January 13, 2022


It’s back to school time again, which means uniforms, pencil cases and books are all on the shopping list. If you have no idea where to start when it comes to school supplies, our handy checklist has you covered.

While shopping, sorting and cooking, and all the other related tasks that come with getting the family set for the first day back at school can be overwhelming, a checklist makes a big difference. To make sure that you don’t forget anything, it helps to have a comprehensive list on hand that you can refer to when your head starts to spin. Read on for the ultimate checklist you can use to send your children off to school fuss-free this year – there’s even a handy downloadable at the end of the article. You’re welcome!

Time to Shop

Before your kids start or go back to school, there are a bunch of supplies you need to make sure are all sorted. To start with, of course, you’ll need to buy new uniforms or potentially have last year’s clothing altered to fit your child’s current height and weight. Don’t leave shopping for uniforms to the last minute, as you never know if particular sizes will have to be ordered in or altered before the first day of school. Alternatively, if you’re purchasing uniforms second hand, it may take some time to find the correct type and size for your child.

Most kids tend to need new school shoes, plus running shoes for P.E. lessons and other sport activities, so allocate time to take them shopping for these. Other clothing items you’ll want ready to go are a hat, plenty of appropriate socks to match the uniform, and a coat or jumper. Don’t forget to check that your child also has a working umbrella, and a strong backpack that suits their current size. Since children tend to lose school items on a regular basis, it’s also important to buy some personalised name labels. That way, if your kids leave a hat at the bus stop or forget their jumper on the playground, you’re more likely to have the missing items returned.

When it comes to shopping for stationery, the list can be quite long, so write down all the things you need to buy before you’re overwhelmed when in a store. Stationery supplies can vary a little bit according to which year your child is in at school, but most kids will require some or all of the following items: a variety of coloured pens, plus some standard writing pencils; notebooks, folders and a diary to keep track of classes and homework; an eraser, ruler, pencil sharpener, glue stick and pair of scissors; some highlighters; a calculator; a library bag; and an art smock and/or apron. Computers are frequently used in the classroom these days as well, so many schools will ask students to bring a memory stick to save work completed during the day.

Things to Do

To be prepared for the new school year, there are plenty of other jobs you’ll need to take care of. For starters, book your children in for a haircut and, if needed, a doctor’s appointment and optometrist visit – they might need vaccinations, asthma inhalers, new glasses, or just a check-up. As well, take care of any school-related paperwork, whether that’s paying fees, filling out enrolment forms, or signing your kids up for after-school activities or daycare. If your child is starting at a new school, it also pays to work out their bus or walking route if applicable. Alternatively, you may want to discuss carpool schedules with other parents in advance.

Your child likely already has a lunch box and insulated water bottle from last year that can be reused, but if these are broken or too dirty to be cleaned properly, consider buying new ones. Either way, spend time giving each item a good wash so that they’re all ready to be packed for the first day of school. Also check that you have some handy small ice packs on hand that can be used to keep lunches and bottles cool during the day.

To reduce the morning stress when your kids go off to school (especially for the first couple of hectic weeks), it pays to have a list drawn up of the healthy, yet easily-packed snacks you have planned for the week. Glance over this list on a daily basis to make sure you have everything you need on hand. After all, there’s nothing worse than going to make a sandwich or wrap and then realising you’ve run out of bread!

Follow these tips and remember to take plenty of deep, calming breaths when feeling overwhelmed, and you’ll find the back-to-school mania more manageable than ever.

The Ultimate Back To School Checklist


  • New uniforms or altered uniforms from last year
  • School shoes
  • Running shoes for P.E. lessons
  • Hat
  • Plenty of matching socks
  • Coat
  • Clothing labels


  • Backpack
  • Name labels
  • Coloured pens
  • Writing pencils
  • Notebooks
  • Folders
  • A diary
  • Eraser
  • Ruler
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Glue sticks
  • Pair of scissors
  • Highlighters
  • Calculator
  • Library bag
  • Art smock and/or apron

School food

Things to Do

  • Haircut
  • Doctor’s appointment and optometrist visit
  • School-related paperwork
  • Pay fees
  • Filling out enrolment forms
  • Signing up for after-school activities or daycare
  • Work out the bus or walking route, or discuss carpool schedules
  • Clean lunch box and water bottle
  • Plan easy-to-pack snacks
  • Cover books


  • Umbrella
  • Tissues
  • Memory stick
  • Sunscreen
  • Tablet/laptop

Downloadable Back To School Checklist

Save this handy back to school checklist to your phone. Just press and hold on the checklist below and click ‘download image’ or ‘add to photos’ and it will be on your phone when you need it. You’ll be sorted in no time!

Back To School Checklist

downloadable breastfeeding checklist


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  • Thank you for this so helpful particularly with the rush of getting everything ready and not wanting to forgot anything.


  • If you are not worried about price then getting the bookpack through the school is quick and easy.
    You can buy cheaper elsewhere if cost is an issue


  • Great tips and list! I always seem to forget a lot, but this will definitely help me out next school year! Thanks


  • Great list! It’s so hard to remember everything. My boy started school this year. It’s been a learning curve!


  • Also add to the list – hair ties. As a PE teacher one of my pet hates is having kids try to do Phys Ed with their hair in their face.


  • Top advice here especially Optometrist and Drs visits. Appreciate the reminders!


  • As I start to focus on my little one starting school next year – this check list is perfectly timed. All the little things that can be overlooked. Thank you!


  • I had forgotten about clothing labels..


  • I feel exhausted just reading the list ????


  • Such a helpful and handy checklist! I find having a list to tick off helps me feel accomplished, not forget anything and come back to anything later on.


  • I love that there is a checklist! It’s so easy to forget 1 thing (or 12 in my case) and have to rush back down to the shops.
    I know it’s term 2 now, but I still check this list to make sure I have everything ready!


  • Thank you for a greats list.


  • This is a great list. I bought myself a laser engraving machine to label things because I’ve had issues with other kids stealing kids stuff and pulling off labels – but they can’t pull off an engraved name!


  • I love being organised. Thanks for this list :)


  • I used to get to excited and couldn’t wait to shop for these things with my kids. However my Childrens school supplies all the stationary so we don’t get to shop for any of it.


  • This list is very handy.


  • Now a days I just get the book pack from school, saves me a lot of hassle. The years I didn’t do that, all the personal items went on the big pile and shared with everyone and nothing was returned at the end of the year or items that didn’t belong to my child


  • Highly recommend an optometrist visit, especially before they start school for the first time. My eldest child was 7 before his first appointment and we found out he was severely short-sighted. Made a huge difference once he got glasses for the first time.


  • Thanks for the reminders!


  • Great back to school list. A rain jacket is always a good thing to add also


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