You’ve stocked up on the kids uniforms. You’ve got them new lunchboxes, and you’ve near on fainted at the price of school shoes. But what about you? Have you got the back to school essentials that all parents need?

Organisational Essentials

I’ve just done my first year with two in school and the stuff you have to remember is insane. Trips, dress up days, library day, homework, assemblies. It never stops! These are a few essentials that I use to stop my life snowballing into chaos.


Life would be complete chaos without my weekly planner. Basically if it’s not on the planner it’s not happening.

Who needs a lunchbox, after school clubs, appointments, birthday parties, dress up days, emptying the bins, sorting the car insurance, cleaning the bathroom.

Whether it’s an event or a chore it goes on the planner. I write our names in the left hand column so everyone has responsibility for their own actions.

My planner keeps me feeling in control and keeps the overwhelm at bay

back to school essentials

Get yours from Amazon for £10.95


I swear I send my kids into school with money every week. Whether it’s for a non uniform day, a charity day, or purchasing tickets for a performance. Kids and loose change are not a good mix. If they don’t drop it 20 times on the way to school, or lose it altogether, they will forget to hand it in and it will invariably end up in my washing machine!

I always pop it in an envelope and put their name on it, so even if they manage to lose the envelope there’s a chance it will be returned!

You can get a pack of 100 for less than £2

Fridge magnets

So handy for keeping all the party invites together. Little has just finished year r and I had forgotten how many invites they get. He was actually quite disgruntled last weekend because he didn’t have a party to go to!

Get yours here


I can’t stand bits of paper everywhere. To solve this issue, I have a folder in my kitchen with the letters from school that I need to refer back to. I use it for appointments too, so they are all in one pace, tidy and I know where to find them. Plus any excuse for me to buy stationery.

Get yours here.

School Kit Essentials

The essentials you need to save you time and save the planet!


I think through trial and error everyone has their favourite method of labelling things for the kids, from uniform to water bottles. My go to is these labels from Snappy Tag.

A starter pack is £9.95 and you get 30 clothes labels, 30 labels for lunchboxes etc and 10 label covers for inside shoes.

They do not come off! Once I’ve labelled everything I don’t need to worry about them fading or coming off. And it’s really quick to label everything.

back to school essentials

Get your starter pack here


These tubs are so handy for snacks and sandwiches. I try not to use clingfilm or sandwich bags in a bit to reduce our single use plastic usage. These are fun and practical and I have a cupboard full of them. They are £8 for the set from Paperchase.

I love these dinosaur ones

And these!

Homework Essentials

I have picked up a few essentials over time that mean kids are learning whilst playing and a few things that make the homework battle easier.

Teachers Pen

My five year old is obsessed with what he calls teachers pens, as was his brother before him. In fact when Big was younger and wasn’t interested in writing at all, having a teachers pen was the incentive he needed!

You can pick them up in Poundland or get a multi pack from Amazon

back to school essentials

Maths Aids

Anything to make maths a bit more fun! My kids are very visual learners and these things have really helped.

Counting sticks £5.99 from Amazon

back to school essentials

Counting blocks £7.22 from Amazon. Little particularly loves as they use them in school and he refers to them as Number Blocks from Cbeebies. He quite happily plays with these for ages.


Big loves to write stories and drawer, and despite having loads of notebooks he wants paper. Not just any paper. A5 paper. Seriously, he would be made up if you bought him a ream of A5! I also got him these fasteners so he can make books with all his bits of A5 paper once he has written his stories.

£2.83 for 40. Bargain!

Health Essentials

As well as bringing home endless permission slips, my kids bring home all the germs and bugs from school too. These back to school essentials will be a lifesaver when you need them.

Nitty Gritty Comb

The rolls Royce of the world of nit treatments. This bad boy is the best and most highly recommended tool for getting rid of those unwelcome critters. I’m not itching, you are.

back to school essentials

Get yours here.

Sick Bags

There will be that day when one child has a sickness bug and the other child needs to b taken to school and there is no one around to help. On that day sick bags will be your friend.

£2.80 for a pack of 10 and much easier than carrying a bucket with you. I always keep a couple in the car in case of emergencies! Grab yours here.

Tooth Fairy

At some point the teeth are going to start get wobbly and there will be a visit from the tooth fairy. These tins are great for putting the teeth in ready for the tooth fairy to collect. And top tip… Buy two. It makes the ninja stealth exchange so much easier!

back to school essentials

£2.95 from Amazon

Reward Essentials

My final essential is some kind of bag filled with treats. I normally grab low value items I see, items on sale, books from Poundland. The kids have a treat bag each and get things if they have been really well behaved. They have achieved something at school. They were really kind to someone. Or they mastered something they were finding tricky like learning to tie their shoe laces.

Most kids thrive on rewards and positive praise and these work really well for us. They probably get something from it roughly once a week, and even though it hasn’t cost me very much, they are always made up.

back to school essentials

You can pick bags like these up from Poundland or here

I’m trying to come up with enough reasons that I need a laminator in my life. What are your back to school essentials for parents?

This post contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase any of these items by clicking on the links, I earn a small commission. These back to school essentials have been personally chosen by me because I own them use them, and highly recommend them.

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back to school essentials for parents to help you organise your life and have the kit you need when you have children in school.




Claire Kirby

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