19 January 2024

Whether you’re back at work, or still enjoying summer holidays with the fam, these warm days, summer evenings and adventure weekends make school days seem a long way off.  But, back to school will be on us before you know it, so I’ll be heading into The Plaza early to get everything we need to be equipped, organised, and inspired for the year ahead.

I love stationery – and I’m also a big fan of fresh starts.  While plenty of my kiddo’s bits and pieces can go another year, quite a bit has been lost, used up or is just a bit worn, giving us an excuse to head in-store to admire the latest back-to-school loot.

Snack n Slurp

Do you remember seeing the final school lunchbox at the end of the 2023 school year?  If not, be very afraid – it could be lurking in a schoolbag, planning to overthrow your household as we speak! Find it and send it on its way – into the dishwasher or straight into the bin if you just can’t face opening it and check bags, wardrobes and under beds for drink bottles while you’re at it.  If you’re in the market for lunchboxes or drink bottles, mix form and function with easy-clean options in their favourite colours.  We love insulated bottles for a drink that stays fresh and cool all day and bento boxes for sustainable snacking.

Stationery:  Stationery never stays stationary for long!  Every year – and regularly throughout the year, we need to top up the pencil case.  Where do the pens and pencils go?  Are they hanging out with the odd socks?  These are the questions science just can’t answer!  Shop around for the essentials on your school stationery list and you can make some real savings at this time of year.  Then, you can use those savings for a few more personalised treasures that they’ll want to keep hold of.  Smiggle is an absolute favourite for younger kids while the teens will love edgier or retro designs from Typo.

Tech Tools:  If your child needs to bring their own device this year, your school should have provided recommendations covering models or specifications.  Bring these with you when you head into JB Hi-Fi and the team will see you right.  They can also help if your teen is heading to high school or needs to upgrade.  From a non-techy perspective, also consider size, weight, and durability to get the best option for your family.  When looking for headphones, find a balance between quality, durability, and cost – and make sure everything is clearly named.

Worn Out:  Kids seem to grow like weeds over the summer break so take a few minutes to find (!) and check out their uniform – or school wardrobe for those in mufti.  Check out what you can find for wear and tear so that you can sort out missing, worn or way-to-small gear before the first day of school!  Even if your kids are in uniform, there are more footwear options than there used to be and that’s a great thing!  Don’t forget sunhats, togs and sports gear and get their names on all that gear too!

Get Carried Away:  Keep everything together in a sturdy school bag.  School bags have a rough life so we tend to get a new one every year or two to match their changing needs.  Look for wide, adjustable straps and watch the size – bigger might seem better but if your child fills it to the brim everyday just because they can, their back could suffer.  Multiple pockets are useful and if they’re taking a computer to school some bags provide a dedicated pocket, keeping their laptop safe while avoiding the need for another bag to carry – or leave behind.

1. Macbook Air JB Hi Fi, 2. Insulated drink bottle Macpac, 3. Backpack Kmart, 4. Books and highlighters Whitcoulls, 5. Sports shoe Platypus.

Even if you’re not a stationery fan like me (it doesn’t hurt that I can browse the latest books at the same time!), being organised early will not only make you feel super-organised, but help them get a great start to the year too.  And when you’re done – don’t forget to treat yourself with a cool treat from Plat Phillip – you deserve it!