Important Tips & Tricks for Winter Break

Whether your student has been commuting to or living on campus, Winter Break is an opportunity to reconnect. In preparation for these short weeks, we have included a few tips below that we think will be helpful for both you and your student.

1) Be prepared for major changes. Students will have changed a great deal since August- mentally, emotionally, and/or physically. For example, it's a good idea to check if they have become a vegetarian before you carve the holiday ham. Also, if your student has been living on campus and you made major changes, especially to their old room, let them know before their arrival to avoid confrontations.

2) Stock the kitchen. There is nothing like a home cooked meal for a college student.  Ask what meals or snacks students would like during the holidays.  As they reconnect with high school friends, keep in mind there may be unexpected guests at the house from time to time as well.

3) Reexamine house rules and curfews. Students may have had complete freedom at college to go where and when they wanted, with no one waiting up at home.  Enforcing a curfew at home may be difficult and could send a message that you don’t trust them.  Think about alternative ways you can communicate and come to agreements about checking in with each other. Also, revisit any chores that may be expected of them when they are home.

4) Let them sleep. Expect students to do a lot of sleeping. Between the intense studying, social life and sleeping habits, their schedules will have changed dramatically. They are not lazy if they sleep till noon the first few days of break, just exhausted.

5) Make an agenda. Check in with students before they return home to find out what plans they may have already made. Let them know about any family commitments on the calendar but understand they need time to see friends too. Also, schedule any necessary doctor, dentist, or hairdressing appointments ahead of time.