17 January 2015

Back to School | What's in my Bag?

Hello everybody!

As part of my back to school series, I decided to do a little post about what I carry in my school bag, because I enjoy watching 'What's in my Bag?' videos on YouTube, so I thought you might enjoy a blog post about it.

Last year, I had a Belkin 16 inch basic toploader notebook bag. Honestly, it wasn't that great of a quality. There was a front pocket, and after carrying a few basics in it, like my phone and wallet, the lining tore apart from the bag. This wasn't that big of an issue for me, but later, the shoulder strap broke off at one side. I didn't expect this to happen, as I wasn't carrying an exceptionally large amount in my bag (only my laptop, planner, a book or two, etc.), so this really brought down my opinion of the bag. The zip also broke after a while. I would really not recommend this bag. It might be alright if you were to only use this bag occassionally, but as something that is to be used everyday, I don't think it can survive the daily usage.

This year, I bought a plain black tote bag from Kmart, which was $15. It is quite big (it can fit an A4 sized folder), so there is plenty of room for my books, folder, and laptop. There are also two pockets inside the bag, one which can zip up, and although it may be a little small for a wallet, it will contain things like a phone, keys, etc. I also like that the bag is waterproof, because I am a very clumsy person, and I tend to spill things. Quite often. Another thing I like about this bag is that it zips closed. Most tote bags don't actually zip closed, but I needed a bag that closes properly as I catch public transport to and from school, and standing up on a bus or train with an open bag will only end in disaster. As well as the public transport issue, I also need a closed bag because I fall over a lot. I will fall up the stairs a school at least twice a week. The only bad thing I can say about this bag is that there are very few pockets inside, and as I said before, the ones that are there are definitely too small for me to keep my wallet in. However, I really like this bag, but I will let you know my final review of it this time next year!

The next thing in my bag which I really like is this expanding folder thing. It's a nice purple colour with elastic closures on two of the corners. Inside, there are 13 pockets, each with tabs which have a little slot which you can put a label in. It also came with A-Z labels to slot in, but I probably won't use these, because I think I will make tabs with each of my subjects on. What I intend to do with this folder is to take it to school each day as a sort of "homework folder", so I can use it to store worksheets or sheets of paper I'm given at school, but then move it into my binder once I no longer need it at school. I like this folder because it is quite lightweight and thin, so it is not a as bulky to carry as a binder would be.

The next item is a math book. This may sound a little strange, but I am very particular with the sort of math book I have. I did a little experimenting last year. I had a lined exercise book, which was great!...Until we had to draw graphs. Then this book ran out. I was not prepared for this, so I had to use an empty graph book I had in the cupboard from when I was in primary school. It was one of those 1cm x 1cm grid books, which was far too big, and often resulted in my graphs taking up an entire page. So for the final term, I set out to find the perfect book, which happened to be a 5mm x 5mm grid book with binder holes. Can I just say how difficult it was to find one of these books? It took me 2 hours walking about the entire shopping centre to find it. This year, I have gone for a spiral-bound 5mm x 5mm grid book, simply because I think that spiral bound is nicer, and the pages turn easier, and ripping out pages is much easier than if you were to tear one out of an exercise book. This is by the brand 'Studymate', and I bought it from Officeworks for around $3.50.

These next two items in my bag are the 4-subject and 3-subject books I bought from Big W. I bought these because besides Math, I don't really write a lot in school, because most of our work is done on the computer. However, there are times where I do like to write things down, but I don't really need a whole book for each subject, so I bought these so I always have some paper for each class. When I was buying these, I had the choice between the Spirax subject books, and the Colourhide variety. I chose Colourhide, as it has a plastic front cover, rather than a thin cardboard one, and I thought this would be more durable. Another great thing about the Colourhide subject books is that there are lots of colours. I went for purple and a greeny-blue. I also really like that the dividers in these subject books are brightly coloured cardboard. I don't know if you can really tell from the photo, but the dividers also have little pockets. These subject books come in lots of different subject amounts (for loss of a better term to describe it!!). I think you can get all the numbers up to 5. These were around $7.50 each from Kmart.

