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While some moms may cringe at the thought of back-to-school shopping, I’m all excited about it. I remember how I enjoyed shopping for school supplies when I was a kid. My mom always took us with her, so we could choose our favorite themes ourselves and wouldn’t complain later on about notebooks with wrong pictures or color schemes.

Now it’s my turn to take my daughter to back-to-school shopping as Sofia starts nursery school in September.

It took us really long time to decide if we want Sofia to attend a nursery school and even more time to find a one we liked for her. After lots of school visits and interviews, we got a mail telling us that Sofia was admitted and I started making a list of things she might need for school and think about how to prepare her for the school.

When I talk about preparing, I don’t mean that we will have an intensive course in numbers, letters, reading, etc., but preparing her mentally. She has spent most of her almost two years with her mom, dad, and Spanish grandparents. Playdates are not common here, so the social interaction she has with other kids is when we are in the playground.

A good way to get her interested in school and the activities she will be doing at school is through books. She loves books and over the months I have added several school themed books to our collection.

One of our favorites is “The Things I love About School/ Cosas Que Me Gustan de El Colegio” by Trace Moroney.

colegio 1cole 2 cole 3

When I was in Estonia visiting my family, my husband and mother-in-law had the first meeting with Sofia’s teachers and they got the first guidelines on how things will work in a nursery school and on the supplies list they need.

And sadly, or maybe not, I have to say that the list isn’t that long at all. Most of the materials and supplies are included in a monthly fee. The things we have to buy are:

  • uniform – Almost all the schools in Spain have their own uniform, doesn’t matter if it’s public or private center. My mother-in-law already bought a couple of uniform pieces, but we have to get more shirts, another pair or two of pants and white socks.

A part of Sofia’s nursery school uniform

  • sports shoes/ trainers – the shoes kids wear have to be white sports shoes with velcro. See here for shoe shopping tips.
  • backpack – for the spare clothes, diapers, merienda. We already have a Peppa Pig backpack that she has been using, but it’s little bit big for her, so here are other options I like a lot.

Backpacks back-to-school shopping @homelifeabroad.com


  • bed sheet/small blanket – for the cot
  • waterproof marker for clothes or labels – On the first meeting the teachers said that it’s really important to label all the items kids bring to school. I have never had to label my things.  My mother-in-law recommends a waterproof marker, but I have seen so many beautiful personalizable labels and may order some of them to try them out. They seem much more fun than just a name written with a marker. You can check out LeeLee Labels, Label Your Stuff, Name Bubbles, I.D. Me Labels, Bright Star Kids & Mabel’s Label’s for cute labels.
  • lunchbox – the lunch is included in a monthly fee, but kids have to take food (cookies, fruit, juice etc.,) for merienda (light afternoon snack) with them.

Lunchbox ideas back-to-school shopping @homelifeabroad.com #backtoschool #lunchbox #kids


Do you like back-to-school shopping?