April is the start of the new term for my daughter, hence come March and we get busy with the back to school fever. There is so much to remember and so much to do – like making sure that the uniform still fits and the swimming gear is still intact. And then there’s all the back to school stationery to purchase. I believe new stationery motivates kids and makes them enthusiastic about the new term at school. So here are back to school 10 school bag essentials for kids.
Backpack: I remember carrying a satchel for a school bag; well, we were 80s kids, life was different back then made of monochromatic and cheap school bags.
School bags make a statement, hence choose a cool and stylish school bag with your child’s favourite cartoon character like one of the Disney ones or Hello Kitty.
Invest in a good quality, light weight but sturdy school bag backpack that is comfortable and convenient to carry. Kids have a lot to carry these days – books (and so many of them), stationery, art supplies, snack boxes, water bottle, and then we have PT days and swimming days, so need to carry an extra set of clothes, swimming related paraphernalia.
- Buy a bag with many compartments as it makes it easier to store contents accordingly. Tiffin box can be kept in a separate compartment; less fear of a spillage and spoiling of school books. Also, check if there are bottle holders outside of the bag, again, it becomes handy for kids to take out the bottle when thirsty and an accidental water spillage won’t spoil the contents of the bag.
- Check if the bag is easily washable. I wash the school bag twice-thrice in a year and it comes out as good as new.
- In Mumbai, it rains for four months. To avoid getting rained on, buy a bag with a bag cover. Yes, many bags come with a bag cover at the back of the backpack, just open the zip, take out the cover and wrap the bag.
Pencil case: A good pencil case helps in keeping everything together. Pencil cases come in a wide range from plain essential pencil pouches to metal or hard rubber cases. Here are a few useful tips on pencil cases:
- Metal or hard rubber cases make it easier for pencils, pens, erasers, etc. to be arranged neatly, so that kids know where to find the pencil they need. Pouches are handy for keeping coloured pencils, sketch pens, etc.
- Buy good quality lead pencils, if you want, you can get your child’s name engraved on them. This way your child can easily find her pencils, even if misplaced.
- Erasers are a way of saying that it’s OK to make mistakes because then you can learn from them. You can get all sorts of erasers for your kid’s pencil case, including plain ones, coloured ones and lots of others in various shapes and fun designs.
Drawing/Art kit: Though my daughter has special days for art and craft, she prefers carrying her art supplies daily. Crayons, pencil colours, gel pens and highlighters help her be creative with her school work. Also, she uses them in her free time in the school to draw or doodle.
I prefer buying my daughter oil pastels as they glide smoothly. Gel pens help in colouring pictures in a jiffy with better results. My daughter uses highlighters in her school work, it makes the work look colour-coordinated, neat and easier to read too.
Sharp but easy to hold scissors, glue sticks and tapes are other few things that go in the art kit.
Notepad: A notepad is another real school bag essential for kids. Not only your child can write notes in it on days when she has forgotten to carry the subject book, but it helps to showcase your child’s creativity too. My daughter comes home many a day with short stories or doodles in her notepad that she makes during her lunch break or free time in the school.
Water bottle: There is a huge variety of water bottles in the market, which makes the decision of buying one very difficult.
To make things easier for me, I buy water bottles, which are BPA-free, have a narrow neck, but still easier to clean with a brush and which sit snugly in the side pockets of the school bag backpack. For small kids, buy a bottle that has a pop-up straw for easy sipping and that comes with an adjustable strap.
Lunch box: Whether your child is enrolled in the school meal program or not, you would still need to give a snack box for that small hunger that can strike anytime during the long school hours. The lunch box should be of good quality, easy to open and shut, BPA-free and easy to use and clean.
If your child carries lunch from home, she would need a spacious lunch bag that is easy to clean, comes with easy zippered closure and is spacious enough to accommodate a few boxes and cutlery.
Wallet: Wallet doesn’t feature in everyone’s school bag essentials, but it is quite an essential item actually. And you know what, this was a suggestion that came from my daughter. She asked me to buy her a wallet in which she keeps her meal card, snack coupons and sometimes a small change in case the school has requested. I find it’s extremely convenient to keep these small, easy-to-lose things in a wallet.
These are the basic back-to-school school bag essentials for kids. However, there are a few more school bag ideas that I think are necessary:
- Plastic bag/zipper bags are great for art and craft projects to be carried back home.
- Sheet protectors are ideal so that important school sheets or homework sheets don’t get dog-eared as they are carried around in your child’s bag.
- Children should wash their hands before they eat. However, it’s not an option that they always get, especially if they have gone for an educational tour. Having a hand sanitizer can be the best bet. I also give my daughter a packet of tissues/wet wipes and a small cloth napkin.
Here is a handy back-to-school school bag essentials checklist:
- Spacious and light weight school bag backpack
- Pencil case that includes stationery like pencils, erasers and sharpeners
- Drawing kit including colour pencils, crayons, felt/gel pens, scissors, glue sticks, tapes
- Easy to open and shut lunch boxes
- Spill proof BPA-free water bottle
- Hand sanitizer
- Notepad to encourage creative writing/doodles
- Zipper bags for art and craft
These were the back-to-school school bag essentials for kids. These are not just school supplies, but essential school bag checklist for your child’s return back to school. These help them be fully prepared and excited to start their new term. Just let them pick their favourites and see their enthusiasm skyrocketing.
Well, as I said, March is a busy time for me when I run around to buy back-to-school school bag essentials for my daughter. However, not this time. This back to school season, I bought these school supplies from SmilyKiddos sitting in the comfort of my home. Just a few clicks and tada, the supplies were ordered, delivered and labelled. What I liked about this site was that their products were different and not readily available in your corner stationery shops. So your child will have a great time showing off by saying, “What’s in my bag?” They are running a cool discount at the moment and you can get many fancy school bag essential items really cheap.