The next thing in my bag is this A5 Carnegie 2015 Student Diary. It was only $1.99 in Woolworths! I thought it was a very good price, particularly as it has a lot of features. I intend to write a seperate post talking about planner organisation, but I will just give a quick outline of what this planner has. In the front of the planner, there is a 3-year calendar (2014 - 2016), as well as a page showing all of the public holidays for Australia. I also really like that there is a page for assignments, giving you room to write the subject, requirements and due date. Likewise, there is a page for exam results, where you can write in the subject, result and percentage. There are two pages for contacts, with space available for name, address/email, and telephone. I think one of my favourite features of this diary is the space to write down your timetable, as in my previous diary I had my timetable occupy the notes space. There is also the yearly planner view, which I don't know if I will actually use much. In the back of the diary, there are two pages for notes, which is nice as I find it useful to have some space to jot things down. There is a nice ribbon page marker as well. The thing I love the most about this diary is the purple elephant pattern on the cover. Considering this diary only cost $1.99 I think it is an excellent product.

Next in my bag is my pencil case. Although I use my laptop for most of my classes, as I said before, I do like to write things down. My pencil case is just plain blue, which I bought from Kmart for $0.75. In it, I keep things like black pens (several, because I use these the most and also lose them the most). Blue pens, in case I lose all of my black pens. Red pen, in case I have to mark an exam, which is very unlikely (I think I've used this pen three times in the past year). Highlighters, green and pink, because highlighting things always make reading long chunks of text a lot more appealing. Pencils and pencil sharpener, because I never do math in pen (I make far too many mistakes in math. If I did math in pen, my book would be coloured in with Tip-X). I also keep a ruler, a small stapler, and some post-it notes, because I'm forever writing little notes to myself in my textbooks.

The biggest thing I keep in my bag is my laptop. The laptop I have is the Lenovo x230 Thinkpad laptop. If I am being 100% honest, I would not recommend this laptop to others. It's okay, it does what a laptop needs to do, but it is so ridiculously slow! One time I was in a class (which lasted for an hour), and the entire class was spent with the laptop switching on! Next time I buy a laptop, I will probably steer away from Lenovo. However, on a more positive side, I really like the outside design of the laptop. It is a very thin and lightweight laptop, and the laptop just has a really nice finish to it. I carry this in my bag because as I have already mentioned, my school is considered a "digital learning community", which means we do hardly any work on paper, and most of it is done on our computers. Because this computer is so thin and lightweight, it fits into my bag easily and is not heavy and bulky to carry.

The last item I carry in my bag is my makeup bag. It is plain black, and was only $3 from Kmart. It is quite small, but can carry quite a lot. I'll probably also do a post on what I keep in my makeup bag for school, and review each individual product, but here I'll let you know the basics of what I keep in it. I like to carry a bottle of hand cream, because my hands get quite dry. I also keep a body spray, because I like to be able to smell nice throughout the day. Also, a mascara and lip gloss, to touch up any makeup if it is needed. Some mints, a bottle of hand sanitizer, some hair bands and hair pins, and a small compact mirror/hair brush.

As well as everything I have mentioned, I also keep things like my iPhone, wallet, and keys, but I didn't think I really needed to do a whole paragraph about these!

I really hope you enjoyed this post! If you want, leave a comment below, because I love reading comments! xxx

1 comment:

  1. I liked the bit where you said "a little post" :p. For a laptop I would probably recommend an Apple Macbook/Macbook Air, it's really fast and is just an overall great computer for doing schoolwork. I really love your diary, I actually have one really similar to that, but is just plain blue and came from Officeworks, real cheap. Also, I found what you said about the math book really funny, about how you had to look for about two hours, because I found that one at Officeworks and it took me about 2 minutes. I also happen to think that you are awesome :):).