back to school must havesIt's back to school time, and that means there are schoolhouse essentials you've got to pick up before that first bell rings. Make sure your teen isn't missing the boat with this checklist of the 5 back to school must-haves.

1. The Outfit

The first day of school is all about setting the tone. Take your kid on a shopping trip, but let them make the major style decisions. Whether you've got a sporty, preppy, or arty kid on your hands, with a little bit of guidance -- and eye on your wallet -- you'll both find something to be excited about as he boards the bus.

2. A Good Backpack

Now that your kids are older, the books get bigger, and the snacks become more plentiful. She's going to need a sturdy option that will last throughout the entire school year. While sparkly, vibrant, or themed trends are fun, also pay attention to the utilitarian aspects of the backpack. You'll want to see this backpack make it to the next summer break.

3. School Supplies

Stock up so yours isn't the kid that has to ask others for a pen, or worse, a chewed-up pencil! If there's a list from the school, follow it closely. Otherwise, take your teen through the supplies aisle and talk about what they need for each class and extracurricular.

4. Lunch Bag

For most kids, the lunch bag is an extension of their own style. While you can control what goes in the bag, let them pick what's on the outside. With so many designs to choose from, no one will have to resort to the brown paper bag.

5. Calendar

How is your child going to remember when he has football practice? Or better yet, how will you remember? Keeping a calendar will help the whole family stay on schedule. There are so many types of schedule keepers, talk to the kids and figure out which one is the best option to help keep you all on track.

 

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