Is Your Teen Headed Back to College?  6 Strategies for Success

Is Your Teen Headed Back to College? 6 Strategies for Success

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Have a teen headed back to college?

Before they leave, sit down and talk with you teen about what their expectations are for the next semester. Do they have any worries? Do they need some different strategies to move forward? Honest conversations and a listening ear might go a long way towards easing their minds.

Going to college is stressful, even under the best of circumstances! Classes, roommates, scheduling time for activities and studying are all considerations. Encourage your teen to think through some strategies for success before they head back to school. *This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is here.

(As our teens head back during this time of COVID, be sure that you have some of these conversations that you might not otherwise have to think about. Let them know of any plans that might need to be if their campuses are suddenly closed down–what should they do?)

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Get more sleep

There are so many studies pointing to the fact that our teens need an average of 9 hours of sleep. Encourage your teen to have a fairly regular bedtime routine, and they should also know that naps are  a great tool for college survival -they can actually boost their brain health!

Have a working schedule

Note the use of the word “working”. That means that the schedule is a work in progress. Tweaks and adjustments can be made at any time to make it more functional. If something isn’t working, then change it.

As your teen is headed back to college, they need to schedule in plenty of time for studying. If your student has a part-time job, then maybe it needs to be more part time. Keeping track of grades is a great indicator of any adjustments that need to be made.

Study

Have a frank discussion with your teen about your expectations for grades versus the amount of partying that you might be seeing on your teen’s Instagram. If you are paying for their education, then it is all right for you to set the parameters.

Tidy Up

How many of you are addicted to Marie Kondo’s show, Tidying Up? I binge watched the whole first season! Tidiness is not my strength at all. But, I do know that when my space is clear and things have their own place, it is so much more relaxing and comfortable.

Encourage your teens to try to keep their space back in the dorm/apartment fairly clean. It will help with their concentration for studying and with their sleep as well!

I know my boys have enjoyed having their own rooms for the break-space and room to really spread out! Of course, their rooms are complete messes right now, so I will be happy for those rooms to be clean again.


Talk to the roommate

Your teen is headed back to college, so encourage them to have a discussion with their roommate about next semester now. Let your teen know that their roommate may have things that they want to say to them as well. It is a conversation that could relieve a lot of pressure on both sides.

Start the conversation with the roommate by asking if there is anything that they would like to be different for the rest of the year or for the upcoming year. Hopefully, that will open up a dialogue. Remind your teen to stay positive, and not accusatory.

Try to find compromises for the main things that are bothersome to each roommate. They might even try to write a roommate agreement for this next semester.


Exercise regularly

One more thing for your your teen headed back to college to remember, is that exercise is one of the best stress relievers there is! This is a great thing for them to add to their working schedule, and make a real effort to fit it in at least 3 times a week.

Going to the gym is a great place to meet up with friends or to make new friends. Your teen should try different classes, different workout times, and different workouts to see what works best for them. There is no perfect answer, but switching things up is good for their body and makes things more fun, too.

Here are some ideas for equipment for a dorm room or small apartment -encourage them to ask a friend to come work out together!

Exercise is important as your teen heads back to college!  

As your teen is headed back to college things should hopefully be better if they consider trying even a couple of these strategies. Let them know you are always at the other end of a phone call or text, and that you love them no matter what.

Also remember that these kids will dump their buckets on us, and move on, so don’t take their stress on yourself either. Keep the lines of communication open, and keep encouraging them to take baby steps toward relieving their stress. Every little bit helps!

Do you have any good ideas for student stress relief? Please share this post with a friend, if you think that it would help someone’s child away at college. Remember, you can always pin it for later as well.

Related posts:

Backpack Essentials for High School and College,

What Will Your Freshman Actually Need in Their Dorm Room?

Dorm Room Storage Ideas: 15+ Easy Hacks

10 Tips For Making a College Care Package,

Preparing an Emergency Road Trip Kit for Your Teen

You Have An 18 Year Old: Be Aware Of These Little-Known Facts

Best Year Round Posts for Parenting Teens and Tweens: 50+ Titles

A wonderful post written by a good friend of mine about going back to school. It has all sorts of links to many teen/college bloggers. Check it out here!

I would love to stay in touch!

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teen headed back to college

27 Best Books To Read As A Young Adult For Success

27 Best Books To Read As A Young Adult For Success

Best books to read as a young adult

I am passionate about reading. Books take you places. Teach you things. Create memories. This booklist is by no means complete. However, as I thought about the best books to read as a young adult, I thought about the things I wish that I had known more about -the subjects that my husband and I tried to at least introduce to our boys.

