A Parent's Guide to Choosing the Perfect First Backpack for Your Kindergartener

by Bailey Bouwman

The start of the school year is quickly approaching in Prince George, BC and we know that many little one's are making the big transition from daycare to Kindergarten this September. The back to school shopping lists are long, and one essential item is a backpack! Choosing the right backpack for your child's school adventures is important, but it can also be a fun experience that allows their personality to shine through.

At Nest & Sprout, your friendly children's boutique in Prince George, BC, we understand the challenges parents face when seeking a suitable and safe backpack for their little ones. That's why we're thrilled to introduce the newest product from Jan & Jul - the Explorer Backpack, a backpack adventure that's just right for starting the school year. It's also available in a mini size for your preschool kids.

Expert Tips for Choosing the Perfect Backpack for Your Kindergartener

Right Size Matters: When selecting a backpack for your kindergartener, size is crucial. Avoid backpacks that are wider than your child's torso or hang more than 4 inches below the waist.

Opt for a backpack that fits them now instead of buying one they'll grow into. Consider measuring your child's back length to ensure the perfect fit.

Graphic that shows the size measurements of the Jan & Jul Backpacks

Prioritize Comfort and Durability: Comfort is essential for your little one's daily adventures. Look for backpacks with padded shoulder straps and a cushioned backside to prevent discomfort. Additionally, prioritize durability by choosing backpacks made of sturdy materials that can withstand the rigors of kindergarten life.

Optimal Size and Fit: A well-fitting backpack is vital to prevent strain and maintain good posture. Make sure the backpack sits comfortably on your child's back without hanging too low or digging into their shoulders. Consider measuring their back length to find the optimal size. And don't forget to teach them how to use the straps to adjust the fit for their body as they grow and change. 

Safety Features: Consider  selecting backpacks with waist and chest straps. These are not common on younger kid backpacks, but can sometimes be found! They might be important for your family as these features help distribute the weight more evenly across their back, reducing strain.

Don't forget to choose backpacks with reflective materials for increased visibility during walks to and from school, especially in low-light conditions. This is especially important for Northern parents, as you'll find walking to school in the dusk hours requires more visibility. IF your backpack doesn't have built in hi-vis consider adding hi-vis tape or patches to amplify the visibility of the gear. 

Weight Management: Avoid overloading your kindergartener's backpack. Follow the recommended weight limit of 15-20% of their body weight to prevent discomfort and potential health issues. Pack smartly, leaving out unnecessary items, and place heavier items at the bottom and center of the backpack for better weight distribution.

On that first day of school, help them to class with all their items. Remember they won't be bringing home as much stuff on a day to day basis. Just the first few go arounds. 

Organization and Multiple Compartments: Organization is key for a kindergartener's backpack. Look for backpacks with multiple compartments to help your child stay organized and distribute weight more effectively. Utilize the various compartments to separate items and keep the backpack well-balanced.

The Importance of Using Both Shoulder Straps: Encourage your child to use both shoulder straps when carrying the backpack. Wearing both straps evenly distributes the weight and prevents muscle strain and posture problems. Teach them how to adjust the shoulder straps for a snug and comfortable fit.

The Backpack Dilemma: Balancing Functionality and Cuteness 

Finding the perfect backpack can sometimes feel like an expedition in itself. With countless ergonomic features and design choices available, it's easy to feel overwhelmed.


But here's a little secret - it's okay to let your child's personal taste shine through! Last year, I couldn't find anything I really loved for my daughter when she entered Kindergarten, so I just ordered something off a big box store on the internet. 

This year, I'm excited to expand offerings in Prince George with our school bag collection from Jan & Jul. We'll be setting both kids up with the bags so we can run them through the school year! 

Don't be like me though - don't wait until the end of August, because we will sell out. Just like how it's almost impossible to find all the school supplies the first week of September, the best backpacks will also be gone. We can reorder, and restock Jan & Jul backpacks as they sell out and let us know if you have any special requests. 

Introducing Jan & Jul's Little Xplorers Backpack

Jan & Jul, the renowned outdoor gear brand, has done it again!  Designed and tested by moms in the Pacific Northwest, Jan & Jul's products are made to withstand any weather – rain or shine! The Little Xplorers Backpack is a new addition to their lineup, and it's specially tailored for school-aged children from 4 to 8 years old. As a brand that prioritizes safety and comfort, Jan & Jul ensures that this backpack is thoughtfully sized to fit perfectly, providing utmost ease of movement.

With padded shoulder straps and an adjustable chest support strap, the Little Xplorers Backpack offers ultimate comfort for your little one. The backpack's durability, a hallmark of Jan & Jul's commitment to quality, ensures it can handle all the adventures your child embarks on. Its water-resistant Oxford polyester fabric, coated with a DWR finish, keeps belongings dry even during rainy days, while the built-in rain cover provides additional protection.

Safety is always a top concern for Jan & Jul, and this backpack doesn't disappoint. The reflective loops on the front pouch and shoulder straps ensure visibility during walks to and from school, providing peace of mind for parents. The twill cord-attached rain cover stays secure in windy conditions and can be easily detached for cleaning.

With ample storage space and clever organization, the Little Xplorers Backpack keeps school supplies, lunch, and other essentials neatly arranged. Your child will love being able to independently pack their belongings for every adventure, fostering a sense of responsibility and confidence.

Gear Up for Kindergarten Adventures with Jan & Jul's Little Xplorers Backpack!

Choosing the right backpack is a crucial step in preparing your little one for the exciting journey of kindergarten. With Jan & Jul's Little Xplorers Backpack, you can rest assured that safety, comfort, and durability are top priorities! We're excited to add these bags to our home this year, and yours.

At Nest & Sprout, your favourite children's boutique in Prince George, BC, the Jan & Jul bags are expected to arrive August in a more robust line up of prints and patterns to excite the entire family.

Don't wait until the last minute; stock up on the Little Xplorers Backpack now to start the school year with confidence. Get your child ready for their big leap into kindergarten with the perfect backpack designed to withstand any weather – rain or shine, or snow - yes snow, don't forget you'll need snow boots, and a snow coat and all that jazz. Don't worry we are here to help. Check out our blog for more great topics and discussions. 

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