Boarding schools are a great way to get an amazing education and unique experiences. But sometimes it can be hard for students to adjust. If you are living away from home for the first time, remember that you aren’t alone! While it might be scary at first, pretty soon you’ll feel more comfortable.
Here are some tips to help you get adjusted to your new life as a boarding school student.
1. Ask for Help
Starting a new school can be scary enough, but moving to a boarding school can be even more intimidating. The most important thing to remember is that it is totally okay to ask for help. In fact, the teachers and dorm staff are expecting you to!
The best thing about boarding school is that there is help available to you 24/7. No matter what time of day it is, there will always be someone there for you.
You can ask the teachers and staff questions about anything you need. If you need help learning how to do laundry or finding a classroom, you can feel safe turning to the adults on campus. The sooner you ask questions, the sooner you’ll feel comfortable at your new school.
2. Break Out of Your Shell
When we are put in a new environment, it can be easy to put up walls. But if you close yourself off from everyone and everything, you’ll never have fun at school. It can be hard to try and jump out of your comfort zone, but there are ways to make it easier.
Take Advantage of Orientation
Your school’s orientation will come with a few ice-breaker activities. Don’t be afraid to participate! This is a great time to try and make a few quick friends before you learn even where your dorm is.
Join Clubs, Activities, or Sports
If you are looking to kill time and make friends while doing it, join a club! Boarding schools provide a lot of extracurricular activities for their students. You can try anything from soccer to art! When you find an activity you like, it’ll be easier to find friends with common interests.
Talk to Your Roommate
Many boarding school students won’t be able to pick their roommate. This can sound scary but remember that your roommate is probably just as nervous as you are. It might be awkward at first but it’ll get better.
While there might be some growing pains when it comes to living with your roommate, do your best to get to know them. Try going out to eat or doing your homework together. This is a great way to break the ice, build trust, and make those first few weeks easier for both of you.
Also take time to lay down some ground rules, like when you need quiet time or which of your snacks are off-limits. Don’t be too harsh or stubborn with your roommate, and try to make compromises where you can.
Learn from Others
Boarding schools are a true melting pot of cultures and experiences. Students travel from all over the world to attend boarding schools. This gives you an easy opportunity to ask questions and make some friends. Try to get to know other students by asking them respectful questions about where they come from.
This is a great way to explore other cultures and ways of life. Making friends with people that have diverse backgrounds is a great way to widen your own perspective. Not everyone gets the opportunity to meet such a wide variety of people, so try and use it to your advantage!
3. Bring Things That Remind You of Home
You probably rolled your eyes when people warned you about homesickness, but it’s real! You may feel fine for a little bit, but living away from your family for months at a time can be really hard. Bringing along little mementos can help make those feelings easier to handle.
Bringing pictures, a favorite stuffed animal, or even a blanket from home can be a great way to help fight homesickness. Whatever you choose to bring with you, make sure you keep an eye on it. If it is something that you really want to keep safe, tell your roommate that it is off-limits.
Remember, you’ll still be able to call home! Before you leave for school, set up a weekly time with your parents for a phone call. Being away from your family is hard, but you’ll have plenty of chances to talk with them.
4. Develop Healthy Routines
When you don’t have your parents keeping track of you, it can be easy to do whatever you want, whenever you want. But this is a common issue that students run into and have trouble getting out of. Routines can keep you productive, focused, and organized, and there are a few routines that are especially important for students.
Good hygiene is extremely important to stay on top of. While it can be easy to think you can get away without a shower or brushing your hair, it can be really embarrassing when someone notices. Teenage bodies are undergoing a lot of hormonal changes, and practicing good hygiene can help prevent awkward situations.
Everyone struggles with procrastination sometimes, but it can quickly get out of hand if you aren’t careful. Boarding schools usually give students a study hall period, but you are going to need more than that to get all your schoolwork done.
Between juggling clubs, activities, and school, you are going to be busy! Investing in a planner or calendar is an easy way to keep track of all your responsibilities. Don’t let yourself flunk a class because you forgot a deadline. Your teachers won’t be interested in the excuses.
5. Be Open Minded
Boarding school is a unique opportunity that most people will never experience. It can be easy to be shy and reserved, but walking into it open-mindedly will give you a much better experience.
Say yes to the kids that invite you to sit with them at lunch, or when a teacher invites you to a club meeting after class. Don’t shut out any opportunities; give yourself time to explore everything.
6. Be True to You
At any school, it can be easy to get swept up in what’s cool or uncool. Boarding school is no different, so you should be prepared to encounter cliquey behavior at some point.
Remember that you are worth more than the clothes you wear, the places you live, or things you own. Focus on building friendships with people who genuinely share interests with you and like you as you are. Never try to change yourself to match what other people think is cool.
The fact is, nothing is better than being unique. And you can only be unique if you be yourself! It might sound cliché, but you’ll be much happier in the long run.
Remember, even though boarding school can seem scary at first, you’ll get used to it. Try your best to step out of your comfort zone and try new things. Boarding school isn’t a punishment, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience that not everyone gets to try.
Collegeboxes Can Make the Transition Easier
Moving into boarding school can be a headache, so let Collegeboxes do the heavy lifting! Once you get everything packed up, we can swing by and pick up all your belongings. From there, we will store them at a nearby U-Haul location until it’s time to move in. And when it’s time to head home for summer break, Collegeboxes can swing by and store your items for the summer and return them at the start of the next school year!
At Collegeboxes, we try to make your move as seamless as possible. This way, you can focus on making your first year of boarding school an awesome one. Don’t wait, sign up with us today!