I am cringing right now as I write this post because I am not ready for school to start yet... but it is coming! Some of you have kids already in school which is crazy to me.
My son is starting kindergarten in about three weeks and I am excited, nervous, and a little sad. I don't want him to have any clue that I am nervous, so I am focusing on the things that I have control over so that we are prepared for the first day of school.
Here are three things that are making back to school shopping easier...
1. We are taking an inventory of what we already have.
There is nothing worse than going to the store to buy a new box of crayons and then checking out your craft cupboard when you get home and finding three other unopened boxes. We've done the same thing with lunch boxes or pencil cases or pencils in the past too. Currently we actually need pencils AND new crayons because our supply is dwindling and we have lots of crayon and pencil bits roaming around!
One way to take inventory is to ORGANIZE! Although I love to buy brand-new school supplies and school clothes, my budget can't handle me going overboard. By figuring out exactly what we need and what we can make do without... we make trips to the store easier and I'm able to set expectations ahead of time for myself (and my kids) so that we don't spend too much money.
Today I sorted through all of the kid's clothes and made lists of what we need and made piles of things to donate that we don't need.
2. We are talking with other parents in the neighborhood and checking out the school website for information.
I learned on the school's website that kindergarteners are given a bag on the first day of school. They aren't allowed to bring backpacks. By doing that research, I now know that we don't need a backpack on our "to buy" list.
I have also chatted with other moms to find out what sort of lunch bags their kids bring to school and what supplies kids are responsible for having so that I know that information ahead of time. Often the teachers don't tell you until the first day of school. Some schools share their supplies lists on Classrooms by Walmart so you can search for them there. I am hoping ours is on there soon! Check and see if yours is already there.
3. We are using Classrooms by Walmart to keep our supply lists organized and make online purchases.
Not only do we buy supplies for our school-aged kids during this time of year, but I also buy materials for my Mommy & Me Book Club and other activities we do with my younger kids. There are so many great deals on school supplies right now!
Classrooms by Walmart makes back to school shopping easy because you can do it all in one spot.
Parents can visit the Classrooms curated school lists to get started purchasing school supplies for their kid/s. There is a list for all grades. Parents can also use Classrooms to help fulfill their teacher's registry.
If you are a bit obsessed with school supplies like me, you might enjoy browsing the lists just for fun too. There are also some cool after school activities resources.
Signing up for parents is easy:
2) Click on “Parents Sign up” in the top menu bar.
3) Fill out the information
4) Then Click “Sign Up”
You can also pass this info along to your child's teacher. I wish we'd had online lists like these when I was a classroom teacher!
Here's how teachers can sign up:
1) Visit the Classrooms website
2) Click on “Teachers Sign up” in the top menu bar
3) Fill out the form
4) Press "Create Account"
Your School Can Even Earn Cash Back
A school can earn cash back when someone shops online at Walmart.com. Simply start your shopping trip at classrooms.walmart.com, choose your school from the list, shop online and earn up to 4% cash back for your school.
And as a bonus, Walmart’s partners at Lysol® will award over $50,000 in cash prizes to the schools that earn the most cash back between 7/15/2013 and 10/31 2013.
To check if your school is signed up, visit the Cash for Schools website.
If they aren’t registered, don’t click the sign up button as this is for school administrators. Instead, share the downloadable PDF “Free Cash For Your School” with your school administrator by email, or print it out.
If you're an experienced back to school shopper, I'd love to hear your tips for making back to school shopping easier. Will you share them with me?
Do you have any back to school shopping traditions? I'll be sharing a few of the ones we start over the next week or so and would love to learn from you!
Disclosure: Thanks to Walmart for sponsoring this post! All opinions expressed are mine.