After 50 years of experience in residential outdoor education we have found a few "tips and tricks".
- Concentrate on the positive: keep your student looking forward to the great time they will have at High Trails, and remind them of what they are most looking forward to.
- Build comfort and confidence away from home: schedule a few sleepovers with friends who will also be attending High Trails on the weekends leading up to the trip to build familiarity with sleeping away from home.
- Encourage activity: Make sure your student knows that this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and remind them that they will not want to miss out. The chance to learn new things, have fun with friends, and participate in the different Discovery Groups and hikes will be well worth it.
- Prepare as a parent: Sending your child away can be as hard for parents as for students. Prepare yourself for the separation, and act appropriately around your child. Be happy and excited for the experience they will have, and remember that any doubt or uncertainty you show to them could become homesickness once they are away.