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Baby's first backpack? Why it's time to get your child a toddler backpack.

The age at which a child receives their first sports backpack is typically thought to be pre-school or kindergarten. But there's a good case to be made that toddlers are ready for their first backpack even before that inaugural pre-school naptime. Giving your toddler their first backpack at an earlier age is a great way to prepare them for the bookbags, sportsbags and tech bags they'll be carrying in no time at all.

Why would I want to give my toddler a backpack?

Think of giving your toddler their first backpack as a sort of pre-pre-school. Just a major purpose of preschool is to acclimate them to the realities of socialization, a fixed schedule and time away from parents that will mark their experience in elementary school, the gift of an early backpack will help them prepare for their role at pre-school and encourage them to think of themselves as students.

What should be in a toddler backpack?

Obviously, the contents of a toddler backpack will be quite a bit lighter than those of an elementary or even pre-school student. To help prepare them for that student role, add a favorite picture book. Include a notebook and crayons or colored pencils so that they can "take notes" (aka, doodle), as well as a kid's lunch box full of their favorite snacks and a stuffed animal.

What size is a toddler backpack?

You'll want to select a smaller backpack for toddlers, both out of consideration for their needs and their developing body strength. In our book, a small backpack would be roughly 16.5" long, 12.5" wide and 6" deep.

What should I monogram on my toddler's backpack?

Monograms are a great way to put a fun twist on a toddler backpack, and at the same time encourage your toddler to value it and see it as their own. For that reason, we think toddler backpacks present a great chance to get creative with our "make it personal" embroidery options. You can customize it with your toddler's favorite animal, dinosaur, or perhaps a symbol indicative of a future career path, like an astronaut helmet or microscope.

What should I look for when buying a toddler backpack?

When it comes to toddlers, comfort and support is key. You'll want to make sure that you find a backpack with padded shoulder straps and a foam padded back panel to ensure that their first experience with a backpack isn't one that will leave them feeling sore or stressed.

How old are toddlers when they start carrying their first backpack?

The factor that most determines whether or not your toddler is ready to start carrying a backpack isn't age but walking ability. If your toddler's steps continue to veer on the wobbly side, you may want to hold off on giving them a backpack for now. But if they can walk stably on their own, they're ready to add a challenge and take on their very first backpack.

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