When I was a child, I remember Grandma picking us up, and taking us school shopping. That usually meant a new backpack, lunch box, crayons, paper, pencils, pens, folders, and a couple of outfits, and maybe some new shoes.
My children, up until this year, were always in the same school district from Kindergarten on up, and it's a school that is near a casino. The casino donates a lot of money every year to the schools, so when most of the state, and a lot of the nation, felt budget cuts, we never did.
The school supply lists up there at that school were fairly basic- backpack, pencils, crayons, erasures, folder, etc. Nothing expenive, no brand requested, or what not.
I belong to a yahoo group on budgeting, and it's a hot topic this year- how to successfully (and frugally) shop for school supplies on a budget. Some of these parents have just nightmarish lists, which include extra's such as hand sanitizer (which i send in with each child anyway- it cuts WAY back on school sicknesses in the classroom), kleenex (3 boxes per student), 3 plain white t-shirts (to be decorated with the child's name and used for field trips), disposable cameras (to take pictures of the students through out the year), and brand new clean tennis shoes to be left for gym class.
Some request specific brands (5 boxes per student of Crayola brand crayons- no Rose art, please!), with some of the brands being rather expensive (one mom complained about a type of watercolor her kindergartner needed, which was hard to find, and almost $5 per tray- and she was asked to bring in 3 trays!), and some places asking for specific colors (one mom stated her children each had to have a specific color of notebook & folder for each subject- red for math, blue for english, etc).
Because of this, I was DREADING the school lists for the kids new schools. Raegan will be in 6th grade this year- middle school. Yikes! Back in our old home town, she'd be the oldest at her school, I had another full year to go before she went to the "big" school. This year, she's the youngest grade, and in with the 7th & 8th graders. Boy... I can't wait.. ;) Anyway, when I signed her up, they gave me a small list- not much at all on it. Markers, pencils, blue or black ink pens, a binder, 5 folders, erasures, and a box of kleenex for the classroom "stash".
Not bad- in fact, most of it was stuff I'd already picked up. They did say her teacher may send home a rather small list of specialized "grade" items, but that it won't be much- protractor, calculater, small things I can get at Wal-Mart cheaply.
When I went in to Chris & Gillian's school today to sign them up, I was told that the teachers will send home a small list, but that nothing on the list is expected, so if we can't supply it, don't worry about it. We did get Gilly's list, and all it had on it besides school forms, was a t-shirt with her first name on the front, and last name on the back, to wear over her clothes in gym, art, etc.
So, what's on your child's list this year?