Preschooler Checklist


s a first time parent to a child starting preschool this year, there are some items you will want to have on hand and some things you need to know about in the week leading up to your child’s first day at preschool.

Preschool checklist for first time parents. Original photo by david_franklin on Fotolia


  • Backpack: Kids are small at this age and won’t need to carry much so they won’t need anything over-sized, but they will still have notices, paperwork, lunch bags and other small items that they’ll need to get to and from class.
  • Labels: my favourite item for kids going back to school are kids clothing and item labels. They come in fun colours, won’t fade or run, clearly state your child’s name and are extremely durable.
Mabels Labels is a Canadian company selling peel and stick name labels in various styles and sizes. They offer combo packages for all ages from baby to senior citizen and have a great fundraising program that is perfect for schools. Check them out at


Preschoolers are still young enough that there is a good chance that an accident will happen during school hours. Set aside one complete change of clothes in a Ziploc bag for the teacher to keep in the classroom. Label each piece of clothing in the bag with your child’s name (or an easy to apply label) to avoid confusion as, often, your child will only need one or two pieces from the bag at a time. Don’t forget to label the bag too.

The clothes you pack for your childs 'spare change' bag don't have to match. Chances are good that they won't need them during the year so you will rarely see them.
Tip: Pick your least favourite clothing items to go in their clothing bag as you will rarely see them on your child, if at all.

For your clothing bag:

  • shirt (top)
  • pants (bottom)
  • socks
  • underwear

Some preschools ask that you keep a change of clothes in your child’s backpack instead.


You will need one pair of indoor shoes and one for going outside. Both sets of shoes should be labeled to quickly identify their owner.

The preschool shoe labels from Mabels Labels are perfect for young kids. Each set of shoe stickers comes in a pair that makes a picture. When labeling your child’s shoes, you would put one sticker in one shoe, and one in the other so that when your child looks into the shoes, they can see the design the picture makes. If the design isn’t correct then the shoes are on the wrong feet. This helps kids to get their shoes on the right feet if an adult isn’t available to help them each time.

The real first day

Check the back to school procedure for preschool classes. In some cases, the date that grade school starts and the date that your child officially starts preschool are a little different.

Starting preschool is new for many kids so some preschools do a staggered school entry. In our school, the kids each go one day only for 1 hour in the first week to get the kids used to the teachers, the room, and the routine. Then they start on regular hours/days on the second week.


If you aren’t sure if your child needs a snack during the first day, it doesn’t hurt to pack something small just in case. A water bottle, crackers, and grapes will get a preschooler through a couple of hours away and won’t go bad if it isn’t refrigerated.

Tip: Label everything you bring in. Chances are good that if you bought something at a local store, there will be a few others who did too. Labeling avoids confusion and unnecessary bad feelings. In addition to labeling your clothes and shoes, you can also label backpacks, lunchbags, water bottles, jackets, mitts, scarfs, hats and more.
Found in Back to School, Kids