I split the list into four categories and an additional list. This is one time that I don’t recommend for your teen to read all of them. Check out each list, read the synopsis of each, and then choose one from each. You know your teen better than anyone, so base the choice around that knowledge. These also lend themselves to being read aloud, and then have multiple conversations. *This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is here.


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Best Books To Read As A Young Adult

Self-help books

-the use of one’s own efforts and resources to achieve things without relying on others-the use of one’s own efforts and resources to achieve things without relying on others

How to Win Friend and Influence People -Carnegie

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living -Carnegie

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People -Covey

Do Hard Things -Harris and Harris

Make Your Bed -McRaven

The Happiness Project -Rubin

Standing On My Head -Prather

Books about finances

-the management of money and includes activities such as investing, borrowing, lending, budgeting, saving, and forecasting

The Millionaire Fastlane -Demarco

Total Money Makeover -Ramsey

How to Adult: Personal Finance for the Real World -Cousineau

Generation Earn -Palmer

The Millionaire Fastlane -Demarco

Books about mindset

-the set of beliefs that shape how you make sense of the world and yourself:  influences how you think, feel, and behave in any given situation

The Power of Now -Tolle

The Last Lecture -Pausch

Am I Overthinking This? -Rial

The Myths of Happiness -Lyubomirsky

A Whack on the Side of the Head -von Oech

Books about relationships

-the way in which two or more people or groups regard and behave toward each other

The 5 Love Languages -Chapman

Boundaries -Cloud and Townsend

The Truth About Dating, Love, and Just Being Friends -Eastham

General books about adulting

-the practice of behaving in a way characteristic of a responsible adult, especially the accomplishment of mundane but necessary tasks

Adulting Made Easy -Morin

Welcome to Adulting -Pokluda and McConaghy

Adulthood for Beginners -Boyle This is a more humorous approach

Adulting: How to Become a Grown-up in 535 Easy(ish) Steps -Brown

Being an Adult: The Ultimate Guide to Moving Out, Getting a Job and Getting Your Act Together -Tobin and Poole

Launch: A Guide to Adulting -Montanez and Merck

How to Adult, A Practical Guide: Advice on Living, Loving, Working, and Spending Like a Grown-Up -Goldstein

Do Your Laundry or You’ll Die Alone: Advice Your Mom Would Give if She Thought You Were Listening -Blades

The best books to read as a young adult

This has been a fun topic to research. I hope that these books help in your parenting journey!😀 Please check out the posts below, especially the one about your teen turning 18- there are so many things to know legally.

Related Posts

Best Year Round Posts for Parenting Teens and Tweens: 50+ Titles

You Have An 18 Year Old: Be Aware Of These Little-Known Facts

7 Best Books for Parenting Teens

Best Social Justice Books For Teens

I would love to stay in touch!

Visit my Facebook page, and follow me on Pinterest and YouTube! I look forward to seeing you again! And, finally, if you feel like this post was helpful, please share it on your favorite social media platform! Thank you so much!❤️ 

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Best Books To Read As A Young Adult

How To Pack An Emergency Road Trip Kit

How To Pack An Emergency Road Trip Kit

Is your teen ready to come home at a minute’s notice?

Guess what? We are living in the day of weird circumstances, and we need to be prepared. Our teens need to be prepared. Is your teen going back to college? What if campus suddenly closes down again? What if there is a family emergency that your teen needs to leave for on a minute’s notice? Here are some ideas for an emergency road trip kit for your teen.

Colleges are preparing for the return of students, for whatever that may look like. Is your teen preparing to head back to college? Is your teen headed for the first time?

We need to help our teens to prepare for any type of circumstance so that in the moment of an emergency, they won’t need to think about it. Here are tips for packing an emergency road trip kit. These tips are good for us to remember as well!

Do you have a new driver? Here is a post for that.

*This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is here.

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Emergency road trip kit|www.parentinghighschoolers.com

A bag to pack in

This set of 4 mesh bags. These will need to be filled with all of your teens favorite personal items. When purchasing things for this next school year, whether it will be a dorm room or apartment, go ahead and purchase some travel size items for this bag. Don’t forget a brush, and toothbrush with toothpaste. And, make sure your girls don’t forget some personal hygiene items.

Packing cubes will provide a little bit more room. Maybe use these for a quick change of clothes, dividing by category.

If you would rather purchase a kit that is already prepared, here are some really great ones!

General supplies

Car phone charger -Be sure to remind your teen to always keep their phone charged.

