Home » Back-to-School Essentials: The 5 Practical School Supplies Your Kids Need

Back-to-School Essentials: The 5 Practical School Supplies Your Kids Need

It’s Back-to-School Time!

It’s already time to start buying those back-to-school essentials.

It’s back-to-school time.


You have perfected your breakfast smoothies for those busy mornings to come.

Now is the fun (or not so fun) part.

I see you scouring the store ads piled on the kitchen table.

The kids are even joining in on the hunt.

For the newest and coolest back-to-school supplies.

But wait.

Psst…put the papers down!

Come over here for a few minutes.

I want you to have a look at these 5 back-to-school essentials before you make that list.

Have a look before you ask your kids what they want.

Because this is what they need.

These are the must-haves.

After all, you know what’s best for them.

(They may even WANT all of these things!)

ONLY Back-to-School Essentials This Year: Your New Mindset

back-to-school must haves
Get only the essentials

A lot of us have started to think about having only what we need.

We have had a shift in our mindset.

The past year has been a rollercoaster.

The pandemic was stressful for both individuals and families all over the world.

Making sure you and your loved ones stayed safe was number one.

And Making sure your kids were still learning and the household finances were numbers two and three.

It was a lot for everyone.

Now there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and things are looking brighter.

But there is still a lot up in the air when it comes to back-to-school and your children.

Will they be doing in-person learning, digital learning, or both?

These are factors you need to take into account when starting your back-to-school shopping.

The 5 Back-to-School Items Worth You Buying This Year

Whichever method of learning you your kids will be taking part in when school starts, one thing is for sure.

They will be mobile.

Whether it’s moving from one room to another at home (because you need TOTAL quiet for that Zoom meeting), going and from school, or moving between classrooms, your kids need things that will be able to keep up with their day.

And these essentials are totally worth it.

*This post may contain affiliate links. You can read my full affiliate disclosure here.

Essential #1 :  A Durable Backpack

A new backpack should be at the top of your list because well, all back-to-school shopping starts with the search for a new one, am I right?

Plus it’s a good motivator.

Weren’t you excited to start the first day of school with a brand new backpack?

Especially if they were cool-looking.

Here are some options that are both cool and practical.

You need to consider backpacks that are: durable, super spacious, have multiple compartments to hold all of their supplies, and are water-resistant. 

You may even need to purchase a clear backpack, depending on your kids’ school dress code.

Let’s face these facts:

A lot of the so-called cool-looking backpacks have only one,  a couple, or none of these characteristics. 

That means in the long run, that they are a waste of money.

Remember, we have changed our mindset.

But when you do find a backpack that has both what they want AND need, then you’ve struck back-to-school gold!

Essential #2: Portable Hand Sanitizer Bottles With Holder

If they are anything like my kids, they are used to reaching for the hand sanitizer at this point.

Sometimes they take hand sanitizer as if on autopilot.

Consider it a positive thing because life is different now.

These cute and portable hand sanitizer holders are convenient so the kids can sanitize anywhere, even when they don’t have soap and water available. Just attach them to their backpacks!

Plus, they are refillable!

So rest easy.

Your kids can still help protect themselves from illness even when they are not at home.

Essential # 3: GPS Smartwatch

If there is any back-to-school essential on this list that you should invest in, here it is.

Just from an overall safety point of view.

Maybe your kids are now at the age where they are able to walk to school by themselves, to the library, or maybe to a friend’s house.

If you are a parent that is a little obsessive about keeping tabs on your kids’ whereabouts ( hey, I’m one of them too), then this is a sound suggestion.

If they seem on the pricer side, please consider the features.

Some have a 2-way calling feature with video for convenient communication and one tap emergency calling. Others have options like “school mode” (no class time interruptions) and games for entertainment.

So all things considered, if you only want the important features of GPS tracking plus communication then you can find a smartwatch at a pretty reasonable price.

Essential #4: Wrist Wallet

Besides their school supplies, your kids have a few other important items to keep track of.

Like a debit card.

Or a house key.

Having something convenient on their wrist will give them a bit more insurance that these important items won’t be misplaced.

All they have to do is put it on in the morning before school and take it off at home at the end of the day.

They are made of stretchy, moisture-wicking material that is comfortable for all-day wear, ideal for a lot of play and after-school sports.

Also, there are plenty of color options for your kids to coordinate with.

Essential #5: Stainless Steel Water Bottle

The last, but often overlooked back-to-school essential is the water bottle.

I know your kids probably already have a water bottle they use, especially during the warmer months.

It’s also a good idea for them to keep one with them at school as well.

Your kids need to stay hydrated, even during the colder months.

It can also help them cut down on unhealthy snacking or resorting to purchasing drinks that are full of caffeine and sugar.

These stainless steel water bottles should replace your honestly, not-so sanitary and somewhat dangerous plastic water bottles.

Plastic bottles are impossible to sanitize because they are plastic.

They also release dangerous chemicals into your kids’ drinking water as the plastic materials break down over time (and, plastic bottles are usually not being replaced within the recommended time frame).

Plus your kids will not have to drink from a water fountain if they had their own water bottles with them (again, you want to keep them safe and healthy).

Your Back-to-School Essentials List – Done!

Now, the goal of this back-to-school list was not to say that you need EVERYTHING on this list.

However, there are definitely at least one or two things that are essential for your kids’ current lifestyle.

With a shift in mindset, these are some of the things that you should consider putting on your back-to-school list.

Practicality now wins over vanity.

(It will be a good lesson for the kiddos too.)

Essentials For Kids On The Go



  1. August 21, 2021 / 9:04 pm

    Can’t believe summer is almost over , my little one will be starting school in a week. Lot of great tips , will be checking out some of the products recommended in you post.

    • familyandglamour
      August 21, 2021 / 10:09 pm

      Yeah my kids have been back to school a week already😩.
      I’m so glad you found a few things to check out! The GPS watches are my favorite because I am THAT mom, lol!
      Take care!

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