5 Things Your Daughter Needs for Junior High

Junior high is right around the corner – this time for my daughter! I should feel like an old pro, but I’ll admit I’m a little nervous. I’ve charted this territory before with my son, but it’s a bit different with a girl.  So lately, I’ve found myself thinking through all the must haves and don’t forgets, and I’ve come to find that there are 5 things every girl needs for junior high. And as you’re wading through the aisles and bins of all things “back to school,” I hope that you find this list to be helpful too!

Side Note :: Our school PTA does a school supply drive each year, so I always buy my supplies from them. Even as much of a cheapskate as I am, trying to locate a specific shade of green, 3-prong, 2-pocket folder absolutely gives me hives. The specifics on the list push me over the edge, so I bite the bullet and trust the PTA to do all of my purchasing for me!

Daughter Junior High

1} Locker gear.

Moms of new junior high daughters, let me assure you that dressing up your locker is a real thing. Chandeliers, mirrors, carpet, shelves … it’s like decorating a tiny house. I really had no idea, but it’s obviously a nationwide “thing” because every major retailer and the online boutique shops are selling over-priced little carpet samples that your tween beauty will be dying to have!

I recommend :: Pottery Barn Teen. They have an entire line of locker accessories that are so cute!

2} Tablet & Phone.

I catch a lot of flak about technology with my kids, but hear me out on this one {and the next}. My son Avery ended up having a tablet {Kindle} with him during 6th grade. The reading class that my son was in was AWESOME. One of those “where was this teacher when I was 12?” experiences. Avery has always been an avid reader, but he really took off during this year. The students were learning lessons about plot, character development, etc., and they could read any book of their choosing {within reason, of course}. Their tests had them defend their book or describe in length the book elements. All of that aside, Avery was literally reading books so quickly that we {and the school library} couldn’t keep up. We began having him read them on the Kindle. We would buy or rent the electronic version of the books as we needed to. It saved us a ton of cash once we were smart enough to invest. {Kindles are relatively inexpensive. You don’t need a fancy one.} The device also kept the weight of a thick book out of his already overweight backpack!

And the phone? It worked out well for a variety of reasons. At our school, the principal allows the kids to text between classes and at lunch. If practices were cancelled, a tutoring option became available, or a test grade came out on top, I got a text. It was so nice that the days of communicating with a teacher for a transportation change were over. If I needed to get a simple message to my child, I sent a text.

I also found out through ruthless monitoring of said phone, that Avery couldn’t write down notes as quickly as needed for some classes. When that happened, he took a photo of the whiteboard. This capability would have changed my college career! Often, he would print the photo when he got home or use it for quick reference while doing his homework. It was wonderful.

I recommend :: Nothing! Choosing technology devices for your child is solely a personal decision based on what you as a parent are comfortable with for your child, so I’ll leave that up to you.

3} A planner.

My daughter has taken many things after me, but the fact that she needs to write something to remember it is definitely one of the most obvious. She is an organizer through and through. She keeps a hectic schedule outside of school, so she requires a paper planner to keep assignment deadlines on track. Many kids, I’m sure, have gone the electronic route with this, but as for me and my girl – we are paper all the way. Adding stickers, washi tape, and the use of colored pens will help ensure that the fad of using the calendar doesn’t get old.

I recommend :: Me and My Big Ideas Happy Planner {available at craft stores}

4} A good backpack. 

It is amazing to me how much kids are expected to carry on their backs with textbooks, laptops, and the like. We have heard all of the horror stories, and I’m sure that they are true. Chiropractors will be set for life with this generation and their troubled spines. For that reason, it’s important that you invest in a good backpack. Make sure that it fits properly, straps are tight, and the weight that will be inside can be distributed properly. When you are shopping, take into consideration if you will be sending a laptop to school with your child. If so, make sure you buy one that specializes in security for the laptop!

I recommend :: Vera Bradley Lighten Up Grande Laptop Backpack {Watch for sales & invest in one of last year’s patterns to save money.} Add a matching lanyard/ID holder for added coolness factor!

5} Maxi Pads.

I know that you do not in any way want to think about the fact that your daughter will be starting her period soon {unless she already has}. But, when you are packing some extra pens and pencils into the backpack the night before school, add in a few pads as well. No girl wants to go to the nurse’s office to ask for pads – especially if it’s her first time to start. Better safe than sorry on this one … be prepared!

I recommend :: U by Kotex, Pads for Tweens

These are my 5 things, but what would you add to the list? Let’s help each other as we lead our kids to get ready to learn and change the world around them!

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