With back-to-school shopping starting up, I figured I’d make a list of my absolute favorite school supplies. These five items are affordable, and life-changing! As a college student who tries to stay organized, I have tested many different products and have found what works for me. Maybe these will work for you, too!
1) Colored Pens
For me, color-coding notes is crucial for remembering information. It keeps me focused while I’m taking notes, and ultimately leaves me with an organized, cohesive set of information. I started doing this in high school, and never looked back! I usually write my notes in class with black pen quickly, then later rewrite them more neatly using colors to distinguish between terms and topics. This helps me retain information by forcing me to write everything down two times. Tedious, but worth it. These colored pens from Staples are my go-to’s.
Although a lot of college students exclusively use laptops for notes, I am a strong believer in good old fashioned pen and paper. The physical act of writing helps me remember lots of information in a short amount of time, and leaves me with a tangible way to study. Binders allow me to move papers around, and take certain ones out if I’m studying on the go. I typically use a 2-inch, 3 ring binder, like this one from Walmart. Highly recommend!
Dividers are a must-have for me. I use them to distinguish between subjects in my big binder. They’re generally very affordable, and make a world of a difference in terms of organization. I love getting ones with pockets so that I can quickly put papers in them in class that aren’t hole-punched. I typically get these ones from Walmart. There’s nothing like the look of color-coded notes in a nice, organized binder!
4) Manila Folders
I don’t know anyone that does this, but I have been doing this for years and love it. I make myself a little DIY filing cabinet for papers I don’t need to carry with me in my binder when I go to class. As an English major, I get tons of papers daily. My backpack, like many others’, is often overflowing with assignments and readings. Creating a filing system for yourself organized by class subject after a unit in class is over will allow you to lighten your backpack and stay super neat. I get my manila folders for very cheap at Target. Make sure you don’t need to bring these papers with you to class anymore before you do this!
5) Desk Organizer
Finally, since most of us will be doing online classes in our bedrooms, I decided to include a desk organizer. I have used one of these since my freshman year at college. I love having a tidy workspace. It allows me to have a clear head. I use this organizer from Target to store my pens, highlighters, and pencils so that my desk stays neat and spacious.