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Backpacks and Lunch Bags for Toddlers

It might be hard to imagine, but one day, your tiny toddler is going to march into kindergarten and settle into a life filled with learning. Equipping your child with basic skills now can help make that transition into elementary school a smooth one. One way to encourage independence in toddlers is to give them backpacks and lunch bags to keep track of their own belongings. Plus, these handy items will have plenty of uses long before the first day of school. So, follow these tips for using backpacks and lunches with your toddler.

Mackenzie Lavender/Purple Preppy Butterflies Backpack

Introducing Backpacks and Lunch Bags to Toddlers

Using backpacks and lunch bags instills a bit of independence in your toddler, who likely relies on Mom and Dad to keep up with most of their belongings. With a backpack, your toddler can keep important items nearby without having to stuff them in Mom’s purse or Dad’s pocket. If your child is in a daycare or preschool setting, a backpack and lunch bag are even more important. Here, these items are essential, keeping your child’s change of clothes, lunch, snacks and drinks accessible throughout the day. As a result, the earlier you can incorporate backpacks and lunch bags into your toddler’s life, the better because they’re an inevitable part of life once elementary school starts.

Using Backpacks and Lunch Bags

While your toddler’s new backpack and lunch bag serve as handy items to keep essentials on hand at preschool or daycare, these items offer plenty of other uses as well. In fact, if you get a little creative, chances are you’ll find a reason to fill up that backpack or lunch bag every day. To begin, try using your backpack as a busy bag. Fill it with items that will capture your toddler’s attention. A small notepad and crayons will inspire creativity, or a few small race cars can turn any floor into a fun track. Small board books and puzzles tuck neatly into the backpack as well. A backpack filled with quiet and engaging activities can make long waits, whether you’re at the doctor or at an older sibling’s practice, less stressful for parents and kids alike.

On a similar note, your toddler’s lunch bag is practical for dinner as well -- especially when dinner requires waiting at a restaurant. Fill it with some healthy, pre-dinner snacks that will keep your youngster nourished and entertained during your wait. Don’t forget to include a sippy cup to avoid unwanted spills. Roll up a reusable placement and pack toddler-sized silverware so that your child can dine comfortably outside of the home.

Keep your child refreshed and satisfied on warm days by filling the lunch bag with thirst-quenching items perfect for picnics and playdates. Insulated lunch bags will keep drinks cool, especially when you throw in an ice pack. Try freezing yogurt sticks and juice boxes on hot days. Your child can enjoy these frozen treats early in the day, or they’ll remain refreshing and cold later in the day when they melt.

If your toddler participates in an activity or sport that requires gear, your backpack can help transport that gear to and from practices and games. For example, the backpack can hold ballet slippers, a soccer uniform or goggles for swim lessons. By having a designated place to store this gear, it’s less likely to go missing.

Backpacks and lunch bags are also essential items for traveling, whether you’re on the road or in the air. Use the insulated lunch bag to keep snacks and drinks on hand during your journey, which will minimize gas station pit stops or pricey airport snacks. Use the backpack to store entertainment for your trip. It can hold a tablet, coloring books, crayons, books or small toys.

Enjoying Your Backpack and Lunch Bag

Once you’ve selected a backpack and lunch bag for your toddler, put it to use. Hang your backpack on a hook by your door, whether that’s in a front hallway, garage, laundry room or mudroom. Place the hook at a height where your toddler can reach it. Similarly, you can store the lunch bag conveniently in a kitchen counter or drawer that’s at your toddler’s height. As a result, you can encourage your child to collect the necessary belongings before you leave the house on your way to daycare or preschool, soccer practice, a picnic lunch or a playdate with friends.

Classic Critter Unicorn Backpacks

Pottery Barn Kids offers backpacks and lunch bags designed especially for toddlers, allowing you to teach your child to use these essential items early in life. Select a style your child loves, and start using these items in many settings to keep important items always within reach.

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