I’d be lying if I said I didn’t shudder just a little bit when I see that first “back to school” commercial on TV. Although I love the beginning of the school year because it’s a fresh start, that doesn’t stop the nerves of a brand new school year. Even though it’s still July, I have seen “back to school” signs in places where they sell school supplies. I walked down the aisles and everything looked so neat and organized, so here’s my advice: get your school supply shopping done now so you have first pick at the best materials!
Some teachers send out a list to every student with the exact materials they’ll need for the year. This is great because you can easily check the items off the list as you go. For those who are not given a list, here are some helpful tips that got me through school.
When I got to high school, I decided I didn’t need folders. I simply stuck loose papers in the front of my notebook (some notebooks even have built in folders). After a while, I had about 100 papers just hanging in my notebook waiting for me to drop it and fly everywhere. Having a labeled folder for each class is a great way to stay organized and ensure your papers stay in the same place. (This can also be done with 3-ring binders, but just make sure you remember to hole punch everything!)
- Different notebooks/Notebooks with multiple sections
By college, I decided to use one notebook for every class. Big mistake. I had to flip around the whole notebook to reference something from a previous class. Using multiple notebooks (and LABELING them) helps you stay organized and know where the material for each class is.
- Day Planner
This may be old school, but I firmly believe in Day Planner notebooks. I know we live in a technological age, but I find actually writing my days out helps me remember them better. This also gives you a great way to express yourself because the notebooks come in all different colors and force you to be organized.
- Note/Index cards (or a similar app)
Again, this is something that could be easily done with technology, but I used to make flashcards when I had an important test to study for. The process of writing the information on the card and then studying really helped me to internalize it.
- Lots of pens or pencils
My sophomore year of college I came to my first French class without a writing utensil. Luckily a fellow classmate had an extra, but I felt vastly unprepared. Be sure to remember these because some teachers can be unforgiving.
These are some of the supplies that helped me get through school. I realize everyone is different and these may not work for you, but I encourage you to think about what does. Spend some time before you go shopping to think about how you learn best, and then buy the supplies that will help you do just that. I know it may be hard to think about returning to school in July, but if you shop now you can avoid the crowds and then put it in the back of your mind for another month. You’ll also get first pick at the prettiest supplies!