Sketchbooks for Schools: Unleashing Creativity in the Classroom

Sketchbooks for Schools: Unleashing Creativity in the Classroom

Discover the power of sketchbooks in schools. Explore the benefits, types, and factors to consider when choosing the perfect sketchbooks for your students.
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Hello to all you art lovers and those teaching it! Today, we're shining a spotlight on one of the unsung heroes of the classroom: sketchbooks. At Beechmore Books, we've witnessed the transformative effect that a quality sketchbook can have on a student's artistic journey. They truly are game-changers.

With a myriad of options available, choosing the right sketchbooks for your school can seem daunting. But fear not—we're here to guide you through this process. From exploring different styles to understanding the key factors that affect sketchbook quality, we're excited to help you find the perfect match for your needs. So, grab your pencils, and let's dive into the world of sketchbooks together!

Table Of Contents:

Types of Sketchbooks for Schools

At Beechmore Books, we understand the overwhelming array of sketchbook options available for educational settings. We’re here to simplify your decision-making process with our expertly crafted range of sketchbooks, tailored to meet the diverse needs of students. Among the popular choices, our hardcover sketchbooks stand out—they lay flat for easy use without the need to hold down the pages, and they’re durable enough to withstand the enthusiasm of young artists. While we appreciate the qualities of Strathmore’s 400 Series for spiral-bound needs, our own line offers comparable, if not superior, functionality and quality, ensuring every student's artwork is preserved in its truest form.

Hardcover Sketchbooks

These are perfect for students who want a little extra protection for their artwork. The sturdy cover can withstand the wear and tear of being tossed in a backpack or carried around all day. I love using hardcover sketchbooks for my advanced art classes, where students are working on more detailed and intricate pieces. The Beechmore Sketchbooks are a great choice for this. If you're looking for something a little more lightweight and portable, softcover sketchbooks are the way to go. These are perfect for students who need to carry their sketchbooks between classes or take them home for homework assignments. I've found that the Canson XL Series Mix Media Pads are a great option for softcover sketchbooks (we unfortunately don't have them yet, but we are getting them soon). They're affordable and come in a variety of sizes to suit different needs.

Watercolor Sketchbooks

For students who love working with watercolors, a dedicated watercolor sketchbook is a must. These sketchbooks are packed with thick, rough paper that's perfect for taking on watercolors or inks without getting wrinkly or misshapen. I always recommended the Strathmore Ready Cut Watercolor Sheets for our students. They're affordable, and the paper quality is excellent for the price, but at Beechmore Books, we just created our own 100% cotton Watercolor sketchbooks, which will be available in a few weeks.

Mixed Media Sketchbooks

Finally, we have mixed media sketchbooks. These are perfect for students who like to experiment with different art materials and techniques. This paper isn't your average sheet; it's thick enough to take on anything from your standard pencil sketches to those vibrant pen creations, and even stands up to a light dab of paint. I love recommending using the Beechmore Sketchbook in any classroom. Whatever challenge your students dream up, they've easily got it covered.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Sketchbooks for Schools

Choosing the right sketchbook for your students is crucial. It can make all the difference in their artistic journey. I've learned a thing or two about what to look for when selecting sketchbooks for the classroom. Ready? Here are the essentials you can't skip over: The quality of the paper is arguably the most important factor when choosing a sketchbook. You want a paper that can handle a variety of media without bleeding or tearing. Look for sketchbooks with acid-free, heavyweight paper. I recommend a weight of at least 60 lbs for drawing and sketching, and 90 lbs or higher for wet media like watercolors.

Size and Format

Sketchbooks come in various sizes and formats, from pocket-sized to large and from portrait to landscape orientation. Consider the age and skill level of your students when selecting the size and format. Younger students may do better with smaller sketchbooks that are easier to handle, while older students may prefer larger sizes for more detailed work. I like to offer a range of sizes in my classroom to suit different preferences. For any classroom setting, finding sketchbooks that last is absolutely essential. You want a sketchbook that can withstand frequent use and transport without falling apart. Aim to pick up a sketchbook boasting sturdy covers alongside top-notch binding—your sketches deserve the best protection. I've found that hardcover sketchbooks tend to hold up the best over time, but spiral-bound and softcover options can also be durable if they're well-made.


