By Daisy Whitney
In addition to cool duds, kids also want the latest gadgets and school supplies. Good organization is critical to school success, says Stacy DeBroff, the Office Depot back-to-school parenting advisor and founder of MomCentral.com.
According to the National Retail Federation, parents spent an average of $443.77 last year on back-to-school supplies.
Here's how to make the most of that money:
- Look for an ergonomically-designed bag, like the Tug backpack, that fits a child's frame, she said. "The multiple pockets make finding anything from homework assignments to school notices and pocket money easier."
- Go Green. Look for notebooks made of recycled paper.
- Durable and flexible products are important. "We're seeing lots of items that will help your kids create effective filing systems," she says. Look for binders that let kids customize with folders and sort easily by subject.
- School on demand. If your kid misses school, ask a friend to record the class on MP3. "Look for an MP3 player with a built-in microphone, like the SanDisk Sansa MP3 Player," DeBroff says.
- Let them express themselves: Kids want to show their style with magnetic accessories, locker kits or magnetics photo frames for their lockers.
- Share files: A flash memory drive is never a mistake as it lets kids share files electronically.