Medically reviewed by Sophia Yen, MD, MPH – Written by Pandia Health Editorial Team

What’s In My Backpack? By Addie #PandiaBack2School

It’s so crazy to think that for those you on the semester system, school will be starting up again at the end of August. This summer went by so quickly with the end of summer coming up so soon already?

Luckily, just because summer is coming to an end doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time anymore. The start of school signifies the start to an exciting time with so many different opportunities to explore. It is the time to connect with old friends, meet new ones, and learn about topics that challenge us to think outside of our comfort zones ? Oh, the opportunities!

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One way to get prepared for school is to make sure you have everything you need for the semester before it starts. A good way to start is to think about what you’ll need on a daily basis to bring in your backpack. Carry your day-to-day essentials in your backpack because you’ll be taking that bag with you almost everywhere you go. Gotta make sure you have everything you need in there! I’ll be taking you on a tour of my backpack to show you what my back-to-school backpack essentials are why they made my list.

Woman with laptop


After my first couple semesters of college, it was clear to me that my laptop was my top backpack essential. This is because having my laptop gave me the accessibility of getting work done no matter where I was. For example, if I had extra time in between classes, I could stop by the campus library and pull out my laptop to do some work from the class I just got out of.

The benefit of bringing your computer with you everywhere outweigh the small con of the extra weight it fills in your backpack. If you are connected to the school wifi, you can do your homework on your laptop all over campus. It can get boring doing homework in the same place all the time. If you feel your motivation start to plateau some days, a good way to recharge yourself is to change up your surroundings and explore new places to do work. Some of my favorite places on campus to pull out my laptop are the library, a dining hall (if I wanted to be in a more social environment), or study rooms for group work. It’s also good to have it with you to use it to take notes or to reference any you may need in class. Personally, I prefer to hand write my notes during class, but I have lots of friends who found taking classes with their laptops was very helpful. I suggest switching it up if you usually take notes by hand to try using your laptop for them, or vice versa, to see if the other may work better for you. Plus, you are almost always allowed to use your laptop in class if it is for academic purposes, unless you need to redirect your attention to a presentation.

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My next item I always have in my backpack is a pair of earbuds. These little music devices are so important because as a self-acclaimed  music junkie, listening to it throughout my day is a huge mood booster. I love the feeling of being able to conquer anything in my way with upbeat tunes, along with the tranquility to of listening to relaxing study beats. In addition to helping boost mood, listening to music has many other psychological benefits as well. Scientists have found many surprising benefits, such as its ability to improve cognitive performance, reduce stress, and improve motivation. These are especially valuable for students for the back to school season.

When I lived in a dorm that was on the other side of the academic hall, making sure I had my earbuds was crucial for the walk across campus. I loved that feeling of putting my earbuds on, playing my favorite tunes, and feeling like I was instantly in a music video. Admit it, I can’t be the only one who felt that way when walking along to the beat of my music ?

Pencil pouch

Photo Taken From Pinterest

Pencil pouch

Having a pencil pouch for class is super convenient for class because it keeps all your supplies together! I used to be someone who just threw a couple pencils and pens into my backpack, butt starting to organize my writing utensils with a pouch helped me be more prepared for class.

We all know that person that color codes and spends hours on their notes that are some of the most detailed creations we have ever seen. This is the type of person who is on the opposite side of the spectrum from the type to throw some pens in their bag. While not everyone has to be the person that puts in so much effort in their intricate notes with their 100 gels pens, it can be fun to spice up your notes and explore your note-taking style with different styles and colors.

I use a pencil pouch to carry highlighters to color code assignments in my planner, a pencil for the inevitable mistakes that I will be making, a couple pencils with lead, and pens. Whenever I write notes either in class or in my dorm, my pouch allows me to quickly find what I need. It is easy to throw in and out of my backpack and to get in the habit to make sure I have in my backpack everytime I leave for class. No one has time for scrummaging in their backpack and praying that they remembered to pack a pencil on exam day!

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Napkins in restaurant


Napkins are one of those things that you wish you had when you need them, but usually don’t have on you. Fortunately, keeping napkins on hand can save you from so many sticky situations that come with life. There have been so many instances where I was SO HAPPY that my past self decided to keep napkins in my backpack. From late night food runs with friends to spilling coffee in class, there are so many instances when I or someone around me has been so grateful for being prepared.

And there you have it! As my binders, folders, and textbooks are changed out frequently, these are the things that I always have with me no matter where I’m going on campus. Get ready for back-to-school season by making sure you have your backpack essentials on hand when you’re up and about.

Black and white treated mailbox with hand

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The above information is for general informational purposes only and is NOT a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your doctor/primary care provider before starting or changing treatment.