What do you remember about school supplies and the beginning of a new year? When you walk into a modern classroom you won't see a chalkboard or an A/V cart with a strapped-on TV and VCR. However, you still might be able to send your kids with some of these retro school supplies.

Mr. Sketch Scented Markers

Remember those markers that had a smell? You popped off the cap and inhaled red cherry, green mint, light blue raspberry slushy, dark green apple and my personal favorite blue blueberry. The ink colors seemed somehow juicier and more vivid than the plain Crayola markers and made notebook paper smell like a package of hard candy.

Pick up "Mr. Sketch Scented Stix," a similar product at the Wal-Mart on South Broadway in Tyler or order the chunky old-school type online and have them delivered to your Tyler or Longview Sam's Club.

Tin Character Lunch Boxes

The first day of school, one of the coolest things in your backpack was likely a lunch box featuring He-Man, Voltron, Barbie or Strawberry Shortcake. The surface of the front was always raised around the main character's silhouette, and as the year went on your hero's face got scratches that only added to their character.

It's harder to find metal lunch boxes now, but you can still send your child to school with their favorite characters. Amazon sells Hello Kitty, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Frozen and Star Wars metal lunch kits, but be sure to check sizes before you order. Some look like lunch boxes, but they're actually smaller keepsake or decorative tins.

Trapper Keepers

I bet in the 80's teachers got so sick of hearing kids rip open the velcro on these retro binders. Mental Floss calls Trapper Keeper "one of the most recognized school brands of all time."

The three-ring binder organized your pencil pouch, metal protractor, book reports and notebook paper but that wasn't really the point. Trapper Keepers were cool, with designs from Lisa Frank, Garfield, Sonic the Hedgehog and Lamborghini.

You can still buy a Zipper Binder in-store at Office Max in Tyler or Office Depot in Longview. They work the same, but they lack the magic of the past with their plain blue, red or camo nylon covers.

4-Color Ballpoint Pens

These pens were fun, but I always felt a little ripped off by the black and blue ink choices. I had those colors already in my regular pens.

Now they're even cooler than they were when they made their debut. Grab your student one in pink, purple, lime and turquoise or kick it up a notch with this eight-color pen available at Tyler and Longview Target stores.

What about you, what were your favorite school supplies? Let us know in the comments.


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