Packing List For Toddlers Starting Preschool


Many children start pre-school around 3-years old, so if you have a toddler, then chances are they’re getting ready for or have already started pre-school. There are many benefits to enrolling your child in a pre-school program prior to kindergarten – it helps kids improve their socialization skills, acts as a confidence-booster, and can give them a head-start on learning how to read and write.

But it’s important to keep in mind that going to pre-school is a big adjustment for children as well as parents. That’s why it’s crucial parents know what to pack for their toddlers to ensure they have everything they need to feel comfortable and succeed in class.

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Below, we reveal the must-have items you should be packing for your toddler when they begin pre-school.

6 An Extra Outfit

Kids are bound to get dirty regardless of their age, but this is even truer when your child is only a toddler.

It’s a smart idea to ensure your child always has a fresh change of clothes available at their pre-school in case they spill something on themselves or get dirty while playing outside. This will save you the trouble of having to deliver extra clothes in the event that they have an accident while in class.

You can either store the extra change of clothes in their backpack, or the pre-school may have a spot (like a cubby or locker) where you can keep the items in case your kid needs it.

5 Extra Underwear

Child cries during school drop-off
Via Pexels

It’s not just additional set clothes your child will need at pre-school. Be sure to also send them off with extra underwear.

The Bump explains that even if your child is potty trained and hasn’t had an accident in a while, this is still a good precaution to take. Getting used to a new environment and routine in pre-school can be stressful for a child, even if they don’t exhibit it. This makes it more likely they may have an accident.

But having extra underwear will allow them to get easily cleaned up and avoid embarrassment. Plus, it’ll save you the hassle of having to bring your child new undergarments during the school day, which can be an inconvenience.

4 Sunscreen

Sunscreen for babies
Via Pixabay

It’s likely your toddler will have an opportunity to play outdoors during their school day. Additionally, many pre-schools take kids out for day trips, like to the pool or park. In either case, it’s important to ensure your child has sunscreen packed with them, so they can avoid getting a sunburn.

While the pre-school may also keep sunscreen on hand, making sure your child has their own personal one is especially important if they have sensitive skin and require a specific brand.

3 Naptime Essentials

toddler sleep teddy bear

Most pre-schools have naptime for the kids in the afternoons, so you want to ensure you send your child off with everything they’ll need to get comfortable and settle down.

Kids ‘r Kids recommends making sure your toddler has a blanket, sheet, or even a mat to lay down on. Consider packing extra in case something gets dirty or lost. Most pre-schools will suggest that parents leave the items in the classroom, so you don’t have to worry about your kid bringing them to school and home every day.

Also, be sure to send your child with a personal item (like a pacifier or stuffed animal) that will bring them comfort. However, it shouldn’t be their favorite item that they sleep with at home, given the increased risk items can get lost or damaged at pre-school.

2 Painting Clothes

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Kids tend to do a lot of arts and crafts at pre-school, so it’s wise to make sure they have clothes they can change into when they’re going to dive into a messy art project.

For example, consider picking up a paint smock or apron from an art store. Your local dollar store may also have inexpensive options. Ensure that it’s something that can easily be washed in the laundry machine. Or, you can send your child off with an old, oversized t-shirt that will keep their normal clothes protected and that you don’t mind if it gets covered in paint or glue.

1 Extra Face Masks

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Via Flickr @ Ivan Radic

Depending on where your pre-school is located and the COVID restrictions in place, your child may be required to wear a face mask in class. Or, you may simply prefer your child taking this extra precaution and ask that they keep theirs on for the full day.

It’s always wise to send your child with multiple face masks in their backpacks in case the one they left the house in breaks or gets dirty. Some kids are also fidgety when it comes to wearing face masks, so offering your child different options can allow them to feel more in control and pick the one that’s comfiest as well as cutest, in their opinion.

Sources: Rasmussen, Kids ‘r Kids, The Bump, Very Well Family,

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