With everything in our world in flux currently, even the traditional school model is bound to change. And for many school systems, it has already been announced that the learning environment will look a bit different. No matter how you slice it, there will simply be more virtual learning during this upcoming school year. Which means that the school supplies we normally shop for aren’t really on the list this year. So, with more virtual learning taking place, what should you be shopping for during this back to school season?
When it comes to virtual learning, we have figured out a few of the technological issues from last year. One of the big issues was the huge need for wireless headphones. Since we have so many children, and I also work from home, wireless headphones are a must for the kids. Nobody can be productive if a few of them are having calls with their teachers or classmates, and trying to talk over each other.
So, the first thing we invested in were some wireless headphones for the few kids who didn’t have any. Or who did have some headphones, but they mysteriously didn’t work anymore. As parents, I am sure some of you can understand my plight on this one.
The first set of iJoy wireless headphones we purchased cost under $20. They worked great for the younger two kids. But one of the older kids who needed new headphones also wanted a more advanced version. So, the iClever wireless headphones we got her were closer to $30. But, they have great sound quality, connect easily to all of her devices and even have light up LED lights around the ear portion for added coolness. Or, so I’m told!
If these are still a little outside of your budget, then the up side is that we have also been able to find wireless headphones for as cheap as $9 at Target. They aren’t as fancy, and you can tell they are more cheaply made. But they connect and will get the job done.
No matter which way you choose to go with wireless headphones, they are simply a must if you have more than one person in the house having meetings or doing school work at a time.
Tablets or Laptops
Let’s face it, the most expensive item on the back to school list this year will be a tablet or laptop. After all, your children can’t engage in virtual learning if they don’t have one of these items. Truth be told, we have purchased almost every single one of our tablets or laptops from the refurbished category. That is usually my preference because they are so much cheaper. And since devices have a tendency to not have a very long lifespan, I just can’t justify spending a ton of money on them.
This is especially true when our children are involved. They simply don’t take care of the devices as well as they should. So, if we purchase a used or refurbished computer, then I won’t be as upset when/if it gets destroyed.
Some of my favorite places to search for used/refurbishes tablets or laptops are:
But, if you prefer to purchase new devices only, I can understand that as well. One of my favorite tablet options for kids doing virtual learning is the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8. The prices for these will vary, but you should be able to get one for around $120 – $150. And my favorite laptop option for our kids happens to be a Lenovo Ideapad. This one is going to run you a bit more than the tablet option, coming in around $200 – $250 instead.
But, no matter whether you choose refurbished or new, tablet or laptop, please make sure to get a cover to protect them. This will help keep them operational longer in case of being dropped or stepped on.
Seating for Virtual Learning
Now that you have the technology required for your child’s virtual learning, the seating is the next category to take care of. If you have a separate place for them to do their school work already, that’s great! But, if you don’t, then you will need to help create a space for them.
One of our recent finds at a kids consignment sale just happened to be an old school desk that works great for our youngest child. But, if you don’t have a desk for your child yet, you could easily pick one up that won’t cost you a ton of money. That is, if you have somewhere you can easily put it where it will regularly be out of the way.
If that isn’t a viable option for you, then you could consider something more along the lines of a bean bag chair instead. These are really comfortable and easy to store out of the way. So are the awesome bungee chairs that fold up for storage and are great for children and adults. We happen to have a combination of all 3 for our kids. And sometimes they switch up where they work just to add more variety into their school day. Which is perfectly fine with us. Especially if it helps them focus more.
Since most of us love to snag deals on back to school clothes, we shouldn’t leave this category entirely untouched. Even if you don’t need to get your children new shoes and stylish clothes, there are some other items you may want to consider. When it comes to back to school shopping, you can still save money on comfy clothes for your kids. And heck, even for yourself, since so many of us are working from home now.
With us all working, and learning, more from home, we want to be comfortable in our attire. Yes, you should still get out of your pajamas. And make your kids do the same thing. However, you can get dressed in more comfy loungewear instead.
Some of the best comfy clothes to add to your children’s arsenal could be:
- athletic short set
- yoga pants
- funny graphic t-shirts for girls
- sleeveless muscle t-shirts for boys
- fuzzy socks with grippers
Getting dressed, no matter whether it happens to be in going out clothes or comfy loungewear, helps you to transition from sleeping to working. So, no matter what, make sure you help your kids remember they need to get dressed and ready for school still. Even if they are just doing their school work virtually from home.These are some of the best school supplies for more virtual learning this year! Click To Tweet
Virtual Learning Supplies Summary
No matter how you slice it, this year school will simply look different. We are all doing everything we can to navigate through this current situation. And our kids are definitely having a more difficult time adjusting than we are, because it is difficult for them to understand. So, if we, as parents, can make their lives a little bit easier, then we should. And this includes in the category of preparing them for back to school necessities.
So, when you are thinking about preparing for back to school, remember to add these items to your list:
- wireless headphones
- tablet or laptop
- desk, bean bag chair or bungee chair
- comfy lounge clothes
Even though your kids may not be going back to school to see their friends any time soon, they can still act like they are. And this will help them adjust a little bit through the pandemic until things go back to whatever the new normal will look like.
What school supplies do you plan to pick up for your children to help with their virtual learning this year?