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9 awesome back-to-school outfit ideas for elementary school students

Summer is wrapping up, and a new school year means new styles. The jump between grades for elementary students can seem daunting, so setting up your student with clothes to boost their confidence can go a long way. Elementary school kids are still interested in the latest trends and want to look their best as they make their way back to school. Take some time to determine what your child needs and might like as you set out to buy back-to-school clothes.

What to consider before shopping for back-to-school clothes

Narrow down your choices

If you prefer letting your student in on the shopping, save time and energy by filtering through their options. Look for brands you trust that are within your budget and suit your student’s style, and present them with what you find. This prevents your shopping experience from being overwhelming while adhering to the limits you set.

Shop intuitively

If you’re shopping online for back-to-school clothing, keep an eye out for potential marketing ploys. The top choice online may not be the most well-reviewed or cheapest option — it may be a promoted advertisement. Once you find your favorites, research the pieces and explore the cost online. You may find the same items cheaper on other websites, saving you money while still being able to buy the items you want.

Get inspired

Spend some time with your child exploring their style. Go on Pinterest, watch their favorite movies or just discuss what colors and patterns they like. This is not only an opportunity to connect with your kid on their interests, but it can also get them excited about piecing together new outfits for the school year. Raising morale for going back to school can relieve a bit of stress about going into a new grade for you and your child. 

Assess what’s needed

Your student may have what they need to enter the next school year, so it’s important to check your stock before you shop. Kids grow quickly, so check to see what fits and what needs to be replaced. Just the same, if your budget allows, they may want to explore new colors, patterns and materials to use in their wardrobe.

How do you put together an outfit?

Most outfits follow a formula. Try these tips:

  • Layering: Use basics from your wardrobe, such as a solid T-shirt or pants, and add on jewelry, a fun-colored cardigan or a textured jacket on top. Add layers on top of the outfit so if the temperature changes, your child can shed layers for comfort.
  • Complementary coloring: Use colors that blend well together, for example, a pale blue skirt with a pale orange top. Next, blend these colors with accessories that use either color and piece it all together — the color wheel is your best friend.
  • Accessorizing: Transform a basic set of clothes with accessories of your liking. This is a great way to express yourself when you don’t have a large set of clothes to choose from.

Best back-to-school outfit ideas for elementary school students

Top wardrobe basics for elementary school students

Levi’s Girl’s 7-16 Jean Jacket

Jean jackets are a universal closet staple used for layering or as a statement piece for an outfit. This jacket is made of cotton, and it’s machine-washable, so it’s ready to handle any mess that happens in the classroom or on the playground. It’s available in two washes.

Sold by Kohl’s 

Adidas Big Kids Superstar Casual Sneakers

These unisex sneakers are a retro classic first designed in the 1960s. They’re made of leather with rubber soles and a hard toe to prevent injury to the foot. They’re a great choice for recess enthusiasts who want a simple, versatile sneaker.

Sold by Adidas and Macy’s

Tek Gear Boys 8-20 Graphic Tee in Regular and Husky

Available in 3 designs and colors, these graphic tees can liven up any pair of pants or shorts. They are tag-free to prevent sensory issues and use Dry Tek technology to wick away sweat.

Sold by Kohl’s

Top layering clothing pieces for elementary school students

Sangtree Men & Boy Long-Sleeve Flannel

This flannel shirt can be worn on its own or layered on top of a graphic tee for chillier days. Offered in several colors and designs, this flannel is an opportunity to bring in a pattern on top of a graphic or solid shirt. It’s a cotton blend, wrinkle-free material.

Sold by Amazon

French Toast Girls’ Anti-Pill Crew Neck Cardigan Sweater

Cardigans are an efficient layering piece. Put this sweater on top of a blouse, T-shirt or long-sleeved shirt to bring a pop of color or to add more shape to the outfit. This sweater is made of acrylic and has dainty button closures. It’s offered in six colors.

Sold by Amazon

Wrangler Boys’ Western Lined Jacket

This jacket has a cotton lining that keeps your kid warm and adds texture on top of any shirt. Brown reversible cuffs add a pop of color and dimension to the design. Button closures line the exterior of the jacket. It’s offered in sherpa or fluffy blanket lining.

Sold by Amazon

Top accessories for elementary school students

Boao 18-Piece Glitter Butterfly Hair Clips

Hair accessories can elevate an outfit, and these glitter butterfly clips do just that. This set includes 18 butterfly clips to incorporate into your child’s hairstyle. There are 11 sets of clips to choose from, and each set showcases its own color scheme in a variety of patterns.

Sold by Amazon

Levi’s Boys Reversible Belt

This belt dresses up any pair of pants calling for a more tailored look. It is reversible and has a black and a brown side, allowing you to match shoes accordingly. It’s faux leather and available in three sizes.

Sold by Kohl’s

Turandoss Tiny Initial Necklace for Girls

This necklace can add a personal touch to any outfit. With nickel-free, 14-karat gold-plated brass, it’s durable and hypoallergenic. It can be layered with other necklaces or worn on its own for a simple and elegant accessory.

Sold by Amazon

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Isabella Acitelli writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.

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