Back to School—Everything Your Child Needs for a Well-Stocked Dorm Room

written by: Eagle Hill School
It’s that time of the year again—purchasing school supplies, items for dorm rooms, and clothes, and stockpiling food for the first day on campus. While all of this can be overwhelming at first, especially for parents of first-time boarders, a detailed list will be your best friend in keeping organized and making sure that nothing is missed.

Don’t Skip the Essentials

In the fray of preparation for the upcoming year, it’s easy to forget some of the most basic things that will be necessary for your child when they are away at school. Here’s a list of some of the essential items students should arrive with at boarding school:
  • Bedding: Pillows and pillowcases, sheets, and comforter
  • Bath towels
  • Clothes hamper
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste (an extra won’t hurt)
  • Soap, body wash, and shampoo
  • Alarm clock
Prepared for Class

While some items may be provided by boarding schools or sold in the student store, it’s important to make sure your child has everything they need on Day 1 to kick things off the right way. There’s nothing worse than feeling unprepared when school is already overwhelming on its own. Make sure your child has the following to give them the confidence they need for a successful first day:
  • Backpack
  • Pens, pencils, and colored highlighters
  • Notebooks and binders (one for each subject)
  • USB drive
  • Combination lock
  • Index cards
  • Calculator
  • Computer or other assistive technologies
Dressed to Impress

It’s important for your child not only to feel stylish this fall, but ready for the colder weather. Since home might not be right around the corner, it’s wise to pack a season ahead—you can always swap wardrobes out over spring break. Does your school have a dress code or special dinners that require formal attire? Think about a range of different things your child might need:
  • Oxford shirts or blouses
  • Pants or skirts (dress code approved)
  • Dress shoes (dress code approved)
  • Formal attire
  • Sneakers or cleats for athletics
  • Athletic wear
  • T-shirts
  • Jeans for after class or weekends
  • Sweaters and coats
  • Hats, gloves, and boots
Depending on where your child is going to school some of these items may vary. The important thing is to give some serious thought to what they will need a few months from now.

Making It Home

It can sometimes be a challenge for a child to live away from home. Unfamiliar people and places can make it difficult to settle in and feel comfortable. For that reason, it’s wise to consider what your child might like in his or her room to help provide some of the comforts and familiarity of home:
  • Poster of favorite band
  • Pictures of friends and family
  • Artwork
  • Additional mood lighting
  • Floor cushions
  • Speaker for music
  • A care package of their favorite snacks and beverages (sharing snacks is a great way to make new friends)
When thinking about what to pack for your child, focus not only on the essentials, but what is going to help provide them with the easiest transition. No one knows your child better than you, so use your imagination when putting your list together—you can even ask for their feedback. Don’t worry about them not liking what you’ve chosen; they’ll appreciate it later.
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What is Learning Diversity About?

Learning Diversity is a blog hosted by Eagle Hill School where educators, students, and other members of the LD community regularly contribute posts and critical essays about learning and living in spaces that privilege the inevitability of human diversity.

The contributors of Learning Diversity come together to engage our readers from a variety of disciplines, including the humanities, social sciences, biological sciences and mathematics, athletics, and residential life. Embracing learning diversity means understanding and respecting our students as whole persons.


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Eagle Hill School

An innovative approach to LD education in a classic New England boarding school environment, where diverse learners achieve success.