Flashlight, and they need to be sure to regularly change out the batteries!

First aid kit to leave in the car!

Kitty littler because if your teen gets stuck then this can be poured down for traction. Road salt or sand will work as well.

Duct tape is always a great thing to have around. You never know when it might come in handy.

Here is a handy road distress kit to throw into the trunk -just in case!

Medications and/or medical supplies

Please remind your student to keep their meds locked up in some sort of a safe. We found out the hard way that this type of theft is very common on college campuses. Here are other size safes for this type of situation. Remember to remind your teen to have a few over-the-counter drug items in their car as well, such as Advil for a headache that will come with stress.

Here is a pack that is already prepared for you! All the details already thought out for you!

Weekly medicine organizer which can be used all the time anyway.

Here is a pouch for all kinds of medicine.

Cleanliness items

Wet wipes are really hard to come by, but a travel size would be great.

Antibacterial hand wipes are a must. If you cannot find any, here is a recipe for making your own.

Liquid hand soap can be put into a smaller bottle for travel. This is great if your teen needs to stop and remembers to take it in in case there is nothing in soap dispenser!

 

Spray disinfectant for quick cleaning after visiting a gas station or wherever.

Covid supplies

Face masks -Sign of the times we live in, but having a pack of these in the car is something we all ought to be doing now, especially if traveling.

Disposable gloves -Another item to have in your car for pumping gas, exchanging money or even going in to use a restroom on a road trip.

 

Anti Touch, No-Touch Door Opener -This thing is a stylus, hands-free button-pusher, cool little gadget! We should all be carrying this in our wallets. This is one of the most multifunctional tools that I have seen.

Food for the road

Have a few snacks on hand, just in case. Even just one or two in one of the above bags is a great head start for a quick trip.

Trail or nut mixes are great for travel.

Frooze balls, these are yummy.

Money or gift cards

This is super important. They should put some cash in small bills, 20s or less in their safe to grab on the run. Also, if they have a credit card, they need to be sure to have that with their driver’s license. Having a few gift cards would be great if they need to stop for food or gas anywhere!

The Amazon Rewards card is great because you win when they spend. Having a credit card will be peace of mind for you if they do end up on the road. Our oldest got his first credit card his junior year of college. I think that this depends on the teen and their responsibility level.

Fast food gift cards are a great idea!

Winter emergency road trip kit

Remind your teens that even if they don’t wear a coat, they should have one in the car for a road trip in case something happens. Same with boots and possibly a heavy sweater, especially if they are going to be traveling through cold weather states.

In cold weather, they should keep at least half a tank of gas at all times. Before a longer trip, your teen should have their car serviced or at least have a trip check. Remind them a couple of weeks before a trip to make an appointment to get their car taken care of by a mechanic.

Jumper cables -These are actually good at any time, but for sure in the cold weather.

Ice scraper -Just put this under the seat until cold weather hits. I like this one a lot!

Reflective triangles -Again, these are good to have at any time, but especially if something happens on the road.

Emergency blanket or a heavy travel blanket for the road to keep warm, just in case.

Snow shovel -I like this one, it’s a 3-in-1. it’s collapsible and has a couple of attachments.

Some things to think about at any time

Help your teen to learn to know where the nearest exit is no matter where they are. Movie theater, mall, restaurant etc. If Covid has taught us anything, it’s that you can take nothing for granted. Our kids and teens need to be able to think on their feet. When we notice out loud things like seeing where exit signs are, keeping track of directions on the way to a new place or even reminding them that they really shouldn’t open a door to strangers-even now that they are older, we are helping our teens to be more prepared for emergency situations.

I am not saying that we need to become doomsday preppers, but helping our teens to be ready for anything will reduce their stress in the event of an emergency.

Be sure that your teen knows to have their car regularly maintained. Another thing that we have told our teens is to always have at least half a tank of gas these days, just to be sure they can get out of town at the very least.

Here are GPS trackers for your loved ones in case of an emergency or a stolen car…

Through readiness and discipline, we are the masters of our fate.” -Bill Paxton

This was a different type of post for me. As I was researching this idea, it made me feel a little unsettled. But, I wanted you to think about what your teen may need in certain circumstances. This is not something that we might have thought about even 6 months ago. But, being prepared is never a bad thing. This preparation will take some of the extra stress away if something were to happen when your student is away at school.

I hope that this emergency road trip kit is not necessary, but I hope that your teen takes one as they head back to school!

