Back-to-School Trends Parents Need to Know

With students returning to the classroom, summer is officially coming to an end. Families are frantically shopping for new supplies, clothes and gadgets to guarantee a great year, and there’s a lot of information circulating in cyberspace on must-have back-to-school gear. With the help of some industry experts, my mission is to shed light on the latest trends in the education space for students of all ages.  From eco-cool lunches to desks that dazzle, here are four trends to take note of for a successful start.


Litterless Lunches


Eco-friendly lunches are all the rage with many families looking to help save the environment and some dollars at the same time. Going litter free is cool and students are more socially conscious than ever before.  Plastic bags are no longer the norm. They’ve been replaced with nifty products like fashionable lunch bags and totes, bento box containers, and reusable snack pouches. With many parents setting good examples, this movement is also hitting the workplace. According to Erin Young, CMO at "Many schools are now requiring students to pack a litterless lunch. Besides being better for the environment, littlerless lunches can also help you save money."

Cool Clothes – Don’t SWEAT it



It wouldn’t be back-to-school without fashion finds for the fall. Sweats are classic favourites due to their comfort and durability, but they can be stylish too. Redwood Classics Apparel, whose handcrafted, trending pieces are available at retailers across Canada, has scoured the globe for runway-worthy comfy styles that will rule the playground this season. “Sweats don’t have to be sloppy in order to be comfortable,” says Kathy Cheng, President of the made-in-Canada brand. “Call it the ‘new sweat’— they’re tailored classics that have been completely reimagined to be worn appropriately outside of the home. “

Get Organized with Family Calendars


Agendas and monthly calendars are long encouraged tools to help students with time management and organization. Along these lines is a new phenomenon: The family calendar. Fueled by the need for families looking to get their busy schedules in sync, they allow kids to know their routine, be active participants in their timetable and learn organization skills early on in life.  “This is a way that everyone is on the same page,” explains Sharon Neiss Arbess, CEO of Day Ja View Recurring Events Calendar. “Family calendars encourage communication.  Often we feel we are losing our kids to screens, so let’s put our phones away and talk about what we have to do together as a team.”

Stylish Study Spaces


Home renovation reality shows have piqued our interest in designer rooms and makeovers. While a study space needs to be functional, why can’t it be stylish too?  Students may be more motivated to stay put and study if they like their work environment.  I like to call it Say Yes to the Desk!  “It’s important to choose quality products that will last, and we have a broad assortment of products that are both highly functional and in-style,” says Heather Reay, Vice President Merchandising at Staples Canada. “To help inspire, bold geometric, floral, and chevron prints can be found on all of the essentials - binders, notebooks, pencil cases and more. Even chairs, which come in vibrant colours, are not only ergonomic but stylish as well.”


This blog post was originally published on The Huffington Post

Photos courtesy of, Redwood Classics Apparel, Day Ja View and Staples Canada


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Author: Joanne Sallay

Joanne Sallay is the President at Teachers on Call, a personalized home tutoring service with over 30 years of experience, providing one-on-one instruction in all subjects and grades. In addition to regularly blogging about educational news, strategies and books, Joanne is a busy mom of two.

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