5 Tips to Prepare for Your Kid’s First Semester of College
It seems like just yesterday, your kid was crawling around, pulling books off of the shelf, and taking midday naps. However, they’ve now graduated high school, it’s summer, and they’re preparing to go off to college.
It can be a challenging transition for everyone, and your preparation will determine how smoothly things go. Here are five tips for getting your kid off to college without too much hassle.
Table of Contents
1. Life Skills
Hopefully, your kid has learned basic life skills by now. There may be a few details that you want to go over. Important life skills to review are:
- Laundering and ironing
- Car maintenance
- Time management
Ask your child what they are feeling confident about doing alone and what things they’d like your help to go over before they leave.
When moving out, what your child will need depends on where they will be living, their roommates, and more. However, you can help them pick out basics, like bedding, towels, lamps, storage containers, exercise equipment, rugs, and basic pantry items.
Include at least a few easy meals that they can quickly prepare while they settle in. It can also be a good idea to purchase some detergent, personal hygiene items and toilet paper before they go.
New clothing can be expensive but may be a good idea. College is a new chapter and a fresh start for students. A few new pieces in their wardrobe can give them a little boost of confidence as they head out to make new friends, impress their professors, and start adulthood.
3. Look at a Car
Go car shopping. They may want that new Honda for sale, and you may have been thinking of purchasing a used vehicle. Either way, a car is extremely useful for college students. Shopping and getting to class are easier, and getting home to visit will be easier as well. Finding the perfect car can take a while, so get started early.
4. Family Time
Even if your kid isn’t moving hundreds of miles away, college often means more time with friends and less time at home. Take advantage of the summer and do plenty of family activities together. They may have a job and want to hang out with friends, but it’s important to take the opportunity to have quality time together before they head off.
A short road trip, a bonfire at the beach, a movie marathon, or a family scavenger hunt can all be fun family activities that also don’t require spending a lot of money.
Encourage your kid to get a summer job. The more they can save before they go, the better. Whether they’re working their way through college, have a full-ride scholarship, or have your help with tuition, college entails outings with friends, buying expensive textbooks, and other expenses. Building up their savings beforehand is a good idea.
Letting Them Go
When it’s time for your kid to leave the nest, you may be wondering if you’ve done all you can to help. Try and calm your mind and remember that you will always be there, but it’s their time to go figure out the world.