It’s the back to school rush! For some of you who have already done your back-to-school shopping, kudos to you. I’m usually a procrastinator, waiting for last minute back to school shopping the weekend before school begins. Earlier than that for me and it cuts into my summer time!

Here are my favourite Back to School Essentials 2014.

Back to School Essentials 2014


A good, sturdy backpack with plenty of storage options is essential for growing kids. The licensed character backpacks are cute when kids are in kindergarten but they don’t have enough space for books and they aren’t built to last. My favourite is the Dudley Fully Loaded Backpack – my son’s backpack from last year is still holding up! I also like the look of this backpack from Swiss Gear.

Back to School Essentials 2014 Back to School Essentials Swiss Gear Backpack

Lunch Box

There are so many options for lunch boxes out there, especially since many school are litterless. I love the idea of bento-type boxes but they just don’t work for my kids. I like The Fully Loaded Lunch Bag by Dudley. It has a strong durable handle, insulated interior, sturdy base and zipper and mesh pockets – five pockets for added storage capacity and organization.

Back to School Essentials

This Louis Garneau Extreme Rectangular Lunch Box in navy blue and green because it looks like it’s built to last. It has a grey insulated lunch box with front pocket top opening, removable plastic liner for easier cleaning and removable shoulder strap included. This one is available online at

Back to School Essentials 2014

Pencils and Pens

When my son was learning to write, he had trouble holding the pencil properly and his fingers would slide down the pencil. It was enough of a challenge learning to hold the pencil, let alone learning to print letters! The BIC Kids line helps little fingers learn how to hold a pencil and write properly. The line includes a mechanical pencil, pen and stylus and they offer a unique guiding line to help position fingers correctly. They’re ergonomically designed for kids’ little hands – both left and right-handed.

Back to School Essentials Bic Kids

Binders and Notebooks

Shopping for school supplies like binders, pencil cases and notebooks is always a treat because I end up buying supplies for myself too! School supplies by Hilroy, ave always been my favourite because of their colours and patterns.

Hilroy® Shape It Up™ Binder 1.5", Assorted Designs. Three assorted designs include strips, hearts and circles.

Running shoes

Kids will need a good pair of running shoes AND a clean pair of indoor shoes; velcro will come in handy for little ones while older kids can enjoy runners like these from Skechers.

The Skechers Skech Appeal line of sneakers are made in a smooth trubuck leather, synthetic and mesh fabric upper in a lace up athletic training sneaker with stitching and overlay accents. These shoes have a Memory Foam insole – do you have any idea how comfortable the Memory Foam is?! They’re like wearing your favourite comfy pair of slippers! Girls Skech Appeal – $63.

Back to School Essentials Skechers


My boys will look stylin’ in these skater style SKECHERS Vert 2 shoe. Smooth leather and perforated leather upper in a lace up athletic casual skate sneaker with stitching and overlay accents. Boys Vert 2, $56.

Back to School Essentials Skechers Boys 


Water Bottle

Every purchase of a Me to We product makes a positive impact on the world by giving a gift in a Free The Children community overseas, like clean water, school supplies and healthy meals. Look for your unique impact code on every product, and enter it online at to see where in the world your life-changing gift was delivered. Available at Staples.

Back to School Essentials Water Bottle

Pencil Case

Older kids will love this one! The Dudley Load N Lock Pencil Pod is a locking pencil case with resettable combination so you can protect your belongings from disappearing! My 10-year-old will love that his little brother won’t be able to “borrow” pens and markers from his pencil case any more!

Back to School Essentials Dudley Lock and Load Pencil Pod

What is on your back-to-school essentials list?



Maria Lianos-Carbone is the author of “Oh Baby! A Mom’s Self-Care Survival Guide for the First Year”, and publisher of, a leading lifestyle blog for women.

Write A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.