back to school supply list

Are you looking for back-to-school supplies? Are you worried about finding something affordable and valuable? Well, worry no longer! I’ve compiled a list of my top picks for the items you’ll need to get started.

Back-to-school shopping can be stressful, especially if you don’t know where to start or what to look for. Luckily, I’ve done the research for you. This post contains a comprehensive list of things you’ll need to prepare for the 2022-2023 school year.

Should You Use A Printable School Supply List?

A printable school supply list can be a great way to save time and money when shopping for back-to-school supplies. By having a list of the specific items you need, you can avoid making multiple trips to the store or purchasing items you don’t really need.

In addition, many stores offer discounts on items purchased in bulk, so a printable school supply list can help you take advantage of these savings and load up on extra supplies.  You’ll be able to see just how many markers or colored pencils are needed for the school year as you shop at a store or online.

Finally, a printable list can also be helpful if you’re sharing the responsibility of shopping for supplies with another parent. By each taking care of a specific portion of the list, you can avoid duplication and ensure that all the necessary items are purchased. Whether you’re a busy parent or a savvy shopper, a printable school supply list can be a valuable tool.

Check If Your School Provides A School Supply Directory

We at Fractus Learning have children of all ages – in different parts of the United States.  We, therefore, have experience with a wide range of teachers and classrooms.  Among us, we have children in kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, and high school – all the way to college.

Most schools offer custom school supply lists for their particular school. There are sometimes items required on that list that are specific to your child’s school.  For example, my children were required to purchase headphones with microphones approved by my child’s school – they had to be bought at school on the first day.

  However, we’ve found that most of these lists include a fairly standard set of school supplies – appropriate for the grade level. 

While you should do a quick search of your school’s name + “school supply list” as we get closer to the first day of school, you’ll find our FREE printable school supplies list.

photo of adorable sweet student girl wear white zip shirt smiling holding copybooks isolated yellow color background

School Supplies List By Grade:

Putting together a school supplies list can be a daunting task. There are so many things to consider when purchasing school supplies. It can be overwhelming. However, when you have a plan, everything becomes easier. This is why I created this list by grade level.

Look for our new lists to come out shortly. Download these school shopping lists and use them when you are preparing for the new school year.  I hope this helps you out! 

  • Kindergarten School Supplies List
  • First Grade School Supplies List
  • Second Grade School Supplies List
  • Third Grade School Supplies List
  • Fourth Grade School Supply List
  • Fifth Grade School Supplies List
  • Sixth Grade School Supplies List
  • Seventh Grade School Supplies List
  • Eighth Grade School Supply List
  • High School Supplies List
  • College School Supplies List

Where To Shop For School Supplies

 There are a few different tactics you can take when shopping for school supplies.  Which one is right for you will depend on your time, energy, the number of kids you have and money.

  1. You Can Purchase Prepackaged Supply Kits For School
  2. You Can Shop Online
  3. You Can Take Your Kids Shopping at Local Stores

Purchase Prepackaged Supply Kits For School

If your time is valuable, you should look at purchasing a prepackaged school supply kit.  Sometimes your school will partner with a company to provide a personalized kit.  Even if that option isn’t available, there are plenty of choices on Amazon and elsewhere of kits that capture most all of the basic supplies your child will need.

Here’s a list of supply kits.  Keep an eye out for quality and price – there’s a wide range for both available for sale.  Some of these kits have a hefty markup for the convenience of not having to shop for the individual essential supplies on your own.  There’s nothing wrong with that; just make sure you are aware before hitting the buy button.

Shop Online For School Supplies

Shopping for school supplies can be a hassle. You have to battle the crowds at the store, lug all of your purchases home, and hope that you remembered everything on your list. But what if there was a better way?

Shopping for school supplies online has a number of advantages. First, you can shop from the comfort of your own home. No crowds to confront or lines to wait in.

Second, online retailers often offer competitive prices, and you can easily compare prices between sites to find the best deals. Third, shopping online is convenient and easy to do.  You can even have your middle school kids or high school students use your account to buy things off the school shopping list – just make sure you check their work before you enter your credit card info!

There are still some downsides to buying school supplies online. One downside is that it can be difficult to find exactly what school items you need. When shopping online, you may not be able to see the product in person before purchasing it, which can make it hard to know if you’re getting what you need.

Additionally, online shopping can be expensive. Oftentimes, businesses will charge more for shipping and handling when you order items online.  Online retailers no longer always have the best price like they used to a few years ago.  That backpack might actually be cheaper at a local retailer – and you wouldn’t know it!

Finally, online shopping means shipping – and these days shipping times are unpredictable. You may have to wait a few days (or even weeks) for your items to arrive, which can be frustrating.

For these reasons, many people still prefer to shop for school supplies in person.

Take Your Kids Shopping Locally

 There are several upsides to shopping for school supplies in person. For one thing, it allows you to see and touch the items before you buy them. This won’t matter much with a pair of scissors for example – but it certainly is important with personal items. Being in a store can be helpful in making sure that you’re getting exactly what you need.

In addition, shopping in person can be more efficient than shopping online, since you don’t have to wait for school supplies to be shipped to you.

The whole family can go back to school shopping when using a school supply list

Finally, shopping in person can be a lot of fun! You and your children can make a day of it.  Children grow up so quickly, and while you’d think the time spent together looking for glue sticks wouldn’t matter – it can.  Together you can explore different stores, find great deals, and meet other people who are also looking for school supplies. 

