In this Instructable, I will show you how to assemble an inventory that should contain everything you need for basic electronics projects including components, tools and technical phrases. I will also suggest projects that I felt helped me further my knowledge and understanding when I started in electronics.
There are many types of component that are important when building circuits such as LEDs, capacitors and transistors. All of these components are available at RadioShack or other stores and they are key components for a beginner.
Resistors @ RadioShack
I found this useful when making large LED arrays for determining which resistors I needed:
A fully equipped tool kit is definitely necessary for creating electronic projects. A small bag or container is useful in making your kit fully portable, which enables you to use multiple workstations.
Here are some other sites that will give you more information about basic electronics:
Basic Electronics by randofo
How-to Breadboard by amandaghassaei
If you find it too hard to source or too expensive to buy the individual parts, I would recommend buying a complete project kit which would include everything you need for that particular project as well as assembly instructions.
After learning the basics you can move on to more advanced electronics such as Arduino or Raspberry Pi. Both of these mediums offer easy ways to learn electronics and programming as well as strong communities that are willing to help beginners.