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This Prime Day deal just got my daughter set for back-to-school

Apple Watch SE prime day deal
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

My daughter finished elementary school last month, so when she goes back to class in the fall, it will be at a new school. And as a tween, she's eager to arrive on campus without her dad in tow. I like to think this is because she doesn't want her friends to see how cool I am, and she's too polite to tell me otherwise.

Still, I want a way to be able to check in on her comings and goings, and I've decided the best way to do that is with an Apple Watch SE. Even  better, I was able to snag one at a lower price, thanks to an Amazon Prime Day deal. You can currently buy an Apple Watch SE with cellular connectivity for $269 (opens in new tab), a $60 savings off the regular price for the 40mm model.

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Apple Watch SE (GPS+ cellular, 40mm): was $329 now $269 @ Amazon (opens in new tab)
The Apple Watch SE is a good entry-level smartwatch from Apple, thanks to a large screen and a huge library of apps. It also doubles as good kid tracker, thanks to a Family Setup feature. The cellular version lets your kid make phone calls without a nearby phone.

As you might imagine, Prime Day Apple Watch deals are top-sellers during Amazon's sales event, so the above deal has been available off and on throughout today. Earlier today, for example, I wasn't able to get the 40mm version with cellular connectivity, but a few hours later, the sale price reappeared.

For our family, the Apple Watch SE is a better choice than buying a cheap smartphone, as phones can be tempting distractions from schoolwork. Also, I'm not sure any of us in the family are ready to navigate social networking apps just yet.

The Apple Watch SE, in contrast, provides the needed connectivity without those pitfalls. Because we're getting the version with a cellular connection, my daughter can give us a call when she needs a ride or has to check in with us. And we'll be able to ping her location, thanks to the Family Setup features Apple makes available. It also will run watchOS 9 when that update arrives in the fall, something the Apple Watch 3 can't claim. 

It's for those reasons we recommend the Apple Watch SE as one of the best GPS trackers for kids, even if that's not the device's primary function. Now, thanks to a Prime Day purchase, I'll have a chance to see for myself just how solid a recommendation that is.

Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.