A new semester is right around the corner, and if you’re like me, you’ve probably made some kind of resolution along the lines of, “I’m GOING to be more organized this year!” It’s nice to say–but hard to put into practice. If I had one tip for you, it would be to start now. Not later. Don’t put off the organizing as something you’re going to do as soon as the semester starts or as soon as this week is over, etc. Start NOW. As in right this instant.
Grab your backpack. Unload it. Look at what you have, and think about what you need. Not sure where to start? Trust me, you aren’t alone on that one! Since I’ve been in that situation more times than I want to admit, I decided to help you out by listing the things that I carry in my backpack–the things that I’ve found are essentials to be carrying with you during a school day.
I could not stress this enough. If you don’t have a planner and are serious about getting organized, you need a planner. Cute or boring, big or small–it doesn’t matter! As long as you have a spot to write down assignments and plan out the week ahead of you, that’s all that matters. (Though having a cute planner is a nice bonus–links to some I’ve found are here and here!)
2. Color Coded Folders
Don’t get me wrong, you can be perfectly organized without having color coded folders among your backpack essentials. I’ve just found that this is one extra step that helps me to really get my things together.
Feel free to do this one however you want. But–do have a separate place for each class’s papers. Trying to cram all your papers into only a couple of folders/binders or somewhere in the unending abyss of your backpack won’t work well if you’re trying to be organized!
3. Paper Folder
Nope, I’m not meaning a folder made out of paper like the ones we all used for our 7th grade science fair projects. I’m meaning a durable folder you use FOR PAPER. This one goes a loooooong way in helping you be prepared for class and keeping it all together during the school year. I use a plastic folder that I got for a couple bucks from Office Depot, and I use it for two things–actual paper and a few other important papers, like my finals schedule.
And when the teacher says, “Get out a piece of paper for a pop quiz,” you’ll be ready to go.
4. Personal Bag
Sophomore year of high school–I didn’t carry this. Big mistake. I needed it so many times but didn’t figure out until junior year that filling a little pouch full of extras would make the school day MUCH easier!
In my pouch, I carry: concealer, Tide-to-Go pen, oil wipes, bobby pins, lip balm, rubber bands, hand sanitizer, travel-size tissues, pain relievers and occasionally mints.
But don’t feel limited to this list! Add in whatever little knickknacks and random things that could come in handy while you’re away from home at school. I got my cute little pouch from Target a couple years ago, and it has been a lifesaver to have with me.
Why would you need a wallet at school? As surprising or weird as it might sound to some, you’ll most likely need a wallet to carry a few dollars (you probably won’t need more than $5-10), along with your library card and personal ID. I even carry my post office box code on a little slip of paper in my wallet. The cash came in handy when my school had a bake sale during school hour or when I wanted to buy a snack from the little station at the front desk. If your school has a vending machine, go ahead and carry a wallet even if you don’t think you’ll need to. Never hurts to be prepared!
6. Mini Umbrella
I live in Florida. And it can do from sunny to downpour in about 3.5 seconds. My mini umbrella has saved me from taking an unexpected shower at 9 a.m. many, many times! If you live in a desert area where it doesn’t rain unless a miracle occurs, then you probably don’t need it. But for everyone else, consider investing in one among your other backpack essentials– just in case.
7. Pencil Bag
This one seems kind of obvious, but I’ve encountered more people who don’t bring a single pen or pencil to class than people who come to class actually prepared. I’ve supplies numerous fellow classmates with a spare pen or pencil because they didn’t have any! I cannot stress how important being prepared is if you want to be organized. And surprise, surprise–you WILL need pens and pencils for class! In my pencil bag, I carry: highlighters, red, blue, and black pens, sharpies, pencils, flash drives, white-out and a big eraser.
8. Water Bottle
Along with your New Year’s resolution to be more organized, you probably made the resolution to be healthier as well. A good way to start doing this is by drinking more water. Invest in a cute but quality water bottle and carry it in your bag as a quick, easy way to stay hydrated all through the school day.
But along with your phone, don’t forget a portable charger. I 110% guarantee you’ll use it at some point when your phone is about to die and you’re nowhere near an outlet! Carrying a mini connector and charger is a must, at least for me.
10. Spare Earbuds
Walking home from school. In the library. During study halls. I listen to music everywhere I can, and having spare earbuds is always a must for me. I always regret when I forget them or don’t put them in my bag for the day.
Again, this is merely my list. There are several lists on Pinterest that–believe it or not–go into much more detail and include a lot more things than I’ve included here! But this is definitely a good place to start, especially for those who aren’t used to bringing a lot to school.
What are some of your backpack essentials for school? Leave them in the comment section below! I would love to hear what you carry during the day!
I wish you all good luck as you start a new semester!
♦ Xo ~ Kristel ♦