Moving is hard on everyone in the family, but for kids moving is even tougher. Leaving friends, teachers they know and a school environment they’re comfortable with makes it difficult for them to transfer to a new place. So before you move, find out how to help your child not only manage through this difficult time but thrive in their new place. When adults themselves find it hard to deal with change, imagine children!
Here are a few parenting tips on how to smooth the move into new city and school:
Discuss the reason for the move
The more you involve your kids in the transition, the more comfortable and confident they will become. Explain as much as you can about the decision to move, the new area and the new school. Encourage your kids to ask questions and express how they feel about moving.
Let your kid express themselves
Share with them how committed you are to supporting them and helping them find balance in every way you can. Are they worried about losing existing friendships or failing to find new ones? Are they nervous about activities they love which might not be available in the new school? Or are they scared they won’t find the bathroom when they need it? Encourage your kids to articulate their feelings, respond with empathy and then see what you can do to alleviate specific fears and worries.
Focus on the good side
During your discussions with your child, ensure you keep them excited about the move by focussing on the “excitement”. You can list out the good things about the place and new school and the new things your child will learn and see.
Show them the place
Drive around the new neighborhood, making sure to notice any important landmarks, parks or buildings. Keep an eye out for points of interest that would be special to your child. If the place is too far, then show your child the place on Google maps/ or pictures of the place, so that the new location doesn’t come as a shock to your little one.
Give it time
Give your child the time and space to adjust; don’t expect them to take to it soon. Give them at least 6 weeks to settle into the neighbourhood and school.