Best Back To School Products

Summer is winding down, and though the kids might not be ready to start thinking about school, the parents need to be ready. Retailers are ready too, and there's a dazzling variety of products already making their way onto store shelves and online shopping carts. Your kids may not get excited about the idea of school and homework, but the right accessories for the school bag and the homework station can help to put them in the right frame of mind.

Of course, every child is different, and your decisions will always come down to your knowledge of your child, especially when you're looking at items that reflect a personal style. This list of fresh, fun, affordable products is a way to start navigating the locker landscape and finding the best deals. You won't even have to leave your house to shop; you can buy everything here from major online retailers.

Key: $ = cheap $$ = moderate $$$ = expensive (relative to other items in the same category).

The Basics
There are some things that every student needs, but you can still throw in some style once in a while. Getting the basics right starts everything off on the right foot!

Wite-Out Correction Tape — $ - Everyone makes mistakes, but not everyone needs to see them. Correction tape takes old-style Wite-Out and makes it more precise and a lot less messy. The cases come in different colors, and there are two to a pack, one for the bag and one for the desk at home!

Echolife Smiling Binder Clips — $ - These adorable smiling binder clips make turning in homework a little less daunting. They come in a package of 40 in different sizes, smiles, and colors.

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LockerWorks 3-Shelf Hanging Locker Organizer — $$ - Keep that locker organized and find a place for everything with this hanging locker organizer. It's thin enough that it leaves room for coats and bags, too.

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Special Touches
There are some things that every student has to have, but that doesn't mean they have to be ordinary. Why buy the same boring, monochromatic supplies everyone else has? Show off that personality with these variations on the boring pens and pencils in those other kids' bags.

Crayola Silly Scents 12-Count Washable Markers — $ - Most elementary school teachers will request washable markers on their school supplies list. Make it fun for the little ones and pick the ones that smell like fun!

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Paper Mate Inkjoy Gel Pens — $$ - With 14 different pens in 14 different colors, these gel pens make writing an absolute joy. They glide over paper like an Olympic ice skater on the rink. Yes, they're that good.

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Dual Hole Smart Phone Sharpener — $$ - Cell phones may not be allowed in class, but these colorful look-alikes are. They come in assorted colors and look just like a real smartphone.

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ZIPIT Monster Jumbo Pencil Case — $ - Pencil cases don't have to be boring! This pencil case looks like it's devouring its contents, and will keep the kids smiling every time they use it. These come in several colors.

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Yoobi Mini Highlighters — $ - Mark what's important with ease and convenience with mini highlighters in numerous colors and a convenient carry pack.

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Bag It Up
A school bag is more than just a place to put supplies. It's a daily companion, and it needs to be comfortable and practical. It also helps if the bag is cool, and reflects a bit of your child's personality. You want the bag to last, so it's worth going for a bit of durability as well as comfort and style!

JanSport Superbreak — $ - A perennial student favorite, this classic school backpack is available in over 50 colors and patterns, with something to please almost any student. It's reasonably priced and durable enough to haul a load every day!

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Vans Schooling Backpack — $ - Lightweight, cool brand, stylish pattern, lots of pockets, padded laptop sleeve, and a reasonable price tag. What's not to like?

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Kipling Challenger II Backpack — $$ - Lots of pockets, including hidden ones. Space for a laptop. Lots of style, great reviews. If your back-to-schooler happens to be female, this one will score some points!

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Patagonia Refugio — $$$ - If your budding scholar is on the rugged side, this is a top of the line bag with everything you'll need and the durability to keep packing the books year after year. Water bottle holders, laptop pocket, and lots of smaller pockets to keep life organized.

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Herschel Aspect Little America Backpack — $$$ - If you have some cash to spare and you're looking for top of the line, look no further. You can expect this to last a lot more than one school year, so factor that into your cost calculation!

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