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Back-To-School Survival Guide

Five essentials beyond the lunch tote

We trust you’ve got the First Day of School outfit and backpack under control.  But here are a few more essentials to help your tot (and you) survive the transition to nursery school.

1. Help with Separation Anxiety. Aside from multi-week separation classes like the one hosted by apple seeds, you can hire the child development experts at Seedlings Group to troubleshoot those first few weeks. They’ll consult by phone or via private in-home sessions.

2. An opportunity for a Big Kid moment. Accessories that older toddlers can put on and take off by themselves give them a sense of “I did it!” confidence. Velcro shoes are always great, as are these cool, one-handed Myself Belts that can be personalized with names and cute motifs; from $14.95.

3. Self-branded gear. Name labels are cool; photos are even better. Plenty of places will slap an image onto a water bottle, but hi there offers sharp images, on quality bottles. $21 for a 20-ounce bottle.
4. Motivational undies. Half of the potty training challenge is finding underwear that inspires them. Hanna Andersson sells organic toddler underwear in fun prints for boys and girls; from $18 for a pack of three.

5. A reminder of you. Send them to school with a note every day. Ecosystem has new blank journals in candy colors like grape, watermelon, clementine and kiwi. They’re small enough to fit into a toddler backpack, and each has a pocket for storing favorite stickers and loose notes. At year’s end, it’s a great keepsake. Available at Barnes & Noble, Staples, and WholeFoods; from $9.95.