First Time Mom of a Kindergartener

Updated on July 29, 2013
J.S. asks from Georgetown, TX
38 answers

My LO is starting kindergarten next month and I'm starting to think about school supplies. Groupon has a $36 deal today for a backpack/back to school bundle that includes the following:

10 thin, washable markers
100 3"x5" ruled index cards
8" school organizer box
Backpack or messenger bag
Composition book with 100 sheets
Eight ballpoint pens
Eight colored pencils
Eight crayons
Eight No. 2 pencils
Eight pink erasers
Five-subject spiral notebook with 150 sheets
Four bright gel pens
Four mechanical pencils
Four-digit calculator
Six tubes of 0.7 mm mechanical pencil lead
Three black retractable pens
Two correction pens
Two glue sticks
Two pairs of 5.5" steel pointed scissors
Two-in-one sharpener
Two-pocket folder
Two-pocket folder with brads

Does this seem like a good deal? The brand of the backpack is Kaizen. I haven't heard of it but I figure for $36 it still might be worth it.

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answers from Dallas on

You should see if the school has a supply list posted. That way you know exactly what they need you to provide.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Does it say the brands of the other supplies. Schools are VERY specific what brands of glue, markers, pencils, crayons, etc they want. Also, a kindergartner isn't going to need some of those supplies. Gel pens, mechanical pencils, calculator, pointed scissors, correction pens, retractable pens. Last year, I bought my son school supplies and the crayola stuff (usually the brand asked for) was .50 at walmart. I spent WAY less then $36 getting everything he would have needed for kindergarten, and I wasn't spending money on things he wouldn't. There are also things on the list they will need, that isn't there. Ziplock baggies, construction paper, safety scissors, specific brands, etc.

I would not get the deal, and just buy what's on the list provided. That list is for older children.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

only maybe a 1/4 of that stuff is on my sons school supply list for kindergarten this year so i wouldnt do it. Also they ask for specific brands and colors of folders.

3 moms found this helpful

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answers from Austin on

It sounds like a good deal. IF your school needs these supplies for kinder. 'To me it looks like ther are a few items they will not be using in kindergarten.

At our elementary school, they sell the supplies for about this price and they include the actual list of supplies that they need. They include, the exact companies that the schools have found work the best. Sometimes they request certain colors for the folders, the pens.. etc.

Call the school and find out if they can email you the actual list and if they are selling the supplies as a package.

Congratulations on Kindergarten! Very exciting time for all of you!

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

Not sure what your school requires, but when my kiddos went to kindergarten, the only supply we needed to provide was their backpack, lunch box if applicable, and they requested a donation to the classroom, like tissues, pencils, hand sanitizer, etc. The groupon sounds like a good deal, but in all honesty, I don't think you need all that stuff for kindergarten.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I think that this is way more than a K student needs.

For K, my child needed a backpack, an 8 pack of crayons, some pencils (no mechanical ones allowed), saftey scissors, a pencil box, and 2 two-pocket folders.

I might have spent $25 on it all, but that's because he wanted a backpack with his favorite sports team (that cost me about $20 of it). And I let him pick out the folders (Lightening McQueen), and a blue pencil box, which he decorated with stickers. I could have spend a lot less, but letting him pick out his own stuff for the first day of school is part of the fun.

You might check your school district website. Our has the list of school supplies that is needed for each grade already up.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Most of the stuff on that list was not on my grandson's kindergarten, or first grade, list. If you want these items available in your home, or to save for possible future use in school, then it might be a good deal. Otherwise, packages like these are often ways to increase the cost (and associated savings) on the products.

Schools usually ask for Crayola crayons for younger kids, because the colors are saturated and go on fairly smoothly. Cheaper brands can be mostly wax with little color, and very unsatsifying for little kids to use. Please don't cut corners on those items – there are a few other brands that are decent, too, but Crayola is reliable and easy to find. For kids like me who could grow up to be artists, low-quality supplies could discourage a love of drawing.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from College Station on

You would have to compare it to what the school has put out. Usually, the lower grade kids use fat markers, not thin. They won't use the index cards, pens, 5 subject notebook, calculator, gel pens, scissors- they will want snub nose, at that age.

