Whether your child is returning to school or going to school for the first time, there is an awful lot to remember to buy. So, having three girls of my own, I thought I would put together The Essential Back To School Checklist to make the process a little less daunting and stressful.
Before heading out to the shops, I would recommend that you pop on to your child's school website and check the uniform policy. This will give you indications of the school uniform requirements - Colour, whether or not they need to be in the uniform with the schools logo on, and some schools require the children to wear blazers and/or ties. If your child does need to wear the logoed uniform, it will also give you the relevant information on a local stockist.
The best tip I could give to any mum whose little one is heading to school for the first time would be to buy the non-iron school uniform! Yes, you heard me right. There is such a thing! One less thing to worry about when getting the school things ready on a Sunday evening. ( why can't all clothes be like that )
The earlier, the better. School shoe shopping is awful .. and if you've not had this pleasure yet, you're in for a treat! I always go to the shops opening. I find it to be quieter and a lot less stressful!
x2 pairs of trousers and x1 pair of shorts for September can still be reasonably warm in the warmer weather.
x2 pinafores or skirts depending on your child's preference. Pinafores are great for helping keep those white polos white, and skirts are a bit easier for littlies to put on.
x1 trousers - Trousers are an excellent option in winter on PE days! Easier for smalls to get back on. They don't have to fight with getting their tights in a bit of a pickle!
Tights - The best tights that I have found are by far. Next, they're lovely and thick you can buy a pack of 5 for £14- £17. I buy these in September, and they last. My daughters have all outgrown them before they wear out!
Cardigans/Jumpers I would buy recommend buying one with the school logo and a plain one for spare (they often get lost/left at school)
Polo shirts I recommend getting a couple with the school logo and a couple of pain. Personally, I like my girls to have a clean blouse polo every day. I work full time, and I find this easier than worrying about washing clothes and making sure they're dry for the following morning.
I would highly recommend a proper shoe with a thick sole and not the slip-on ballerina pump style. I have found these don't last as long and are not that great. Also, they slip off little feet easily when running. Shoes for boys look for ones that resemble trainers and are very robust. After all, boys will be boys!
Those little growing footsies need proper support.
Chelsea boots are fantastic for winter for both girls and boys!
I would highly recommend you double up! Schools like the children to always have a PE kit at school at all times. I have found ASDA George to be the best price for a PE kit! I managed to get two sets for around £10, including delivery.
x2 Shorts or a Skort
x2 White round neck Tshirts
Drawstring bag to store it in. Your child can leave this on their peg in the cloakroom.
I have lost count of how many times my girls have lost their pe kits! So I always ask them to bring it home on a Friday to wash. Or you can swap it over for clean when you are collecting or dropping it off.
Some schools require the children to have an outdoor PE kit too, usually, these joggers/gym leggings and a warm zip through the top or hooded jumper and outdoor trainers.
Rucksack -My daughters chose a rucksack over the little backpacks if walking to school, and your child like mine will be having a packed lunch. It is just easier to carry everything rather than separate bags, and it also has pockets on the side for her water bottle and suncream in the warmer months.
Packed Lunch Box/Bag- I would highly recommend you have a few of these; they don't always make it home! Another of my favourite tips is lunch box icepacks, which work brilliantly in the insulated lunch bags to keep the kids' lunch nice and fresh!
Water Bottle - To take into class with them with their name written on again, I would get yourself a little stash of these. They also get lost.
Coat - I would definitely recommend choosing a dark coloured coat, black or navy is a good choice. Those little cloakrooms sometimes coats end up on the floor, and you don't want to be washing a pale coloured coat every night!
I would also recommend you get a foldable pack-a-mac for school trips. They're even great for spring and summer.
Hat, gloves, and scarf for winter.
Sun hat for summer.
Pens, pencils if needed (not usually with the infant, junior schools)
Last but not least, NAME LABELS are essential. You need to label every item of clothing and a sharpie for the things you can't stick a label to!
Why not check out my latest blog post Awesome Parenting Advice for surviving parenthood without going crazy