay so this one is a little embarrassing but if your eyes ever hurt or feel strained from working on the computer, Gunnar Optiks glasses are great! My eye doctor actually recommended them because I was getting eye pain from working on the computer all night (anyone relate?!) so I wear them when I am working on the computer at night to filter out the glare. My husband may or may not make fun of me for looking a little goofy. 🙂
Last but not least, BACK UP YOUR STUFF. Definitely get some sort of back up to back up all of your files. You work so hard on all your creations, blog posts, whatever… make sure you back them up. I use a Seagate External Hard Drive but also back up by putting my things on more than 1 computer and on flash drives. I back up the back ups of my back ups. 🙂
I hope this post was helpful for you! These are some of my favorite tools that I use for blogging and building my business. I’d love to hear in the comments if you use any of these too or what other things I should know about!
As you may have guessed by the name of this site, I LOVE making lists. Check out some of my other fun lists:
Best Books by Behavior (great for teaching specific behaviors like tattling, sharing, etc.!)
Feel free to pin this to read later!