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For elementary school the emphasis is on art supplies. I’ve found that Crayola brand markers and crayons just tend to be better quality and teachers seem to prefer them. For younger kids, send extra clothes in case of accidents in a plastic bag. Teach your kids how to use hand sanitizer, as cold and flu season always wreaks havoc in the classroom.
Wide-ruled notebook paper
Art smock or old shirt
Middle schoolers struggle with organization. A pocket folder is a much simpler system than a binder for most paperwork. Teach your middle schooler how to use a calendar and monitor it daily.
Multiple pocket accordion folder
College-ruled notebook paper
Many high schoolers come to school with personal electronics but end up misplacing them when it comes to charging during school. Solve that problem with a power bank. Some backpacks and bags also have a pocket specifically for creating a personal charging station. In addition to the middle school items, aim for these, too.
Earphones with case
Combo lock (separate one for PE Locker, if needed)
Mariko is a high school English teacher who has three children, illegible handwriting and an obsession with mail-order artisan ice cream. She lives in Hawaii, but she makes a point to eat her way through big cities as often as she can.