Best backpacks for elementary students
Believe it or not, the new school year is already around the corner. As your family starts gearing up for some back-to-school shopping, here are a few things to consider when selecting the best backpack for elementary school students.
1. Make sure it’s not too heavy
Most doctors and physical therapists recommend that backpacks don’t weigh more than 10 to 15 percent of your child’s body weight, according to Kidshealth.org.
To help offset the weight of books, pick a lightweight backpack to begin with, like this Jansport pack at Macy’s that weighs just over 1 pound. Bonus: It comes in a variety of patterns and colors, so your kid will actually want to wear it. Jansport Big Student Backpack, Multi Watercolor Spots, $44.99 (plus 3% Cash Back), Macy’s.com
2. Select a backpack that is comfortable
Look for backpacks with padded and adjustable shoulder straps. This Big Dots backpack at Walmart.com has padded straps. Plus, it has two zippered compartments and inside pockets, too. Big Dots – Backpack with Adjustable Padded Straps, $39.67 (plus Cash Back), Walmart.com,
3. Pick a backpack with plenty of compartments.
A pack needs to have ample storage and organization options to be as useful as possible. Extra zippers and pockets can help keep everything organized.
Save some strain and space by picking a backpack with an affixable lunchbox, like this Hello Kitty backpack. Hello Kitty Backpack and Lunch Bag Set, $17.99 (plus 4% Cash Back), Kohls.com
This “book pack” from L.L.Bean, is specifically designed to tote books. It’s best for fifth-graders and up. Kids’ L.L.Bean Deluxe Book Pack, $29.96 (plus 3% Cash Back), Llbean.com
4. Consider alternatives, but carefully.
Depending on your child’s unique needs, a messenger bag, shoulder bag or backpack on wheels may be the best option. However, backpacks tend to be safer than side-slung packs, because they are evenly supported by the full back and abs.
5. Don’t forget to consider its materials.
What your child’s backpack is made out of is just as important as what they can put in it. Look for packs without PVC, like Jansport. To be extra careful, also look for backpacks that are free of BPA, phthalates and lead.