Related posts:

What Your Freshman Will Definitely Need in Their Dorm Room,

Is Your Teen Headed Back to College? Tips for Success,

15 Ways Parents Can Help a Stressed Out Teen

Best Year Round Posts for Parenting Teens and Tweens: 50+ Titles!

I would love to stay in touch!

Visit my Facebook page, and follow me on Pinterest and YouTube! I look forward to seeing you again!

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emergency road trip kit

Ways to Keep Your Child Safe at College

Ways to Keep Your Child Safe at College

How can you keep your child safe at college?

This is something that I think we all worry about when our kids are gone to college or out into the real world. This worrying will never stop for us, but we can rest a little bit easier if we prepare our kids. Here are some easy ways to keep a child safe at college -or as safe as possible without the bubblewrap!

These are discussions that should probably start a little bit at a time in middle school as they start to go out with friends. We trained our boys to always be aware of where they were. To look for exit signs. To pay attention to where they were going, and listen closely to directions.

Our kids are getting drilled at school, and we need to talk with them about things that are happening in the news, and have them think about what might be the best thing to do in each situation.

I have come up with some safety ideas that will hopefully ease my mind as well as yours! *This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is here.

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Here are ways to keep your child safe at college.

 Personal safety for your teen

Have some conversations with your teen before they leave for college. Discussions:  About date safety. About “no means no, no matter when she says no”. About having a campus buddy. About being aware of their surroundings. About locking up medications.

College can be so much fun, but our teens need to be make aware of all of this and more. Talk with your teen!

Drink scrunchie -Do you worry when you know your teen is headed out? This nifty little drink cover will keep anyone from easily putting a pill or powder into a drink. It can be worn AS a scrunchie until it is needed! Guys need to use these too, and they could have it in their pockets until needed. Rape is a serious issue, and this is a great defense against it. It comes in 4 colors.

This bracelet is the bomb for your daughter! -And, here is the necklace. These are a little more pricey. They are are pretty, though, and if needed, they would be great to have around. She can just push the button, and it activates a GPS device. No one would ever know!

This hair clip is actually a survival tool! It can be so many things… bottle opener, box cutter saw, screwdriver, wrench, and more! It can also be put on a keychain, just in case.

Here is a great tool to carry for safety. It has pepper spray and a stun gun. It is small enough to carry in a purse or pocket.

Here is a tiny portable charger for your teen’s phone. This is something that they should have charged at all times. If your teen has their phone, they can call for help, take a photo (or video) of their attacker or situation, and find their way home with its built-in GPS and flashlight.

This small device adds onto a lock for a door for more security. This would be good for anyone who would like some added security!

And, here is a door stopper alarm that your teen could put under their door at night if they wanted to fell more secure. 

ICE : Personal Safety App -This will: share your Real Time Location with someone you trust -they can see your current location using this app or any web browser. Keeps track of important medical or support information on Lock Screen for First responders and Doctor.

  • you can save useful information for rescue workers (allergy, medication, condition, identity, organ donor, blood type …) and doctor contact “in case of emergency”.
  • 3) ICE contacts for call in Emergency.

(There are lots of safety apps. Be sure to check into these to get the best fit for your family.)

Guy or girl, they need to be prepared. No matter what we envision for our kids’ relationships, I would rather have them safe than be a grandma, yet.

Once your teen turns 18, a lot of things change for both you and your teen. Check out this post to be sure that you both know the legal ramifications for this big birthday.

Car safety for your teen

Here is an entire post about travel safety for our teens (and ourselves!)

A road distress kit is an easy thing to throw into the back of your teen’s car -just in case!

Personal safety keychain

Anti touch opener -This is great to have in the car for opening doors etc without having to touch them.

If your teen is anything like mine, they wear shorts year round. If they end up in a bad situation during cold weather, an emergency blanket is a great thing to have! They fold up tiny, and can also be something that is thrown into the back of the car.

Health safety for your teen

Mental health safety for your teens

Here is a first aid kit for a dorm room or car -full of supplies that might be needed.

Our son had to purchase a safe for his meds after he them stolen. This is a must if your teen takes any sort of prescribed medication!

Here is some advice from my son who graduated from college last year to your teens going into college, he was president of his fraternity for 2 years, and saw a lot of things… Remember that no one and no club should ask you to do things that you would not normally do. This should be a red flag.

If you have never had an alcoholic drink before, then don’t have a bunch all at once. No one should be making you drink. If you get into a situation that is uncomfortable, say that you have to use the bathroom, and use that opportunity to leave wherever you are. If, for some reason, you cannot leave, text someone, anyone, for help. Tell them exactly where you are and what the situation is.

