Skip to Content

5 Tips & Tricks for Organizing a Backpack

Sharing is caring!

Simple Tips for Keeping Your Child’s Backpack Organized

With the start of school, every day your child will be coming home with homework, teacher’s notes, books, reminders and more.  The best way to be sure you see all the important papers and forms and completed homework doesn’t get lost is to keep your child’s backpack organized.   Fortunately, organizing a backpack can be easy.

5 Tips & tricks for organizing a backpack. No more lost assignments or missing papers. Easy tips to keep your child's backpack organized.

If  you have a child in middle school or high school, it’s important for them to start becoming independent in keeping their school papers, supplies and books organized.  For older students, learning to be organized with school books and assignments is a great way to start learning responsibility.

5 Tips for Organizing a Backpack

Choose a Backpack that Allows for Organization

When selecting a backpack or book bag, consider your child’s grade and organization skills.  For example, elementary students may need fewer pockets and have fewer organization needs.  But older students may need more pockets and compartments to organize books, papers, and reports.  Remember, some children are more organized than others.

My son has a great backpack for organization (and he even picked it out himself).  It has several large pockets and compartments that allow him to separate his books from his papers and keep them organized.

If your child is in middle school or high school, they need to carry books with them during the day. They could select one pocket for specific books (like math and English).  And one pocket for other subjects (like science, history and art).

A few pockets and compartments can be helpful, because they will allow your child to decide where every item (books, pens, pencils, papers, etc…) should go and make it easier to locate each item when class starts.

Book Organization

Books will probably take up the most space in your child’s backpack each day.  If the backpack has several pockets or compartments, your child may find it helpful to keep books separated from papers and other supplies like pens and pencils.  

If your child’s backpack is mostly one large open backpack, they can still keep everything organized.  But they will need to be more careful.  You might add some additional organizing tools to keep everything in the right place.

Paper Organization

Lost papers seem like the biggest problem in backpacks and school bags right?  How many times has your child “lost” their homework that you know was completed?  When the assignment is found, it was crammed and crumpled in the bottom of their backpack.

One great idea for organizing papers is adding a simple accordion type folder to your child’s backpack.  With the accordion folder, you can have a tab for each class or each teacher.  Once an assignment is given, the paper is placed in the correct tab to be taken home and completed.  Once homework and assignments are completed they are returned to the accordion folder to go back to school.  This way it’s easy to find assignments when it’s time to turn them in.

For extra writing paper, you can add a simple plastic folder with pockets or a 3-ring binder.  I have found keeping the extra paper separate from completed assignments keeps everything a little neater.

Pen & Pencil Organization

The best way to keep pens & pencils organized in a backpack or bookbag is with a simple pencil bag.  I recommend the soft cloth pencil case (not the hard plastic type) to keep in backpacks.  The soft cloth pencil cases are flexible and easier to move around as needed.

Keep pens & pencils organized with a soft pencil case.

Alternatively, if your backpack or bookbag has a small pocket that allows for pens and pencil organization, your child could keep all the pens and pencils here.  However, I have noticed that frequently a pen and pencil are needed or all the colored pencils are needed.  So it’s easier to have a pencil case that can be taken out and placed on the desk.

Planners and More…

A planner is an amazing tool to keep your child organized.  If your school does not provide planners, you might consider getting your child a planner.  A planner is a great way for your child to write down all their homework assignments and keep it organized.  Older students can also use the planner to track projects and reports.  

I like having a designated place for the planner in the backpack so it can be easily located when needed to write down assignments.

From time to time, your child may have other supplies they need for school like rulers, compasses, and calculators. To keep these items organized, give them a designated pocket or place in the backpack so they can be found quickly.  

Tools for an organized backpack

Many backpacks and school bags include clips and hooks on the outside that can be used to attach lunchboxes.  Attaching lunchboxes to backpacks and book bags is an easy  way to keep lunchboxes from getting lost or forgotten at the end of the day.

To keep school bags and backpacks organized,  discourage your child from just randomly tossing books, papers, pens and pencils in their backpack.  Encourage them to take time and decide how they can organize their school books, papers and more so that nothing is ever lost.

Your turn…

How do you keep your child’s backpack or bookbag organized?  What’s your best tip for keeping your child organized?