10 Classroom-Approved Outfit Ideas

by - January 25, 2023

I feel like it's been a lifetime since I last posted an outfit roundup. It was before Christmas, making this my first outfit roundup of the year. Despite it taking me so long to get it all together -- it's taken longer than I expected to get back in the swing of things school-wise (I'm blaming Covid and the overall craziness of the holidays) -- this is a good one to start the year. With the exception of one outfit, all of these are things I wore to teach.

It has been a crazy start to the third nine weeks. The first six days were great, but then on day seven a storm took out the district's internet and it was almost a full week before we got it back. Because of that, pretty much everyone had to redo their lesson plans on the fly and a lot of the work I would normally do during my planning had to be done at home where the internet was unaffected. We do now have internet back, but I've definitely been playing catch-up on getting grades entered, etc.

So that's your explanation of the lack of posts here on the blog over the last week and why this post, originally scheduled for last week, is so long overdue. Late it may be, but it's kind of a good thing for you since you've got quite a few more outfits to shop. Let's dive in!

Sizing: I'm 5'2" and weigh about 140 pounds. I typically wear size 6 or small/medium in clothes and size 7 in shoes.

T-shirt (similar) / Plaid Shirt (similar) / Jeans / Boots

This was what I wore on the last day of my winter break. I truly have no idea what we did that day.

Sweater (similar) / Skirt / Boots

I wore this fun outfit for our first day back with students. I've had this skirt in my closet for a little while now trying to justify a reason to wear it. I finally came to the conclusion that I didn't need a justification to wear something I like. Granted, if I worked with elementary age kids who are more hands-on than middle school students, I would not wear this delicate skirt. It's tulle with embroidered flowers. The waist is elastic, and it is lined except for about four inches on the bottom. I paired it with my go-to thin black sweater and knee-high faux suede boots.

Sweater Vest (similar) / Shirt (similar) / Jeans / Boots

I'm a little embarrassed about how long this sweater vest has been sitting in my closet waiting for me to figure out how to wear it. It's designed in such a way that it can be worn (by most people) on its own, but for me the arm holes are too large and the v-neck a tad too low. That is to say that the fit on me is too oversized not to be layered, even in a size small. And that's where my struggle has been - trying to figure out what to layer it over. I'm still not 100% satisfied with this, but I received several compliments so I guess it works.

My shirt is old. It's hard to tell from the picture, but it has trumpet sleeves (smaller than bell sleeves but still a statement). I'm pretty sure I got this from one of the first StitchFix boxes I ever got. My jeans are just plain old straight-legged ones from Old Navy, and my boots are simple black Chelsea boots (still one of the best purchases I've ever made).

Tunic / Leggings / Boots (similar)

First things first: this 'tunic' is advertised as a dress. Realistically speaking, it works as a dress...outside of a school setting. I wasn't comfortable bending or squatting, especially when you take into consideration the age of my students. So I added my favorite soft leggings, a wide braided belt (that I can't remember where it came from) to cinch my waist, and some interesting boots. I love the military look of these boots. However, despite their thick rubber sole, they proved to be slightly uncomfortable by the end of the day. I was surprised by that, but looking back I'm pretty sure I've not worn them for that long a period of time before this day.

Blouse / Pants (similar) / Shoes

This might be my favorite outfit in this post, and it all came together quite unexpectedly. These gold linen pants are from last summer. I bought them on sale right before school started because they're pretty close to our colors. I've been wearing them very casually for the most part (I always struggle to dress up this style of pant).

Sometime before Christmas I ordered this pretty blouse. I've not exactly been waiting to wear it, but the weather has been so fickle that I've gravitated toward other things. This particular day our temperatures were near 80, so I wanted to make sure I didn't have a heat stroke while teaching. I pulled out this blouse and the pants caught my eye. I compared the colors and realized that the yellow in the pattern of the blouse was a near perfect match to the pants, and a start outfit was born! I know the picture makes it hard to tell, but the blouse is navy blue, which explains my choice of the tan loafers, which are still the best shoe decision I've made for teaching. I really do need to add more colors of them to my shoe closet.

Skirt & Jacket (out of stock) / Bodysuit / Shoes

I am loving the reboot of 90s and (some) early 2000s style! I've been exploring trend predictions for this year and saw that skirt suits are making a comeback. That was after I bought this matching set for less than $20. I had originally planned on wearing the pieces separately, but upon reading that skirt suits are in for 2023 I decided to go for it and put together this look that screams 90s to me. Unfortunately, I did buy the skirt and jacket on clearance and I can't find anything similar that I want to link to.

If you've ever wondered whether athleisure has a place in the classroom, I assure you it does. The trick is to be intentional with it, otherwise you'll look sloppy. These 'office sweatpants' definitely help in that area. They're insanely comfortable, but unless you're looking real closely you can't tell they're sweatpants. This is almost a carbon copy of the last time I showed these pants, except this go 'round I opted for a jean jacket instead of a blazer and my Adidas sneakers, which feel a little more classic to me.

Shirt / Jeans / Boots (similar)

Thinking back to my thoughts when putting this outfit together can't help but make me laugh. Some of my students are obsessed with the song Emo Girl by Machine Gun Kelly and Willow Smith. We were having a conversation about what being emo means, and one of my students said that I know what I'm talking about because I grew up in that era. He then proceeded to ask me where my black boots are, so I purposefully wore my "emo" boots with these jeans. Obviously you can only see the toes, but it still amused me.

Anyway, this shirt is actually a thin sweatshirt. It's really soft. The waist and sleeves are cuffed/banded but not tight. The lace embellishment at the top is only on the front. It comes in several other colors, but I really like this taupe.

Sweater (similar) / Skirt / Boots

I have to admit a wool skirt is probably not the most practical thing for the south. Our winters are rarely cold enough for thick materials, but I couldn't resist this classic skirt, and to be fair it didn't feel suffocating. I won't wear it outside of the cooler months though. The waist band has an elastic back, but the front is smooth and there is a side zipper. It does have pockets and a liner. My sweater is a very light pink. It's several years old so I can't link to it, but it's the A New Day brand at Target. They make my favorite light sweaters.

Sweater (similar) / Pants (similar) / Shoes

I'm on the fence about this outfit. On the one hand, I like the navy blue and burgundy. On the other, I think my shoes are too light. At the same time, I kind of like the unexpected deviation from a darker color palette. My sweater and pants are both old, but I found some really close options for you.

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