Online safety for your teen -this is more for your teens at home.

This company has great plans for keeping your teen safe online as well as limiting their screen time, if that is something you are concerned about.

Be sure that your teen knows these basic rules for online security.

Make sure that your teen is aware of the ramifications of sexting. Even if you are sure your teen isn’t doing this, they still need to be made aware -just in case. It is a serious crime, especially once they are 18…

Related posts

Best Year Round Posts for Parenting Teens and Tweens: 50+ Titles!

Travel safety for teens

Sexting and your teen

Mental health safety for your teens

I would love to stay in touch!

Visit my Facebook page, and follow me on Pinterest and YouTube! I look forward to seeing you again! And, finally, if you feel like this post was helpful, please share it on your favorite social media platform! Thank you so much!❤️ 

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Here are ways to keep your child safe at college.

 

Dorm Room Storage Ideas: 15+ Easy Hacks

Dorm Room Storage Ideas: 15+ Easy Hacks

Dorm Room Storage Ideas

How can you create storage in a dorm room? Here are great dorm room storage ideas that will make the space more organized and user-friendly! The great thing about a lot of these ideas is that they are either hidden or utilize space above things that you have to have such as the bed and desk.

Space in a dorm room, even some apartments, comes at a premium! You need to be super planful and intentional to create as much storage as possible! So let’s look at these ideas for maximum storage in a tiny space.

Quick note -that is my cute son #2 on the left with his buddy back when they were freshmen! *This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is here.

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Dorm room storage ideas

We have moved two boys into dorm rooms, and both times, I remember how surprised I was by how tiny the rooms were! I cannot imagine how it would be to have a girl moving into one of those rooms because it was hard enough with boys who don’t really have a lot of “stuff”. These are ways that we created storage for them without giving up any floor space.

If your teen complains about how cramped the room is, all of these ideas could easily be implemented immediately for a little bit of relief.

Do you have any great ideas for storage? Share them in the comments for all of us because we have one more to take to college in another little while, so all tips are appreciated!

Check out these dorm room storage ideas

Dorm room under bed storage

Wide dresser -Essential for all the clothing that won’t fit into the tiny closet!

Underbed storage – This is a good option if the beds are lower.

Dorm room over bed storage 

Headboard with shelves -More logical storage that won’t take up floor space.

Over the bed shelf – And, this is a cool rolling cart that goes over the bed like a hospital tray!

Beside the bed storage 

Bedside shelf -This is great if there is no room for a bedside table. And, here is a cloth version.

Nightstand storage -Great for books, lotion, kleenex, and all the other things….

Stick on the wall caddy -Another thing that you will have to check with the dorm to see if this is allowed, but a couple of these could be really handy!

Extra storage around or in the closet

Magic hangers -These are truly magical. Wish they had been around back in my day!

Over the door shoe storage -I still use this for all of my sandals. Never enough storage for all the shoes…

Storage mirror -This is a little pricey, but it’s great storage that takes up no floor space. Check with the dorm/apartment to make sure that you will be able to hang this where your teen will be living.

Extra storage for the desk area

Over the desk shelf -This is wasted space if you don’t use it!

Desk drawer storage organizer -The space inside the desk should be organized, too.

Other bonus storage ideas

Over the fridge shelves -A fridge is almost necessary to eliminate or reduce snack runs. This will save money in the long run. So, the space above a refrigerater may as well be utilized. Typically, an over-the-toilet shelf unit will work. Or, here is an over-the-microwave shelf. And, here is a small cloth caddy for some extra organization.

 

Ottoman storage -Extra seat. Extra storage. If beds are on risers, this will fit under there.

 Hanging jewelry organizer -The one below locks, which would be good in a dorm room.

Dorm room storage cart! -This can hold so many things, and then be rolled out of the way when not in need.

I hope that this helps you as you try to plan out dorm room storage ideas.

Remember, that any of this storage can be added later if it gets to feeling too cramped! Here are some cute label ideas!

Related posts:

What will your freshman NEED in the dorm?

Best workout equipment for a small space

Backpack essentials for college

Best way to decorate a dorm room for Halloween

Best Year Round Posts for Parenting Teens and Tweens: 50+ Titles!

I would love to stay in touch!

Visit my Facebook page, and follow me on Pinterest and YouTube! I look forward to seeing you again! And, finally, if you feel like this post was helpful, please share it on your favorite social media platform! Thank you so much!❤️

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Dorm room storage ideas

 

 

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