I would skip this, Most of the stuff on this list is not age appropriate for a kinder kid.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Go online and look up your child's school. The school's website usually has info on where to buy the school supply pack they need online and the price difference is negligible to save the hassle of school shopping. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

It may be a good deal, but not at all what a kindergartner needs for school. The school should have a list for you to follow.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I would not do this because most schools have specific lists (specified brands) for each grade level.

The package you describe is not a package for a Kinder student.

Does your school have a website or a PTA website? If not check the ISD website for a list of supplies for each grade level. Most PTA's will sell prepackaged supplies for a small profit as a fundraiser as well.

Best wishes to your new student!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

It sounds like a good price, but make sure all of those items are on the school supply list from the school. Most schools have very specific lists and requirements.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Look at your school's supply list on their web site for kindergarteners and get what's on that list.
Often the teacher will hand out the list on back to school night when there's a meet and greet with the teacher.
Kindergarteners will not need mechanical pencils / calculator / five subject spiral notebook and I very much doubt they want kindergartners using that size scissors - they'll want blunt tipped safety scissors.
The lead in mechanical pencils will break too easily for kindergarteners - they need real #2 pencils.
Besides that, every teacher I've come across will ask for a supply of tissues, hand sanitizer and maybe some Clorox wipes too.
Don't just start getting stuff - although when you DO get the list and you are shopping, get a few more of what ever they are asking for because right around Christmas the kids will be running out of some things and you'll be ready for it.
I always got double crayons, glue sticks, pencils and erasers.
You can do that for pens and markers but don't buy too much ahead on those because they'll dry out before next year if you have too many extras.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Wichita Falls on

First ask the school for a supply list. Chances are very few of these items will match, especially for a kinder. WalMart is actually a great place for back to school supplies as far as price goes. $0.50 crayon, $0.25 folders, etc. you should be able to get your list for less than $10 plus the backpack.

Do talk to the school BEFORE buying a backpack. Schools can be very picky about what they will allow/require students to have.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Columbia on

Are those items on the school supply list you got from the school?

Some of the items might be good to have at home for take-home projects, but don't be surprised if you're spending another $40 for the items on the school supply list.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

No, not for kindergarten. Either go to Walmart and there will be a big cardboard stand with the supply lists for each grade and public school near you and find your school supply list that way, or you could maybe pull it from the school website by now, and then shop that way. For example, last year my K student needed 10 fat washable markers, one plastic school organizer box (which he did not need later when we moved to a different store), a bag, 2 wide ruled comp books, a primary journal (half the page is blank for drawing pics and they write on the lower half), a 1" binder with a clear sleeve, a couple folders with brads and pockets, 4 glue sticks, 24 no 2 pencils, 2 pink erasers, crayons, 1 5" scissors, and that was all. Optionally, they asked for construction paper, both colored and manilla, tissues, hand sanitizer, and clorox wipes. He's going into 1st grade now and doesn't have pens, mechanical pencils, index cards, or a calculator on his list yet. I think if you want supplies just for around the house for you AND your new student, this pack would be good, but otherwise it's just not what's needed, or in the wrong amounts. (2 glues rather than 4, 8 pencils rather than 24, etc)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

Not for a Kindergartener. Wait until list is sent home.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

A lot of the supplies are not things a kindergartener uses. Your child's teacher will have an additional list of supplies that you'll need to buy that aren't on this list, such as manilla paper and thick crayons.

It's doesn't look like that great of a bargain to me, unless it's a fairly good backpack.



answers from Memphis on

This is a good deal for the price, but most likely not for what your KG will need. I taught KG for years and never once did we require pens or mechanical pencils. You probably also will not need index cards, a calculator, correction pens, pencil sharpeners or pointed scissors. Check w the school for a supply list - but I'm thinking more crayons, markers and flu sticks for sure. Lots of schools will also request ziploc bags, tissues, baby wipes, hand sanitizer, etc as well.



answers from Dallas on

If it was a PTA one I would say to get it. But seeing its not specific to your school, don't buy it there.

