This fall, it’s fairly likely you’re in the market for a new backpack. Before you shop, grab your kids’ backpacks from last year and test all the zippers. Take a minute after you buy school supplies and make sure that all binders, folders and notebooks fit inside. It’s rare that she’ll have to bring them all home at one time, but it’s likely that she’ll be stuffing it in with a text book or two. And stick to my guidelines: your kids will need a different sized bag in preschool, Kindergarten, 2nd grade, 4th grade and 6th grade (beyond that, your child will likely demand, or not, a new bag depending on how style-conscious he is.)
When selecting a bag, do not skimp. The inexpensive, trendy and, often, commercialized bag isn’t strong enough to withstand opening and closing, filling and filling again. A quality backpack will have reinforced stitching and strong, padded straps. Make sure that the cloth isn’t too thin. Backpacks don’t break the bank–but don’t buy cheap.
We’ve been fans of Lands End back packs since the kids started school. They’re durable, washable and stylish. Lands End listens to the parents and kids, making the bags easier for the kids to use.
While at Lands End Style School on Saturday night, I selected Little’s new pack for this year: the My First Scooter. She doesn’t need to keep much in there for preschool–just a change of clothing. But come summer, this bag will be fabulous for swim days. And I know it will last that long, and longer. The boys, of course, have plenty of Lands End bags from Fill the Backpacks and other events of the past and we’re so very happy with them.
Need a backpack? Read the tips for buying a good backpack from the Mental Clutter Coach.
A word on wheels
A few years ago, wheeled packs were the rage. Before you buy, check with your school administration. Many schools have outlawed wheeled packs and your child will be asked to return with a backpack. Why? Wheeled packs are major tripping hazards and most teachers will share horror stories of children cutting each other off with their packs. They’re also very difficult for kids to navigate the hallways and bus aisle. Finally, the idea of wheeled packs was to combat back issues from children carrying too much on their backs, especially kids in our generation who carried on one shoulder. However, if you’re wheeling a heavy pack behind you with your right hand, you’re still stretching your back to the right side. Teach your kids to carry his backpack on both shoulders to balance the weight.
Thanks to Lands End and Mom Trends for hosting the Style School event. I was given a backpack in appreciation for attending.
© 2012, Julie Meyers Pron. All rights reserved.