Last week, my son started preschool. It wasn’t something that we prepared for, and honestly, it was a last-minute decision brought on by circumstances beyond my control. I never imagined that I would send my almost-two-year-old to school this fall, so to say that I was unprepared would be the understatement of the century.
As I tried to decipher the litany of paperwork, medical release forms, snack schedules, and supply lists that came in our welcome packet, I quickly realized I was in over my head. There are so many things you need when your kid starts school! I thought I’d share a list of five things that made the transition to preschool a little easier for us.
1. Mabel’s Labels
You have to label EVERYTHING you send to school, and Mabel’s Labels make that super easy. There are labels for clothing (we have to send spare sets), dishwasher-safe labels for cups and dishes, and tags for backpacks and lunch boxes. You can customize them and even allow your child to choose what design they want. We bought the Ultimate Back-To-School Combo since it included many of the labels we would need.
2. Wildkin Olive Kids Lunch Box
This lunch box is fun and durable — two important things when you’re dealing with toddlers. It’s big enough for me to fit a container for lunch, a few snacks, and a juice box. I love that the front pocket allows his teacher to leave little notes for us. She gives a progress report after every day and that’s the first place I look every day.
3. Wildkin Olive Kids Nap Mat
Trying to get my son to take a nap at home on a good day is hard… I can’t imagine trying to get him to take a nap in an unfamiliar environment filled with strangers. I thought this nap map might make that a bit easier, with a built-in pillow and blanket. It rolls up for easy storage and is durable. It must have worked — his teacher said he took a two-hour nap his first day!
Toms shoes are the perfect shoes for little ones. Our school requires tennis shoes with a white bottom so they won’t scuff the gym floor, and these fit the bill. I bought them a bit bigger so he could wear socks with them. I didn’t want to get shoes with laces since he can’t tie them yet, and these are cute and functional.
5. Some Books About Going to School
My son LOVES to read books, so I started searching for some books about going to school that we could read together before his first day. His favorite was How Do Dinosaurs Go To School? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague. You could also try I Am Too Absolutely Small For School by Lauren Child or Froggy Goes To School by Jonathan London.
What are your must-have items for back to school? Anything that helps make the transition easier?