Summer is coming to a close, and while that means the weather will be cooling off it also means the kids are going to be heading back to the classrooms. These days tech is pretty important to the educational experience, and before you throw your kids onto the bus ready for a new term, here's some of the stuff you should get your hands on.
128GB USB stick, £20
Plenty of school work is done on the computer, and if you're not bundling your child off to school with a laptop they're going to need a convenient way to transfer files to and from school. You can't go wrong with a USB stick, and with 128GB of space you should have room to transfer all the files and keep them all backed up. [Buy it here]
HP Stream 11, £150
Kids need computers to get a lot of work done these days, and the HP Stream 11 is a great choice. Even if your child won't be taking the laptop with them to school, the Stream 11 has a lot of great perks. It's cheap, comes with a full version of Windows 10, a nine and a half hour battery life, and even two years free access to 100GB of OneDrive storage.
Textbooks are far too 20th century for the modern school, and too many can do terrible things to a kid's back (I have experience with that). So get a Kindle and make sure all those schoolbooks don't take up valuable bag, desk, or locker space. They're not as cheap as the base-level Kindle Fire, but they also come with a lot fewer internet and media-based distractions. The battery also lasts for weeks. [Buy it here]
Kindle Fire, £40
If you'd rather add some extra functionality to a your child's Kindle, and ditch their need for a separate laptop, try getting them a Kindle Fire. It's probably not the best tablet out there, but it's small, cheap, and access to the Amazon App Store - with all the free app deals it contains. The battery life isn't the best, so it's a good idea to get an external battery pack to come with it.
It's probably a good idea to get a keyboard and mouse to go with it, and make it more like a proper laptop and a more efficient work tool. This 7-inch tablet case comes with a Bluetooth keyboard, and this Bluetooth mouse does all the essentials. [Buy it here]
External Battery Pack, £13
Whether it's for keeping their phone charged or the tablet they're using whatever reason, it's a good idea for them to have a backup power supply. This one is small, discrete, and has 5,000 mAh of power stored inside. It's not the biggest power pack out there, but it's got enough to charge most devices one time over. It's also small enough that it won't take up much precious room in the schoolbag. [Buy it here]
Kids do not need smartphones, not young kids anyway. They might still need a phone for whatever reason, so get them something cheap, sturdy, useful. The Nokia 130 (£19) has 2G for email, microSD support (up to 32GB), a built-in MP3 and video player, a torch, and other basics like a calculator.
There's also the JCB Tradesman 2 (£44) if you want them to have something slightly more rugged. It's drop-resistant from up to 1.5 metres, and IP67 waterproof. There are no more fancy features, but do they need those? Arguably not.
Epson Expression Home XP-235 All-in-One Inkjet Printer, £34
They're going to need to do some printing at home, especially since not much serious schoolwork is done by hand these days. So make sure you have the hardware to be able to handle it. This one is completely wireless, so they can connect to the printer wherever they are in the house, and it's got a built-in scanner just in case they need to digitise things quickly. [Buy it here]
Ulla Smart Hydration Reminder, £18
Hydration is important, especially when concentration is key. Sitting in a stuffy classroom can make it easy to forget to drink, and this little gizmo will remind them to keep drinking throughout the day. The best part is that this can be attached to any water bottle (or cup), unlike regular smart water bottles. [Buy it here]
Livescribe 3 Smartpen, £126
This is kind of pricey for the kids, but if they're a bit older and still need to hand write stuff during lessons, the Livescribe smartpen is going to make their life a lot easier. It digitises handwriting and beams it across to a smartphone app so that it can be accessed from the computer. The best part is you don't need to buy fancy paper and notebooks - new paper can be printed out ready for use. [Buy it here]
Caseflex Messenger Bag, £21
Schoolbags are important, and getting a decent one can be tricky. This one is nice and cheap, with enough room for any books and gadgetry. It's got a padded interior that keeps everything safe, a comfortable strap, as well as enough pouches for tablets, laptops, and the like. It'salso quite cheap, which is what you need for a bag that might get trashed. [Buy it here]
Featured image: Shutterstock (modified)