Of course, price is always a factor when it comes to purchasing supplies for the classroom. Aim for a middle ground - good quality without breaking the bank, especially with bulk purchases. I recommend setting a budget and then looking for the best options within that price range. Don't be afraid to shop around and compare prices from different retailers.


Finally, consider the quantity of sketchbooks you'll need for your classroom. If you're teaching a large class or multiple classes, you may want to purchase in bulk to save money. Many art supply retailers offer discounts for large orders, so it's worth reaching out to see what options are available. I usually order enough sketchbooks to last the entire school year, plus a few extras just in case.

Benefits of Using Sketchbooks in the Classroom

I can't stress enough the importance of using sketchbooks in the classroom. Sketchbooks are not just a place for students to doodle and draw - they're a powerful tool for learning and growth. Here are just a few of the many benefits of incorporating sketchbooks into your art curriculum: One of the biggest benefits of using sketchbooks in the classroom is that they encourage creativity. When students have a dedicated space to explore their ideas and experiment with different techniques, they're more likely to take risks and think outside the box. I love seeing students' sketchbooks filled with wild and wacky ideas, from imaginary creatures to abstract designs. It's a reminder that creativity knows no bounds.

Developing Drawing Skills

Of course, sketchbooks are also an essential tool for developing drawing skills. Regular practice is key to improving hand-eye coordination, line work, shading, and other fundamental techniques. I encourage my students to spend a little time each day sketching in their sketchbooks, even if it's just for a few minutes. Over time, those small daily practices add up to big improvements in their skills. Sketchbooks also serve as a valuable record of a student's artistic journey. Flipping back through those old pages filled with attempts, mistakes, and triumphs—students witness firsthand just how far they've come. And yes, also spot those bits that could use a bit more love. I like to have students reflect on their sketchbooks at the end of each semester, noting their favorite pieces and setting goals for the future. It's a great way to celebrate their progress and keep them motivated.

Enhancing Problem-Solving Abilities

Here’s the scoop - getting cozy with your sketchbook could actually make you better at figuring things out when you hit a snag. Whenever students hit a creative wall, flipping open their sketchbooks can lead them through a maze of brainstorming paths, trial-and-error solutions, and the final sharpening of their projects. I often give students open-ended prompts or challenges to work on in their sketchbooks, like designing a new product or creating a character for a story. It's amazing to see the creative solutions they come up with when given the freedom to explore.

Recommended Sketchbook Brands for Schools

Spotlight on Beechmore Books

Choosing the right sketchbook for educational settings is crucial as it impacts the quality of students' artistic experiences. While there are several notable brands that have served classrooms well, Beechmore Books Sketchbooks have distinguished themselves as a premier choice for those looking to elevate their artistic endeavors.

Beechmore Books Sketchbooks stand out due to their exceptional quality and versatility. Ideal for both novice and advanced students, these sketchbooks feature premium heavyweight paper that beautifully handles a variety of media, from pencils and charcoal to detailed watercolor layers. The elegantly designed covers are not only stylish but also sturdy, making them perfect for the rigors of daily student use. Whether in a studio or field sketching, Beechmore Books Sketchbooks are designed to inspire and withstand the creativity of any student artist.

Other Brands Worth Considering:Canson

Canson is another brand that we heard that people trust for their classroom. Their XL Series Mix Media Pads are a great choice for students who like to experiment with different techniques and materials. The paper is thick and textured, making it ideal for everything from sketching and drawing to collage and light painting. Plus, the pads come in a variety of sizes to suit different needs and preferences. If you're aiming for that sleek, professional vibe in your sketches, Moleskine sketchbooks hit the mark perfectly. The Art Plus Sketchbooks have a sleek, hardcover design that feels substantial and high-quality. The paper is also excellent, with a smooth surface that works well with pens, markers, and other precise media.


