Oh, the joy of possessing a squeezy water bottle that had Ariel and Flounder chasing each other in circles, as envious glances were cast at the Disney princess-shaped eraser and sharpener sitting on the neighbouring desk on the first day of school.
Back-to-school shopping is a special time in a child's life, no matter how much grief it might cause a harried parent. There's something about seeing, touching and choosing colourful paraphernalia peppered with beloved characters and fun slogans, that appeals to and enlivens the senses.
Putting together a kit of cool stationery in a new bag almost assuages the grief experienced at the end of the long and lazy summer holiday (again, strictly from a child's point of view), and makes the idea of swapping fiction and fun movies with textbooks and digital worksheets a touch more palatable.
While the lenticular pencil boxes of parents' childhoods may have flickered out of style, there is an array of options your child can choose from to start the new term on a cheery note.
Scroll through the gallery above to see the back-to-school products currently on shelves in the UAE
A number of brands have also put together back-to-school kits to make parents' lives easier. Online grocery store Food Crowd, for example, has a snack box with fruit, veg, crackers, juices, chicken nuggets and more that should take care of some of your child's nutritional needs in their first week back. For easy lunch box ideas, click here.
Elsewhere, Cutting Edge salon in JLT and Dubai Marina has a 50 per cent discount on hair cuts for teenagers until Wednesday, August 31; Skechers is selling two pairs of children's shoes for Dh349 (as opposed to Dh229 to Dh2,300 a pop); adidas is offering Dh100 off on every spend of Dh300; and electronics shop Eros has a laptop exchange programme in place.
Malls across Dubai are also holding activations for families as they shop. At The Dubai Mall, for example, in the Star Atrium, find activities such as science-themed workshops and shows from 4pm to 10pm until Sunday, August 28.
In Dubai Hills Mall, there are more science-inspired activities, workshops and weekend shows, with raffle draws open to shoppers, while over at Dubai Marina Mall’s Dome Atrium, there are workshops as well as magic tricks, soap making and a giant memory game for children to put their brains to the test.