While there are certainly some benefits to shopping for school supplies in person, there are also a few downsides to consider. One of the biggest drawbacks is the cost. In many cases, brick-and-mortar stores charge more for school supplies than online retailers. This is especially true for items like a graphing calculator or textbooks, which are often significantly cheaper when purchased online.

Another downside to shopping in person is the time it takes. Not only do you have to travel to the store, but you also have to battle crowds and search for the specific items you need. In contrast, shopping online can be done from the comfort of your own home and generally takes far less time. When weighing the pros and cons, it’s important to keep these factors in mind.

Tip: If you do shop in person, don’t forget the dollar or thrift stores.  It’s amazing how many school supplies you’ll be able to find for cheap!

What’s the Best Time To Shop For the School Season

Back-to-school shopping is an annual tradition for many families, but it can also be a major expense. According to a recent survey, the average family spends over $600 on back-to-school supplies each year.

So when is the best time to shop for school supplies? The answer may surprise you.  Most people think the school shopping season starts in August.

Many stores start their back-to-school sales in July, but prices continue to drop throughout August. In fact, the week before schools start is typically the best time to find deals on school supplies. So if you’re looking to save money on your back-to-school shopping, it can be worth waiting until the last minute.

Of course, you open yourself up to the risk that some of your essential supplies will go out of stock – which can leave you in a pickle.  It probably makes the most sense to buy the HAVE TO HAVE items earlier in the summer and save the commodity supplies until closer to the first day of school.  

Tip: Remember to check what supplies you still have from last year, Many of the items are the same throughout most of the elementary school grades for example – so students can reuse pencils or erasers every year.

Basic List of School Supplies

You’ve checked with your school, and they don’t have their detailed school supply list ready.  Don’t fret!  If you’re not sure what basic supplies should be on your list, don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Here’s a rundown of the school essential supplies your child will need for a successful school year.  

You’ll need multiple of these items on your school shopping list:

  • Pocket Folders
  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Loose-leaf paper
  • Spiral Notebooks and/or Composition Notebooks
  • Erasers
  • Glue Sticks
  • Ink Cartridges or Laser Toner (for your home printer)

Most students will only need one box or unit of the following:

  • A Scientific Calculator or Graphing Calculator (for middle school students and older)
  • Pencil Pouch or Pencil Box
  • Three-ring binder
  • A Pencil Sharpener
  • Washable Markers
  • Box of Crayons (for younger elementary school children)
  • Reusable Water Bottle
  • A White Glue Bottle
  • Supportive Backpack For School
  • Pair of Scissors
  • Trapper Keeper
  • Colored Pencils
colored pencils, pens, markers - all essential school supplies

Other Items You’ll Need For The 2022-2023 School Season

 We’ve run through the all the school supply lists – but there’s still more your child needs to be ready to go back-to-school.

Back-to-School Shoes

 For most children, summertime means longer days, warmer weather, and plenty of time to run around and play. However, all that running around can take a toll on shoes, and by the time August rolls around, many kids are in need of a new pair for back-to-school.

There are several reasons why new shoes are important for kids. First of all, shoes that are too small can be uncomfortable and even cause pain. Additionally, shoes that are too worn down may not provide the support that growing feet need. Finally, new shoes simply make kids feel good. They may not be able to articulate it, but starting the school year with a brand-new pair of shoes can boost confidence and help kids feel ready to take on whatever comes their way. So if your child’s shoes are looking a little worse for wear, don’t wait until the last minute to buy a new pair. A little footwear shopping now can make all the difference come September.

Clothing For School

Most students hit growth spurts a few times throughout their educational career. When you are back-to-school shopping, look for new clothes for our child as well.

After all, they’ve likely outgrown their old clothes from last year and they want to look their best for the new school year. But new clothes aren’t just about looking good. They can also boost a child’s confidence and help them to feel more comfortable in their new surroundings. Elementary school can be a big adjustment, and new clothes can help to make the transition a little bit easier. So if your child is heading back to school this fall, don’t forget to pick up some new clothes for them. It will make all the difference in their first few weeks of school.

Glasses or Contacts

 The summer is also a great time to have your child visit the optometrist. Undected vision issues are a major cause of students falling behind in reading and math – how can you learn if you can’t see clearly?

It’s also best to get this out of the way now so you won’t have to take your child out of school for an appointment.

Outerwear and Accessories

 You probably aren’t thinking about colder weather yet, but it’s not too early to pick up a coat or jacket for your child. Don’t forget the hats and gloves either – they are essential in colder winter conditions.

You should also make sure you have the right size belt, socks, underwear for your kid. The more you take care of now during back-to-school shopping, the less you’ll have to deal with during the school year.

Lunch Supplies

 If your child’s school offers lunch, you might not have much to do here. But for those students that take lunch from home, make sure they have a good lunch box or lunch bag for the upcoming school year.

Classroom Donations

Most individual elementary school teachers provide a list of items they ask parents to donate to keep the classroom running smoothly .  These aren’t school supplies per se, but are still important.

  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Kleenex or other facial tissue
  • Ziplock bags of various sizes
  • Post It Notes

 Get Prepared!

The back-to school season can be a stressful time for parents. Knowing what you need ahead of time will help cut down your stress and save money!

We hope we have helped you with this years shopping list.

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