Google The Unplanned Homeschooler: Go ahead, get your homeschooler a backpack

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Go ahead, get your homeschooler a backpack

It's almost time for back-to-school, and even though you are very happy with your decision to homeschool instead of sending your little one off to kindergarten, your child may still be expressing a desire to go to public school with the other neighborhood kids.

It's no wonder, really. Kids are inundated with the same back-to-school ads we see. The children's section of the library is full of books about so-and-so's first day of school. And those big, yellow school buses are truly fascinating if you've never been stuck on one for an hour with no air conditioning in the middle of August. 

But when parents stop and ask their preschool or kindergarten age kids what it is about school that they desire the most, often the answer is surprising and simple. They just want a cool lunchbox or a backpack like the ones they've seen in the stores!

My twins on the first day of kindergarten.

My twins went to kindergarten in public school. They got new backpacks and they both picked out a brand new lunchbox to take to school on the first day. My son picked Spiderman, and my daughter chose Disney princesses. I probably wouldn't have bought them lunchboxes if we'd started out homeschooling, but the backpacks have come in very handy over the years.

My kids have used backpacks to take books and crayons to doctors appointments, to carry clothes and toys on overnight trips to their grandparents' house, to use as carry on bags on airplanes, to store treasures in at home, and much more. 

You might not think your child needs a backpack, since they'll be homeschooled. But chances are, you'll find plenty of opportunities for them to use a backpack, and because they won't be dragging it around every day, it will likely last them for several years. If a backpack makes them feel more like they are doing "real" school, by all means, go ahead and get them one and fill it up with this year's crayons, pencils and other supplies. I promise, you won't regret it.