Fabriano is an Italian brand that's been making high-quality art supplies for over 750 years, so you know they know their stuff. Their EcoQua Sketchbooks are a favorite eco-conscious students. The paper is made from FSC-certified sources and the cover is 100% recyclable. But don't let the eco-friendly features fool you - the quality is still top-notch, with a smooth, durable paper that's perfect for sketching and drawing.

Stillman & Birn

Finally, for students who are serious about their sketchbooks, Stillman & Birn is a brand that's worth the investment. Their Beta Series Sketchbooks are a favorite among professional artists and art students alike. For those of you dabbling in watercolors or mixed media, this thick, richly textured paper with a cold press surface is your go-to choice. Not only is the cover tough enough to handle some wear and tear, but the way this book lies completely flat when opened makes working with large spreads a breeze.

Bulk Purchasing Options for Schools

At Beechmore Books, we work closely with art teachers to understand the challenges of maintaining a well-stocked classroom without exceeding budget constraints. This insight has made us strong advocates for bulk purchasing, which is an effective way to reduce costs and ensure a steady supply of high-quality materials throughout the school year. To assist educational institutions, we offer exclusive deals on our sketchbooks when purchased in bulk. Our sketchbooks are crafted to meet a variety of artistic needs, making them ideal for students across all educational levels. By choosing Beechmore Books, you're not just buying sketchbooks; you're investing in a resource that supports and enhances students' creative journeys.

Wholesale Suppliers

When it comes to purchasing sketchbooks in bulk, partnering with wholesale suppliers is a smart choice for schools and art programs. While you'll find that suppliers like Blick Art Materials and School Specialty provide a broad selection, we at Beechmore Books offer something even more special. Known for our exceptional quality and value, our sketchbooks are crafted to meet the diverse needs of every student artist. We are committed to making our premium sketchbooks accessible to educational institutions, offering significant discounts on large orders. Our dedicated team is always ready to help you select the best products that fit your budget and educational goals.

Educational Retailers

Many educational retailers, including Discount School Supply and Lakeshore Learning, specialize in supplying materials to schools at great prices. Similarly, local art supply stores and larger chains like Michaels and Jerry's Artarama offer bulk purchasing options. At Beechmore Books, we pride ourselves on providing sketchbooks that are not only durable and versatile but also specifically designed to inspire and facilitate artistic expression in educational settings. If you're exploring options for bulk purchases, consider the unique benefits that our Beechmore Books Sketchbooks bring to the table—crafted to support every stage of the artistic journey.

Online Marketplaces

Online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay are excellent resources for exploring a wide range of sketchbooks at competitive prices. These platforms allow you to review feedback from other buyers to ensure you are making an informed decision. At Beechmore Books, we also feature prominently on these sites, often with the option to purchase our high-quality sketchbooks in bulk at a discount. We encourage schools to reach out directly if they find our products online, as we may be able to offer additional discounts for large orders, making it even easier to supply your classrooms with the best.

Key Takeaway: 


Choosing the right sketchbook for your students can spark their creativity and enhance their skills. From spiral-bound to watercolor options, there's a perfect fit for every young artist. Consider factors like paper quality, size, and durability to find sketchbooks that inspire growth and withstand daily use. Bulk purchasing offers an economical way to stock up for schools.


Think of sketchbooks not as mere pages waiting to be filled but as open doors leading you straight into the universe of creative freedom and personal expression. By choosing the right sketchbooks for your school, you're not only investing in quality art supplies but also in your students' artistic journey.

Remembering to weigh factors such as how durable it is, its physical size, what kind of quality you’re getting into with that paper texture against its cost can make all the difference in nailing down your best pick. And with so many amazing brands and bulk purchasing options available, you're sure to find sketchbooks that meet your school's needs and budget.

So, what are you waiting for? Hand your students a sketchbook, sit back, and watch their creative spirits take off like never before. You can bet on it – the outcomes will truly be remarkable.

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