AUGUST 07, 2022

The Back to School Checklist

And just like that, we’re in back to school season. If you have kids high school age and younger who go to school locally, prepping for back to school might include some fun new outfits, notebooks/pens/paper and something to carry all those books in. If you’ve got someone going off to college or boarding school, it’s a different checklist. There are things to think about like bedding, bathroom essentials or what they might want to decorate their room or space with. There’s also the emotional component – adjusting to leaving the home! Whether you’ve seen kids off to school in the past or it’s their first time, we have some resources to ease the transition (for all of you) – whether it’s anxiety, homesickness or embracing the unknown.

Dorm Décor!

First, the fun part! Decorating. Whether your student is living in the dorms or an apartment with a kitchen and living room area, it’s important to know what the space is and what it might need. Our friends at HGTV have 65 decorating ideas along with helpful things to research before you buy. Like, can you have a hotplate in that dorm room and what’s the actual size of the beds (if one is furnished) that you’ll need bedding for. It’s often extra long twins, but check the institution’s website or welcome packet. Then, you can start planning.

Give it a Personal Touch

A dorm room wall is a great way to give the room character, make it personal and perhaps hang things that create positive emotions. Shutterfly had a wide range of ideas from making a photo collage hanging from branches, getting creative with washi tape or making DIY clocks and coasters.

Emotional Prep 101

Whether it’s your first time seeing a student off to school or you’ve done this before, it could hit differently each time. For example, if you have a freshman, you might not have dealt with this before. If you have a rising senior, it’s likely this might be the last year that they come home for extended breaks and that might feel different. has some great tips to emotionally prepare, no matter what the situation is.

Ease Homesickness

While sitcoms and the movies portray kids going off to school as a right of passage or a “gateway to freedom”, it’s not always like that in real life. As excited as a student is to go to school away from home, they can and do get homesick. This article from Save the Student has tips for your young adult to ease some of the emotional distance that’s felt while away. Definitely get them set up with some sentimental things from home that will help them feel closer.