Are you planning to send off your kid to boarding school soon? If yes, then you’re in the right place. Being away from home for the first time will always be terrifying, even more so as a child.
Choosing the right school is just half the battle, and the other half is making your child as independent as they can be in a new environment full of new people, but they can’t do that when they’re not ready. So how exactly will you prepare your child for boarding school? Well, let us help you with that. Here are some tips to prepare your child to go to boarding school.
Keep the Conversations Positive
No matter how excited you or your kid are about going to their chosen school, there will always be a part of them that will be anxious. It’s normal, of course, since they’re going to a new environment without their parents.
That said, according to Bunbury Cathedral Boarding School in WA, one thing you can do to ease their anxiety is to talk to your child about the wonderful experiences they will have, the new friends they’ll meet, and the joys of being independent. Always remind them that you’re just one call away if anything makes them upset, and if needed, you can always go to the school yourself if, god forbid, anything happens.
Establish a Routine
Life in a boarding school is vastly different from a state school or any other campus. That said, it’s essential to prepare them mentally and physically. Being physically ready for boarding school is important since life there will be more structured and disciplined. With that in mind, how will you prepare your child to be there? One thing you can do is to have practice.
First, you can search for the boarding school’s way of life for their kids. And next, you can then copy that lifestyle in the leading months. This way, they’ll know what to expect in the boarding school. Also, they won’t have to adjust too much to live there since they’ve lived that life back home. This will make them less nervous and more prepared physically and mentally for boarding school.
Teach Them Independence
One of the great things that boarding schools teach their students is independence. Away from their homes and families, boarding schools foster independence to let the child develop their way of thinking and living without needing the help and guidance of their parents. However, in the eyes of a child, being away and independent can be a terrifying thought. With that in mind, fostering independence in your child starts at home, but how?
There are several ways you can do this. You can start with small things like making your child make their bed every morning or letting them help with the simple chores at home. And then you can advance further, like teaching them how to cook simple meals and snacks, or let them advance to more complicated household chores like washing the dishes, cleaning the room, etc.
Teach Them How to Deal with Homesickness
Moving to a new school in a new state or country can bring a wave of awful homesickness. All of us have experienced this at the time, and some of us will even still experience this every time we move somewhere new. Some of us can’t even cope with homesickness, so we can say it’s worse for a child.
Luckily for us, teaching your children to cope with homesickness is quite simple. The first thing you can do is to avoid calling them out when they think they’re going to be homesick. Always address that it’s a normal thing to have and that even adults have it sometimes. Next, you can let them bring an item or a toy that will always remind them of home.
And finally, you should encourage them that you’re always there to talk and even visit if they think they’re getting homesick. In this stage, you must let them know you’re always there. Making them feel alone can nurture that homesickness, leading to unhealthy coping habits.
Help Them Pack
One thing that can encourage a child to be mentally prepared for boarding school is to make them feel ready. That said, one thing that you can do is to help them pack. Always ensure that their clothes are fully packed, they have their important items in the bag, and they have that one item or toy that will always remind them of home. This will prepare the child for years to come in boarding school.
Being away from your parents at a young age can be pretty terrifying. However, there’s no need to fret. You can do many things to help your child be mentally and physically ready for boarding school. It will be an important event in their lives to make sure that you tell them that you’re always there and that you will help them with anything, even if you’re miles away.