Whether your child is starting at secondary school, heading off to primary school for the first time, or simply moving up a year, you’ll need to stock up on a few back to school essentials to give them the best start to their school year. Here are a few tips on the kinds of things you’ll need to bear in mind when buying the school essentials, alongside rough price points.
A good water bottle | £5-£15
Plenty of schools require their pupils to arrive with a full water bottle, especially for school trips and during the hotter months of the year, so it’s worth investing in a good one. However, there are lots of bottles that aren’t really made for school; some are designed to be sipped in the car, while others are made for dissolving sports supplements. Make sure you get one with a good solid lid that won’t pop off easily and ruin school books, and also opt for bottles that are free from PBA plastics – some research indicates these plastics are bad for children’s health. A double-walled, stainless steel bottle might be a little more expensive than a standard bottle, but it will likely last longer than a plastic bottle, and it can also keep drinks cold for around 24 hours.
A new backpack | £10-£40
The backpack is an essential school item, so it’s worth taking the time to find a bag that suits your child. Some of the things to consider when looking for a new backpack:
Find a model that comes with adjustable straps to give your child the best fit possible.
If your child is carrying a laptop to school, ensure there is a padded compartment to protect the laptop from any accidental bumps.
If your child is biking or walking to school, consider a brightly coloured backpack or even reflective patches to make sure they remain safe when they are close to the roads.
If you can, try to avoid a bag that ties into the latest popular movie franchise as your child could well be carrying this to school for a year or two and might have a new favourite film in a few months’ time.
Finally school bags can be pricey, so highlight the importance of not comparing themselves to others if they can’t get the latest bag.
A maths set | £1- £8
Most secondary school maths classes will require a 15cm ruler, as well as a compass, and a protractor – that’s that semicircle of plastic you may remember from your school days. You can pick these up fairly cheaply from some of the bigger supermarkets, but it might be wise to spend just a little bit more to get a complete maths set which also includes the usual pencil case staples such as a pencil, pencil sharpener and rubber. As an added bonus, these sets often come in a tougher case which will help it to survive being bumped about in a school bag for ten months of the year.
A roomy pencil case | £5-£15
It might be worth going for one of the bigger models, as pupils have to get quite a lot into these things. Primary school children may well have to fit a whole set of coloured pencils into their case, while secondary school kids may have to have a good set of highlighters, as well as the maths set stuffed into this case. Get one with a tough zip as kids often rush and force these closed at the end of a lesson. Also avoid a light coloured case if you can, as when pens leak (especially when kids leave the lids off), that white case will soon be a murky bluey-gray by the end of the term.