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Starting boarding school, help and advice!

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    ahh... boarding school ... i have just been at a co-ed one for the last 3 years from yr9-yr11 and am quite happy to be moving back to a day school for sixth form

    but dont worry boarding is amasing... you willl make tons of life-long friends and generally have a great time...

    so where do i start

    luggage? its best to take stuff in those wheely suitcases because they are great if you go away for an exeat weekend or something... also taking a few sports bags is a gd idea because u use them for all kinds of things like games ect...

    clothes? i basically take my whole wardrobe... u will need stuff for all weather... take a lot of games kit(because there is so much extra curricular sport-if u like that kind of thing- so it is constantly getting dirty)... dont just take nice stuff as loads of people wear trakkys at the weekend(there is proabably a skl tracksuit)... the most important thing to take though which most ppl dont realise is FLIP FLOPS... at my school you dont see any of the boarders without them mainly because you always have to have something on your feet when out of your room

    photos? our rooms are completley covered in things but i wouldnt take nice framed stuff cos i doubt they will put up picture nails... most people just get a ton of posters from HMV and snaps ect and completley cover there wall with them... TAKE LOTS OF BLUETACK... its also gr8 for revision posters when it gets to this sad time of the year

    roomates? quite a lot of sixth forms like mine have single bed rooms but tbh you are quite lucky if you are sharing because virtually everyone becomes amasing freinds with their roomate... even if they are not normally people you speak with in the day you will find people act very differently from the way they do around there bunch of freinds... my first day was quite akward with my roomate but after that we got on really well i suppose it just depends on your personality

    paper ect? take a pad of paper(my housemaster doesnt like giving it out because it comes out of his budget), a laptop is an absolute must, and a printer is also really handy if you can persuade your parents to shell out but be warned everyone will want to use it

    toiletries? if your close to the city like my school dont take to much just buy when you need it... i wouldnt take too much stuff because everyone in your corridor will want to use it( i bought a pack of 6 toothbrushes when i started and gave away 4 lol)... remember u can always borrow other ppls stuff ;-)

    laundry? most places have staff who do it but you will need some kind of bag to put your dirty washing in to give to the cleaners... the laundry service is great but they have industrial very hot washers at my school so if you have delicate stuff or Primark tshirts/hoodys (they shrink about 2 inches) then u might want to put it in a washing machine which they should provide

    parents? i dont know of anyone who has taken a close friend but no one would mind if you did it is really up to you... some peoples parents help them unpack but others just drop off stuff and then say a quick goodbye... i prefer the latter because i like sorting out my room myself and i prefer to talk with friends ect...

    tips ect...
    take food (it is always popular + great ice breaker)
    GET INVOLVED with everything... boarding school will be one of the funnest times of your life if you get involved and do stuff but if you dont u might find yourself very bored

    Have fun and message me if you have any questions... remember the flip flops lol
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    Thank u to everyone who has replied. You have made me feel better. I go for another trial sleepover after half term and then that is it until September. Flip flops are a good ideathank you. Yes I am at a prep school which finishes at year 6. All my other friends are going to local day schools. My school now is quite small.My new school said there are lots of new people starting but they have a prep school as well so people are also coming from there.Do you take a tuck box ?
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    (Original post by hannahbananah)
    Do you take a tuck box ?
    Ask your school. We never had 'tuck boxes' specifically, but most people would bring back food with them on the weekends etc. It seems really obvious, but make sure it's not stuff that'll go off really quickly - at my day school, we used to have a toastie machine in our common room, and loads of people brought in ham and cheese to use in it. A week later...ew. It was horrible!
    So yeah - stick to things like cereal, crisps, tinned stuff etc, or if you think you might want hot food, make sure it's easy to cook - things like pot noodles, or cup-a-soup are easy, cause your house will almost definately have a kettle. Also, you might want to take hot chocolate sachets/tea bags - ours run out SO quickly. Just make sure that the hot choc sachets are the 'just add water' ones that already have dried milk (:

    Have fun at the trial sleepover!
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    Congratulations on getting in to boarding school! I'm sure your experience will be great!!

    I go to a boarding school in America, so I'm not sure how much it differs from a UK school, but here are some tips you might find helpful...

    In terms of packing, it shouldn't really matter what you bring your stuff in, as long as its either disposable, or you can use it throughout the year. Personally, I think a dorm trunk like the one shown here: http://www.pbteen.com/products/p3195...m?pkey=caccsch is good because it's cute and you can use it as storage during the year (out of season clothes, books you've already read, etc.). That won't hold all your stuff, but any kind of storage bin or bag that can be thrown away should work fine (however I don't recommend cardboard boxes). Also, a small suitcase and duffel bag or tote bag are another good thing to bring because you will probably use those throughout the year.

