Looking to save time and money while stocking up on school supplies? Here are 5 simple ways to save on Back to School Shopping!
It’s August, which means we are in “Back to School” mode. I will have 3 kids in school full-time this year. Having done the school shopping with kids in tow for the past few years, I have found a few things that are guaranteed to save time and money.
I remember when I was growing up that my mom would take us “Back to School” shopping. I loved getting all the new clothes, but hated having to wait a few months until I the weather turned colder and I could wear those clothes. If your kids desperately need new clothes before school starts, there are some good sales. I try to keep my kids’ clothing fully stocked a whole size in advance. By sticking to a general kid uniform (a simplified capsule wardrobe), my kids clothing is fully stocked year round. Take advantage of the end-of-summer sales now in preparation for next summer!
Trying to find good shoes when you NEED them at a good price is nearly impossible. I check for clearance shoes every time I am out shopping and then check the list on my phone of what size shoes I need and stock up whenever possible. You can also found good luck shopping online in the clearance section and doing site-to-store to avoid shipping. I have even found shoes at clearance prices online when they were still full-price on the shelf!
I know it’s super fun to head off to school with those brand new clothes, shoes, and backpack. If you just wait 2 weeks after school starts to purchase those backpacks, you can save nearly 50%! Our backpacks from last year are wearing out, but they are perfectly capable of carrying the few papers that will be sent home the first couple of weeks. I know this won’t work in every situation, but for elementary school, it’s perfect!
Luckily our school doesn’t hand out a list of school supplies. You pay a fee at registration that will cover all of their school supply costs. Such a great idea! I totally take advantage of the great prices on school supplies though. With all the crafts we do, we need a fairly large supply of markers, paints, glue, etc. Stocking up on these items when they are at super low prices saves me money year round. I will also buy notebooks or other things to use as stocking stuffers at Christmas time. It’s all about planning ahead!
When it comes to Teacher Appreciation week at the end of the school year, I am usually completely burned out. It always comes at what seems like the busiest time of year. Add fighting crowds at the stores in December for teacher Christmas gifts, it’s enough to make me go crazy! I just started purchasing those things at the beginning of the school year and hanging on to them for the appropriate times. We keep it boring, but gift the essentials that the teachers ask for: Expo markers and hand sanitizer. These appear on teacher wish lists every year, so it has just become our standard gift. Super easy!
We made a rotating lunch menu last year and it was a hit! The rotating lunch menu simplified school lunch shopping. I would buy bulk foods that would be used over the course of the year. Large blocks of cheese were cut in slices and put in the freezer. Bulk lunch meats and bread, homemade jam, etc. are all stored in the freezer. My kids each make their own lunches (that way they are more likely to eat it!) and know to pull more out of the freezer when they use the last of something.
We also stocked up on things like trail mix and crackers to0. I circled on the back of the box how much a serving size is. This saved me from having to buy a million snack baggies and spend a bunch of time making little snack baggies. It also allowed us the opportunity to talk about serving sizes and fractions with the measuring cups.
So there you have it! 5 simple ways to save money as you head back to school this year!
How do you save money when school shopping?