We are just a a few days away from the kids returning to school, whether in-person or at-home. As always, its best to get as much preparation in ahead of time as possible. Today we will take you through some essentials for your back-to-school checklist, which as we all know will be slightly different this year. With a significant amount of caution surrounding the sharing of materials, there may be some items that you previously didn't need to shop for, that should be on this year's list.


Organization and Baggage

Kicking off our list are the essentials when it comes to having what you need on-hand and organized for use throughout the day. Below are items that often get updated yearly or bi-yearly but seeing as many of us are starting fresh after an unpredictable school year with a lot of back-and-forth, ensuring all these items are new and stocked for a new beginning is ideal if you are able.

  • Backpack
  • Lunchbox
  • Gym bag
  • Laptop bag
  • Pencil case
  • Day planner
  • Binders and pouches

Writing Tools

Next up on our list of essentials are all the items you will need (depending on your child's age) for writing and working on projects. With the wide variety of subjects in school for both middle and high schoolers, ensuring all your bases are covered in terms of organization and need for different types of writing work will have your child ready for anything.

  • Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Black, blue, and red ballpoint pens
  • Coloured pencils
  • Highlighters (multiple colours)
  • Sharpies
  • White out
  • Ruler
  • Post-it notes
  • Notebooks or lined paper
  • Index cards or sticky notes

Mathematic Aids

The needs for returning to math class are minimal and very straight forward. While some schools allow students to utilize iPads, phones, or other areas of technology within their math classes, it is always best to be prepared with certain items such as graphic calculators and protractors as being able to use these items is part of what increases your child's knowledge in this field. So, we highly suggest adding the following to your list:

  • Calculator (standard and/or graphing)
  • Graph paper
  • Protractor

Learning From Home

Many students across the country will still be learning from home either out of necessity or personal preference depending on where you live. The difference between this year and last is that we are now more prepared from what at-home/virtual learning requires from us. On top of many of the items in the other areas of this checklist, it is imperative that if you are planning to have your child learning from home that you are fully prepared with all the items below for the process to be as stress free as possible.

  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Ink cartridges
  • Printer paper
  • Headphones or earbuds
  • Stapler and spare staples
  • Subject dividers
  • Small white board and dry erase markers -or- chalk board and chalk
  • Three-hole punch

Sanitary and First-Aid Supplies

In almost every backpack, locker, gym bag, and desk this year your child should have access to items that will aid in keeping them safe throughout the school year. Many stores where you will be doing your back-to-school shopping will have small size hand sanitizers, as well as mini packages of masks, tissues, and wipes, which will allow you to put together health and first aid bags for your child to keep in all the areas where they may need them.

  • Cotton face masks
  • Spare disposable face masks
  • Hand sanitizer (60% or more alcohol content)
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Tissues
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Band aids
  • Gauze


Lastly, here are some items that are helpful additions to every backpack and locker just in-case.

  • Reusable water bottle
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Combination lock
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Plastic folders
  • Glue


We hope the items on this list have you feeling a bit more prepared for the highly anticipated return to school! We hope you enjoy the last moments of summer vacation and maximize the time outside in the gorgeous weather with your children.