I tried to save (and I am a very frugal person) when my kid was that age by buying from discount stores and Big Lots to furnish the supplies. It was difficult to find exactly what they needed, it was a pain to drag my kids around to get it and I ended up not saving much at all!

Our PTA bundled the packs especially for the grade and from then on, I bought the pack!



answers from Austin on

Most of those items won't be needed for kindergarten. If you know what school he will go to, you can usually go online to that school and get the school list.

Most kindergarten lists have things like:

4 Wide Rule Spiral Notebooks (Solid Color)
1 Wide Rule Composition Book
2 Plastic Folders w/o Brads (Solid Color)
3 Plastic Folders w/Brads (Red, Blue, Green)
2 Large Pink Erasers
3 24-Count Crayola Crayons (Unscented, No Glitter)
1 Blunt Tip Fiskar Scissors (Metal)
4 Elmer’s Glue Sticks
1 12”x18” Construction Paper, Asst. Colors
1 12”x 18” Manila Paper
1 Plastic School Box
24 Ticonderoga Brand #2 Pencils
1 8-Count Crayola Classic Markers, Washable
1 4-Count Expo Dry Erase Markers, Asst. Colors
1 Ream Colored Copy Paper
3 Boxes Kleenex Tissues
1 Roll Paper Towels
Boys:1 Gallon Ziploc Bags, 1 Baby Wipes
Girls: 1 Quart Ziploc Bags, 1 Disinfectant Wipes

(This is actually the list for my grandson for kindergarten...)



answers from Jacksonville on

Your LO won't use half that stuff until high school. Pay more for a durable backpack (I like lands end)and go on your school's website to get the supply list


answers from Washington DC on

No. Get the list from your school and only get the things you need. I always send in extra tissues, Clorox wipes, and hand sanitizer...they go through those things like water in my kids school.



answers from Santa Barbara on

One school had all the boy bring X items and all the girls bring Y items. All the items were shared in the class. Another school supplied all the items (yes, we all were asked for money, so it was not exactly free).

Anyway, I do like to have items at home. If you think you want these at home them go for it.



answers from Houston on

It sounds like it would be great for an older child, but not for a kindergartner. For kindergarten you won't need half of the stuff. Find out where you can get a school supply list and work from that. My local Walmart didn't have my schools list. :-( Luckliy, Office Max had it. Oh, and now that I searched all over for it, the school put it on the website. You can also see if your school will be selling supply packs but remember that if they are, it's a fundraiser so it may be a little pricy.



answers from Albuquerque on

That's WAY more stuff than your child will need... and a lot of schools request specific brands. I wouldn't do this deal.

I just purchased all of the supplies requested by my twin daughters' school and the total cost was $28... and that's for two kids!



answers from Honolulu on

Per our school in my city for public school:
The school, BY now, has the school supply lists posted on their website.
AND they give the Kindergarten parents, a packet of info. detailing what is needed/what to do/etc.

That bundle you talk about, is NOT NOT NOT, for Kindergarten kids.

You NEED to, go to your child's school, and/or look on their website if they have one, and see.... what the school supply list is, for Kindergarten kids.

EVERY school, and every State, varies.... in the school supply list, for Kindergarten kids.
So, do not guess at it nor buy anything, yet... UNLESS you have a supply list from, your child's school.
If you buy things now, without having a school supply list from YOUR child's school, then you will be wasting, money and time and gas money and just guessing at what needs to be purchased.



answers from San Francisco on

Your kindergartener is not going to need most of this stuff. At most he/she will need a backpack, crayons, paper, glue sticks, erasers and maybe a folder. The classroom will ask for donations of kleenex, pencils, erasers, paper. You can get most of what he needs at the dollar store and spend way less than $36.00.



answers from Oklahoma City on

Your school should have a list at Walmart or any other business that sells school supplies.

Most of this stuff is not for kindergartners. This actually sounds like an older kids list.

So no, this is not a good deal for you. You'll still have to go buy the items he needs. This would be a waste of money for you.

