Your complete guide to back-to-school essential shopping

The new school year is just around the corner and with it comes back to school shopping. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of supplies. So, before you head on down to your closest shops to stock up on those classroom essentials make sure you read our hand 10-point checklist!

kids hat

Your complete guide to back-to-school essential shopping

The new school year is just around the corner and with it comes back to school shopping.

It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of supplies. So, before you head on down to your closest shops to stock up on those classroom essentials make sure you read our handy 10-point checklist!

essential back to school shopping list

1. Backpack

The first cab off the rank is a good-quality, comfortable backpack for your child to take their belongings to and from school each day. Be sure to get one that’s big enough to house all the essentials, while still being comfortable for your little or big one to carry around with them.

Before you hit the bag aisle, it’s worth checking your school’s policy. Some institutions have a school backpack or certain requirements. Regardless of whether your school has its own bag, you can’t go past a functional backpack for all those extracurricular activities, or when visiting friends.

lunchboxes

2. Lunchbox

With so many different styles of lunchboxes on the market, choosing the right one can be tricky. From bento boxes to single compartment lunch boxes, choose the one that’s going to suit you and your kiddo’s needs. Whether that is a lunch box with plenty of compartments or a more simple, easy to use design.

Make sure you choose a lunchbox that’s big enough to fit the essentials, sturdy enough to withstand daily use over the next 12 months or longer, and leakproof to contain spillages.

lunch bag

3. Insulated lunch bag

Keep food cool and fresh all day long with an insulated lunch bag. Make sure it’s big enough to fit their lunchbox and an ice brick. Some even come with compartments to store their drink bottle, making it a true all-in-one.

drink bottle

4. Water Bottle

Encourage your kids to stay hydrated throughout the day with a good quality water bottle. Available in a range of different shapes, sizes and colours, you’ll find bottles to suit even the fussiest of drinkers.

We recommend leakproof bottles to avoid wet messes throughout their school bag. If possible, choose non-toxic materials and a design that’s easy for little hands to open.

school socks

5. School shoes

Kid’s feet are constantly growing, so chances are you’ll need to pick up a new pair of school shoes each year to keep up with them. Shoes should fit correctly, be comfortable and fulfill their purpose – after all, they’re going to be running and playing in them!

Whether you choose more expensive shoes or lean towards a cheaper option, there’s no right or wrong approach, as long as they do the job properly. Don’t forget to pick up a pair of runners for sports classes too!

kids hat

6. School hat

A lot of schools have a “no hat, no play policy”, which means your kiddo might just miss out on precious playtime if they don’t have one.

If your school doesn’t already have a hat included in the school uniform, then be sure to grab one while picking up the rest of the school supplies to protect your child on the playground. We recommend choosing a hat that’s made of fabric that offers UV protection with a broad brim to keep the sun off their faces.

school shoes

7. School accessories

Once you’ve got your kid’s school uniform, shoes and hat sorted, you can’t forget about those other hair and clothing accessories that must meet the school uniform requirements.

Things like socks, hair ties, rain jackets and more often have to match the school colours, so be sure to check the uniform policy before jumping the gun and buying any old accessories.

kids laptop

8. School laptop

As technology-assisted learning becomes more and more prevalent, so too does the need for students to have access to a laptop or PC. Depending on the school your child attends, they may be provided with a laptop, whereas others may require you to bring your own device.

With so many options available, it’s important to weigh up the cost with the features available, such as battery life, performance and portability.

school supplies

9. School supplies

Along with the big-ticket items, you’ll also need to stock up on the smaller essential school supplies before your kids head back to the classroom. While some schools may supply everything for a fee, others partner with local stationery supply stores or just provide a list and leave the hard work up to you. If you’ve got to track down the goods yourself, your kid’s school should provide a list of what’s required for the year. Here are a few essentials you can count on being listed:

  • Pens
  • Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Pencil sharpeners
  • Highlighters
  • Crayons, coloured pencils, pens or markers
  • Calculator
  • Ruler
  • Notebooks
  • Binders
  • Folders

name labels

10. Personalised labels

After you’ve just spent big stocking up on school supplies, the last thing you want is for these items to be misplaced on the first day back in the classroom. To reduce the risk of your kids losing their belongings, we recommend picking up a pack of personalised labels so you can keep track of their bits and pieces. You can opt for waterproof labels for items like lunchboxes, water bottles and even school jumpers and hats that may find themselves in the wash from time to time.

You’ll be the most organised parent in the pick-up zone thanks to our guide to back-to-school essential shopping!

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