A student’s first time at boarding school is a magical and scary time. When you’re not sure what to expect, you generally don’t know what to pack. Students generally need everything they have at home—just in smaller doses. They need plenty of clothes, toiletries, school supplies and ways to keep entertained in between classes and study session. Sending your child to school with the right tools will help him or her succeed at boarding school.
Students will need to pack all their own toiletries they might want to use while away at school. Though they will be able to purchase toiletries and hygiene items at a boarding school’s store or the local store in the town the boarding school is located in, students will want the products they enjoy from home too.
Students should pack shampoo, conditioner, soap or body wash, deodorant, moisturizer and haircare products. Girls will want to pack their favourite makeup as well as hygiene items like tampons or sanitary pads.
Parents will also want to make sure students pack their vitamins and any medications they need as they might not be able to get certain medications on short notice in the town where their school is located.
Students will need all the same school supplies they would need at home while at boarding school. Parents should ensure students pack pens, pencils, notebooks, folders, scrap paper, books the school does not provide, art supplies (if necessary), calculators, rulers and other supplies that students will need to complete their coursework.
Usually, boarding schools send out lists of supplies that students will need throughout their time at school.
Emergency Homesick Box
While boarding school can be an exciting time, it’s common for students to feel a little sad or homesick from time to time—especially at first. Since many students attend boarding school in a foreign country, they might not be able to find their favorite products or foods, making homesickness that more unbearable.
Parents should pack their kids’ favorite items to ensure they don’t feel so isolated or scared. They should also send care packages at regular increments so students feel loved and remembered back home.
Some items that students can pack to feel safe during times of homesickness are their favourite candies or snacks, a few of their favourite books or new books by their favourite authors, a laptop with a DVD player to watch some of their favourite movies, photos of friends and families, letters from Mom, Dad and any siblings or friends to be opened only during time of homesickness or sadness, some of Mom’s perfume and one of Dad’s t-shirts.
School Uniforms and Clothes
Kids will need clothes for both classes and weekends. Though the average boarding school provides mandatory uniforms, some allow children to wear school-approved street clothes to classes. Even if the school provides a uniform, children should bring at least two to four outfits to wear on weekends and days off from school. These should be comfortable clothes. Students will also need sleeping attire, like pyjamas for both cold and warm weather, t-shirts, sweatpants and sleep shorts. Some students like to use sleep masks or earplugs to help them sleep in dormitories. Students should bring at least one “dressy” outfit for school dances or parties.
While kids will spend the majority of their time socializing and studying at boarding school, they will need ways to unwind. They should bring plenty of books, DVDs, games and other ways of keeping entertained. They should bring a laptop to send regular emails home to Mom and Dad and to stay abreast of current events and news topics, back home and around the world.