You can also look up your local schools online and get a supply list there.



answers from Miami on

The schools usually send out a list prior to school with what items you will need. They also usually collect it all and the stuff you bought might not go to your child. Its usually a mixed bag. After the main stuff goes through you can buy special items for your child.



answers from New York on

Your kindergartener won't need a lot of this stuff. No index cards, pens, spiral notebook, mechanical pencils, lead, large scissors, calculator, etc.

It's more likely you will need 2 packs of pencils, about 6 glue sticks, a few boxes of tissues, ziploc bags and a bunch of other stuff.

If you shop wisely, you can get it all for about 35. Even the backpack since a Kindergartener doesn't need a heavy duty one. I go to Target every year and do one big shop!

Go online to the school website. There should be list!



answers from Austin on

I think there is quite a few things that come with that deal your little one wilI not need. I would go to Walmart and get just the things you need. School supply list are out already and the supply list gets smaller each year. Also kinder lockers are small and you will not need a big back pack. Go to Walmart I would not want to buy things I don't need. Kids don't need ink pens, mechanical pencils, calculater, index cards, correction pens, colored pencils, eight pink erasers. A lot of that stuff he or she will not need. I work at an elementary school so if I were you I would not buy this groupon deal!!



answers from New York on

When my son started K (and 1st), the school gave us a very specific list. We had to get X number of X brand item for classroom use.

So, before you commit to this purchase, check with the school and see if they have a list like that. If you buy all this stuff plus $50 of classroom supplies, it may not seem like such a good deal.

Otherwise, this sounds like a great set of supplies for families with multiple kids, especially kids in the older grade school years. A kindergartener will use a lot of crayons, basic pencils and erasers, etc. Calculator, sharp scissors, not so much.



answers from Detroit on

my kindergarteners did not need hardly anything.. and the list that we were provided was suggest items.. not required.

so I would not buy this good deal .. unless you want the stuff at home..

I would buy a good ll bean or lands end backpack. el cheapo store backpacks do not last through one school year.


answers from San Francisco on

You should wait until you get the school supply list from your son's school/teacher. Every school is different and you may be surprised what they ask for, things like ziploc bags and boxes of kleenex for example.
Also, they have pretty specific pencil sizes in K, so don't buy those yet, and I doubt he'll need spiral notebooks or correction fluid or most of the other things listed above.



answers from Washington DC on

Wait for the list from the school. Kindergarteners are never going to be told to have calculators, ink pens, mechanical pencils, folders, correction pens or composition books! If you get this stuff you will end up seeing almost every piece of it come right back home from school on day one. It's an expensive way to end up buying ink pens and folders for home use!

I know you're eager to get things done and get him ready for school, but it will waste your money and disappoint him if he hauls it all to class to be told, "You can take that back home."

Some kids also think it's fun to do the school supply shopping with mom or dad. Buying these pre-packaged kits kills that fun. I'd wait for the list from his teacher so you get what he really needs and so you and he can make a big event out of finding it -- let him be in charge of the list and check things off as you get them.

He's likelier to be asked for things like tissues and Clorox wipes for the classroom than anything like a gel pen or calculator! The outfits that make these packages know they can get parents to cough up for stuff they don't actually need. Some schools have contracts with firms that create boxes of the school supplies the school requests -- wait for those deals later on but don't get this one.


answers from Grand Forks on

This does not sound like appropriate supplies for kindergarten. In kinder you are looking at a backpack, crayons, markers, glue sticks, blunt scissors, scribblers, paint smocks and pencils. Our kindergarten teacher buys the supplies herself, so we don't even need to buy supplies at our school for kinder.



answers from Tampa on

Personally, I spend a lot on school supplies. I pretty much buy enough stuff to last the entire year as well as extras of everything to donate to the classroom. Crayons, pencils, paper SO much cheaper this time of year. My children's school has a school supply list by grade. I make sure that I buy the stuff on that with lots of extras during the Summer. When you go to open house, the teacher will likely have specific requests so you will be buying more stuff anyway.

Frankly, this deal doesn't sound like it has enough of anything anyway. As others have said, kindergarteners won't use this stuff. At a minimum, I think you should stock up on Crayola crayons, markers, fat pencils, and glue sticks. The little ones use this stuff far more than anything else.

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