Helping Kids Adjust to a Move
New schools, new friends, a new neighborhood . . . moving is fun and exciting—but it can be stressful too. Here are some ideas to help your kids:
- Maintain family routines. Kids will appreciate the continuity of family life.
- Involve the kids. Allow them to select new furnishings or decorate their rooms.
- Take kids to the local playground, pool, or community center. If you move during the summer, it’s likely they’ll make friends there, which should ease the transition to the new school.
- Call the school where your children will be enrolled and make an appointment with the principal for you and your kids to visit. Plan your visit when school is in session so you can get a feel for the school’s “personality.” Is there artwork on the walls? Do teachers and students seem friendly and welcoming? What kinds of projects are students working on? Be sure to notice what other students are wearing. Your “new” kids will want to fit in with style of dress. Most importantly, be sure to talk to your kids during and after the tour. They will probably notice things you don’t and it will help them adapt when they start classes.
- Investigate what extracurricular programs are available. Girl/Boy scouts, sports, dance and music lessons . . . all are great ways for kids to pursue their special interests and to meet new friends too.
- Encourage kids to keep in touch with family members and friends and to tell them about their new home. Older kids often enjoy a move-related project, like taking photos of the new home or creating a special “new address” mailing for family and friends.
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