    Clothes to bring, well I don't have a uniform like you do so I'm not really sure how that works, but a mix of all different sorts of other clothes is a good option. Bringing casual sweatpants and sweatshirts is a good idea for casual weekends, but your friends probably will want to go out some too, so bring cute clothes as well. Jeans will probably be your staple over the weekend. If your family is not able to afford some of the ridiculously expensive brands some other kids may have, look for an outlet mall in your area. That way stuff is a lot cheaper, so you can either get a lot more clothes, or get more expensive brands than you would usually be able to afford. Make sure you also bring clothes for any extra-curriculars you want to participate in, and keep a budget to get additional stuff when you get there that you might not have realized you needed.

    My school doesn't provide stuff like blankets and pillows, and you have to do laundry yourself, but it sounds like a lot of UK schools are different so you might want to check the school website, or call up someone who works there to address school specific questions.

    Your room, well talk to someone to see how much space is provided and what kind of furniture you'll have and stuff like that. Bringing pictures from home may or may not help with homesickness, but can be a good conversation starter (laugh at your crazy dad, talk about how annoying your little brother is... so you can see how much or how little you and your roommate have in common). I also had my friends help me put together a collage of pictures to hang on my wall so I'm always reminded of them. Bring posters of whatever reflects you and your interests.

    Living with a roommate can be a big change, but it will only be awkward if you let it be. It might be scary, but be as brave as you can to muster up the courage and compliment their outfit or hair etc. remember, it will be better in the end even if starting that first conversation is rough. And even if it doesn't work with your roommate, you could see if you could switch, but living on the hall with so many kids your sure to click with someone, and all you really have to do is sleep in your room if the situation gets really bad.

    Remember, boarding school is just like day school, only cooler!! Its one of the best oppurtunities you'll have in your life so make the most of it. Try anything you've always wanted to. Get involved with sports, drama, band, or anything else that interests you, and make it a goal to meet everyone on campus. But of course, your studies always come first, and calling your parents on a regular basis always helps keep your relationship with them alive as well!

    Have a great time and good luck! I hope this helps!
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    (Original post by hannahbananah)
    I start boarding school in September and now I am really nervous and wish I hadnt chosen it. I am only going weekly to start with but we arent allowed home the first weekend. I am only 11. My parents say I dont have to stay if I dont like it. What is the most important thing you should take to boarding school ?
    I boarded from 9-13, and I remember always being so busy I didn't have time to worry about anything! I was a cathedral chorister, so we started with early-morning rehearsals and sang services in the cathedral every day, which probably meant that I was busier than the average student!

    Take with you the normal things that you use for school at the moment; you will need the school uniform, PE kit, you might want to take your duvet and pillow with you, your favourite toiletries (shower gel, shampoo etc), your pencilcase and some spare pens, a hairbrush (one of my roommates forgot hers, which is why I always remember mine now!). I'm sure the school will send you a list of what to bring. If you play an instrument, bring that too - another of my friends managed to forget to bring her cello on the orchestra tour to Italy! You will probably forget something and it isn't the end of the world; no-one ever died from forgetting to take something to school!

    Something else to remember: you are not alone and there are probably 20-30 others in exactly the same position, if you stay with the others in your form then if you do get lost then there are 20-30 of you marching around the school, all lost together, so it can't possibly be as bad as you being lost on your own! That said, if you're the independent type who is always late for things (which would be me, prior to boarding school) then you might find that you miss out on things because you're not with other people.

    Joining clubs and sports clubs also helps you to settle in; it's worth going along to something even if you think it isn't really you, like the French club or the badminton club or the choir, because at least you'll meet new people and will be too busy to worry about things.

    Good luck!

    Edit: If you're going for two weeks at first, then remember that you have probably been on family holidays, probably to a different country where you might not have spoken the language, and where you only knew your parents (and siblings?) for at least that long, and you survived that and probably enjoyed some if it! So even if you really really hate it, two weeks isn't forever!
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    iis a state boarding school or private
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    I'm starting boarding school in a month I'll be in 9th grade. Help!!! We have semi formal clothes(can that be a regular t-shirt)? Also idk what to bring can u help me out 2?
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    I'm starting boarding school soon so this info has been really helpful! So thanks! I was SO nervous but now i'm so excited I can't sleep!

    However, I'm really quiet and not very confident. Is there someone else who was in that situation? How did you get on?!?!

    Thanks!

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Updated: May 11, 2012
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