23 Aug 2014
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Patch's Guide to Local Back-to-School Shopping

A helpful list of school supplies from most ‘must-have' lists, plus prices from nearby stores.


It may be hard to believe, but the first day of school is just around the corner—already!

If you feel overwhelmed with the thought of back-to-school shopping, just breathe easy—Patch wants to help.

This handy checklist of school supplies commonly appears on local schools’ lists each new year and at this list of stores you'll find many of those items. Some of these stores have great back-to-school sales on what you’re looking for.

Happy shopping!


What School Supplies Does My Child Need this Year?

  • Sharpened pencils, or mechanical pencils with plenty of extra lead refills (for upper grades)
  • Large erasers
  • Red pens for correcting homework or in-class assignments
  • Colored pencils
  • Crayons and colored markers (for younger grades)
  • Highlighters (for upper grades)
  • Binders with subject dividers (for upper grades)
  • Glue stick (for younger grades)
  • Ruler
  • Protractor (for upper grades)
  • Calculator (check with your child's teacher to see if you need just a basic calculator, or a scientific calculator)
  • Mini stapler (for upper grades)
  • Mini tape dispenser
  • Post-it notes
  • Plenty of binder paper and graphing paper (for upper grades)
  • A thumb drive that can hold at least 1GB of material (for upper grades)
  • Suggested: A small container of hand sanitizer, and mini packs of Kleenex or tissue, for your child's backpack
  • Lunch box or reusable cooler bag
  • Ziploc bags and/or sandwich containers for lunches


Where to Shop for the Best Deals on These School Supplies:


 - Located in the Bridgepointe Shopping Center on the Foster City/San Mateo border

  • 4GB thumb drives: $7.99-$12.99
  • Children’s jeans, sizes 4-16: $16
  • Crewneck and v-neck t-shirts: $7.99
  • Scientific calculators by Texas Instruments: $9.39-$124.99
  • Notebooks: $2-$4
  • Dictionaries and thesauruses: $2-$5
  • Backpacks: $29.99-$39.99
  • Insulated lunch bags: $4.99-13.$99
  • 10-pack of Papermate pens: $1
  • Crayola washable markers: 8 for $1.99
  • Protractors and rulers: under $1


Where Are Good Places to Shop for Back-to-School Clothes?

If you want to get the most shopping done, all in one location, nearby places like and are great destinations that features several children’s clothing stores. 


GYMBOREE - Located at the and shopping centers

Local mother Susan Lee says she loves stocking up on basics at Gymboree. Her daughter will be starting preschool in just a few weeks.

“I’m just looking for any good deals, basically,” she said. “I like to come to Gymboree for the basics, like playclothes, leggings, and anything in cotton that she can move around in.”

Though it may be hard to wrap your brain around shopping for warm jackets or rain clothes with the warm temperatures we’re having these days, Gymboree employee Melissa Herandez said parents also like to stock up on rainy-day supplies like jackets, umbrellas and boots around this time as well.

These days, Gymboree has basics like t-shirts for $5.99-12.99, jeans for $19.99, and frequent sales on rain supplies.

Gymboree is also known for their accessories. These days, parents can get deals like five pairs of socks for $10, four pairs of underwear for $15, and three pairs of girls’ basic tights for $15. All hair accessories like barrettes and hair bows are often on sale as well.


KOHL'S - Located in nearby and

Kohl’s has a huge back-to-school sale on clothing for children going on right now.

Tops and bottoms for children in brand names like Mudd, SONOMA Life and Jumping Beans, in sizes 4-16 for girls, 4-7 for boys, plus sizes for toddlers and newborns, are all 45-55 percent off, bringing the price down to around $6.60-$24.20 per item.

Shoes and sandals for the whole family—Mom and Dad can stock up, too—are 15-50 percent off, bringing the prices down to $9.99-$59.50 per pair.

There is a huge sale on brand-name jeans, with prices at $29.99-$44.99 per pair.

Backpacks featuring all your child’s favorite faces, like Justin Beiber, and characters from Disney’s Cars and princess movies, are around $14.99.

Don’t forget the basics—socks and underwear for kids are 25-35 percent off, at just $3.75-13.50 per value pack.


PATCH WANTS TO KNOW - Where do you like to do your back-to-school shopping? Is there a place nearby we missed on our list? Share your tips with other local parents! Tell us in the comments below.


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