Get your kid ready for a successful time at school by helping them prepare a backpack that makes it easy to find school books and other essentials at the right time. Packing books in a backpack isn't just about the books themselves. You also want to keep in mind everything else a child needs for a productive (and fun!) day at school. Here's how to organize your backpack for middle school and high school.
Getting books into your kid's backpack is an important part of any school day, but you can't get started without the right backpack. Whether you're shopping on your own to surprise your child or grandchild or they're helping you pick out their backpack for the next school year, you want to get a backpack that really suits their unique personality.
For some kids that may be a streamlined, solid-color backpack, while others may choose a vibrant pattern or graphic print. Having a backpack that captures their uniqueness will give them the confidence to take on the school year.
Once you have your kid’s backpack ready to go, it's time to get packing. If your kid's heading off for a busy day, you want to first get in the heaviest, bulkiest books and binders. This will help make sure smaller and lighter objects don't get crushed in the backpack throughout the day.
Binders and books are generally large and heavy, so you'll want to get them into the backpack first. Arrange them vertically against the part that will touch your child's back.
Pack the books in the order your kid will use them on a given day to make it easy to take the right book out when the time comes. Make sure you don't forget any books, but if something won't get used, you can leave it at home (or have your child store it in their locker).
Books and binders will dictate the layout of the backpack. When you have those placed, you can bring in notebooks, folders, and planners. Any loose papers for notes or homework should go into a folder or binder to prevent inadvertent ripping.
Planners are key when it comes to sticking to a schedule. Kids can make notes or adjustments throughout the day and the planner is the place to jot down schedules and homework assignments. The planner should go next to the books and binders. Just make sure you distribute the weight throughout the bag so it sits evenly.
It's not just books that kids need during a day at school. Pens and pencils, highlighters, and erasers are all part of a productive day. Depending on their age and classes, kids may also need a pencil sharpener, ruler, calculator, stapler, or protractor. Then there are crayons, glue, colored pencils, tape, and rulers!
Needless to say, that backpack is getting stuffed. Organizing smaller supplies in a container like a pencil case will make it easier for kids to get to what they need without rifling through tons of loose papers and heavy books. It will also keep smaller items from getting crushed between big books.
Busy kids tend to have extracurricular activities or electives. Maybe your child needs her school uniform gym clothes, a sports uniform, or equipment like cleats or pads. If the backpack is big enough, you can get them in, so they don't have to lug around two bags.
That said, some extracurricular accessories just won't fit alongside those books. Set things like a bike helmet or musical instrument right next to a packed backpack the night before so your child won't forget it as they're dashing out the door in the morning.
Kids today need to take more than their textbooks with them. That's where those extra small pockets on backpacks come in handy. Kids can stow things like keys, a wallet, and even a phone into smaller pockets so they're separate from bulky items like books.
Do your kids wear glasses? Glasses and their cases can get tucked in there, too, and you won't have to worry about books crushing them.
Round out the package with other daily essentials like water bottles, lunch boxes, and snacks. If the backpack you get has a side pouch for water bottles, that will help keep the plastic bottle from getting squished between books. Better yet, tuck in a reusable bottle.
Those extra pockets are a great place to store snacks like granola bars or chopped fruit or veggies. Smaller items can come out crushed, but if you keep them separate from the books, kids can go in and grab a snack if they're feeling hungry throughout the day.
Help your kids get ready for a productive day by putting together a backpack that makes it easy to find books when needed, while also making sure other supplies stay organized. After all, an organized kid is a happy kid at school! The next step? Teaching your kids how to organize backpacks so you can sit back and relax on busy school mornings!