School is in session: Must-have back-to-school items

Younger kids will delight in lunch bags featuring "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle.
(Courtesy of Funkins)

Credit: KER Studio

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Younger kids will delight in lunch bags featuring "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle. (Courtesy of Funkins)

Credit: KER Studio

Next week, Atlanta Public Schools, Gwinnett County Public Schools and Cobb County Schools will be in session. Fulton and DeKalb follow the next week.

To get prepared, this back-to-school list is chock full of things kids in grades pre-K to 12 will need to start the school year off right and end just as well. Since so much work and communication is online, we recommend visiting a popular technology retailer in-store or online, for laptops, phones and more, ensuring your kids can complete homework assignments and confer with their classmates about schoolwork.

We have an assortment of lunch totes, backpacks and fun stylish accessories to help make kids feel good about how they look when going to school. There’s more. Check out the list of 10 brands below, each offering just what your children (and their teachers) need to support a well-rounded academic lifestyle. Be sure to shop soon to ensure everything on the back-to-school list is checked off.

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Carry books, school supplies and lunch in a sporty soft dinosaur spikes backpack. (Courtesy of 7AM)

Credit: Handout

Carry books, school supplies and lunch in a sporty soft dinosaur spikes backpack.
(Courtesy of 7AM)

Credit: Handout

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Carry books, school supplies and lunch in a sporty soft dinosaur spikes backpack. (Courtesy of 7AM)

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Pack it up. Younger kids can carry their school gear in just-the-right-size backpacks. 7AM features a mini backpack, big enough to accommodate snacks and a tablet (or change of clothes, whichever you deem more necessary). The larger midi-size backpack accommodates school supplies, a lunch tote, toys and more, making it a bag kids can grow into. Both sizes are water-repellant and available in a variety cool colors, as well as designs including wings, bows and soft dinosaur spikes. For middle schoolers and teens, opt for the North Face Women’s Jester and Adidas Iconic 3 Stripe backpacks, which are a bit more rugged and spacious with features like a laptop sleeve plus multiple pockets for school tools and devices. Both of the latter bags are available at Macy’s. 7AM bags, $45-$65 each. 7amenfant.com. Macy’s bags, $69 - $70. macys.com.

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An insulated tumbler reps your hometown or favorite city year-round. (Courtesy of Well Told)

Credit: Handout

An insulated tumbler reps your hometown or favorite city year-round.
(Courtesy of Well Told)

Credit: Handout

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An insulated tumbler reps your hometown or favorite city year-round. (Courtesy of Well Told)

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Drink up. Take a favorite drink like hot chocolate or iced tea to-go in a detailed, made-to-order map of your hometown (or favorite place) in an insulated pint tumbler by Well Told. Custom text can also be added to the side for an extra personal touch. The tumbler is ideal for kids year-round and makes a great gift for teachers too. $34.95. welltolddesign.com.

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A delicious lunch is securely packed in a Bentgo stainless-steel container. (Courtesy of Bentgo)

Credit: Handout

A delicious lunch is securely packed in a Bentgo stainless-steel container.
(Courtesy of Bentgo)

Credit: Handout

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A delicious lunch is securely packed in a Bentgo stainless-steel container. (Courtesy of Bentgo)

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Lunch essentials. Parents who prefer to pack lunch for their teens will appreciate a stainless-steel Bentgo lunch box. Designed with durability, this essential lunch container features an airtight lid and leak-proof silicone seal to keep contents in place instead of having to pick up remnants from a bookbag. It’s also odor resistant (ideal for teens who forget it in their bag a day or two) as well as dishwasher- and freezer-safe. $29.99. bentgo.com.

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A contemporary take on a brown bag yields this washable, insulated version. (Courtesy of Out of the Woods)

Credit: STEPHANIE MEYERS

A contemporary take on a brown bag yields this washable, insulated version.
(Courtesy of Out of the Woods)

Credit: STEPHANIE MEYERS

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A contemporary take on a brown bag yields this washable, insulated version. (Courtesy of Out of the Woods)

Credit: STEPHANIE MEYERS

Credit: STEPHANIE MEYERS

Food, to-go. Brown bagging lunch has a new look with water-resistant, reusable paper lunch bags from Out of the Woods. Shaped like a brown bag with the addition of a top carry handle and buckle, this sustainable bag features washable paper with a thick insulated lining to keep food fresh. The bag may look like leather but it’s completely vegan and washable too. Kiddos will be happy to eat their fruits and veggies when packaged in an adorably stylish lunch bag featuring “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle. The interior is wipeable and has mesh pocket and name tag to eliminate lunch mix-ups. This lunch bag can be carried by hand or worn on or across the shoulders with the addition of the matching bright red adjustable strap. A small, machine washable citrus-themed lunch bag is also available and ideal for tucking into a larger bookbag. Both are available at Funkins. Out of the Woods lunch bag, $30. outofthewoods.com. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” bags, $22.95-$32.95. myfunkins.ca.

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Secure your MacBook with this cover, ideal for protecting against scratches and more. (Courtesy of Incase)

Credit: Matt Brown

Secure your MacBook with this cover, ideal for protecting against scratches and more.
(Courtesy of Incase)

Credit: Matt Brown

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Secure your MacBook with this cover, ideal for protecting against scratches and more. (Courtesy of Incase)

Credit: Matt Brown

Credit: Matt Brown

Digital devices: Start the school year prepared to work with a bevy of equipment from Apple which offers MacBooks, iMacs, iPhones and much more. These are the perfect tool for reading, researching, writing papers, FaceTiming classmates and teachers, learning how to code and design with special educational programs and just about anything else that requires using a QWERTY keyboard, camera and/or drawing pen. Prices vary. apple.com.

The cover up. Keep a MacBook Pro 14″ or 16″ protected with a lightweight and form-fitting hardshell case by Incase. Decorated with dots, the sleek and durable design protects laptops from normal wear like scratches. Features like rubberized feet keep laptops in place when working on a table and easy access to ports make it a must-have for prized MacBooks. $54.95. incase.com.

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Go to school in style with this sparkly popcorn-themed headband. (Courtesy of Just Shoes for Kids)

Credit: Handout

Go to school in style with this sparkly popcorn-themed headband.
(Courtesy of Just Shoes for Kids)

Credit: Handout

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Go to school in style with this sparkly popcorn-themed headband. (Courtesy of Just Shoes for Kids)

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Fashionable things. In between learning and studying, kids want to look cute too. Enter the Lilies & Roses NY popcorn headband, available at Just Shoes for Kids which features a box of sparkly-looking popcorn on the side. For something sweeter looking, opt for the glittery ice cream cone headband. Of course boys just want to have fun, too, so outfit him with white high-top sneakers with a big navy lightning bolt-like design by Old Soles. Headband, $22; sneakers, $80. justshoesforkids.com.

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Write, draw and doodle with a bevy of colorful writing tools from Crayola. (Courtesy of Golin)

Credit: Handout

Write, draw and doodle with a bevy of colorful writing tools from Crayola.
(Courtesy of Golin)

Credit: Handout

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Write, draw and doodle with a bevy of colorful writing tools from Crayola. (Courtesy of Golin)

Credit: Handout

Credit: Handout

Write it down. Crayola offers a wide range of writing instruments kids will love and parents will appreciate. Washable crayons and markers make note taking, art class and doodle time a colorful and clean affair since any extra “artwork” on clothes can be machine-washed away. There’s an assortment of color pencils as well as new products like neon light effects markers and comic book character-themed coloring books for teens. Prices vary. crayola.com.