Something to consider when moving with kids is how you can help them to adjust to their new school…
Have you recently moved or are planning to move and wondering how you can help your kids to adjust to their new school? As you can imagine, starting a new school can be difficult. So I thought I would share some suggestions for ways that you can help children adjust to a new school.
Check out these tips for helping kids adapt to a new school:
Help Kids Understand Why You Moved
Whether you’re across the county or to the other side of town, give your children as much notice as possible. Explain to them why you are moving. This will give them time to say goodbye to friends and start to deal with the coming changes.
Your child is going to be nervous and this is normal. Moving and adjusting to a new school can be difficult for many children. They may have lots of questions about their new school. You need to answer these questions and listen to their concerns.
Prepare For the First Day at the New School
Register your child before the first day of class! Make sure the new school has received your child’s health and school records.
If time allows, show your child the new school. See if you can arrange for your child to meet their new teachers and staff. This can help your child prepare for the change. If you can find out what classroom your child will be in, visit it so they know exactly where to go on the first morning.
Be sure to check with the school for basic information:
- What time school starts and ends
- What school supplies you need
- How lunch works
- The location of the cafeteria, bathrooms, gym and auditorium
- Dress code requirements
- How the buses work
If you do this, it can help to reduce the child’s anxiety about their new school.
Positive Thoughts and Attitudes
A new school and moving to a new home is a chance to start over, make new friends and learn new things. But for a child, it can also be a scary time.
It is normal for a child to feel anxious or scared after moving. If you are confident, your kids will pick up on this. Listen to your child’s concerns and reassure them. Be enthusiastic about the move and the new school. Help them understand that this is an exciting opportunity!
Remind your child about other “firsts” they’ve encountered in their lives and how well they handled them. Explain that new things can be positive experiences. Share with your child how you dealt with some “firsts” that you have experienced.
Accompanying a younger child for the first day of school can also be a good idea. You will need to check with the school in advance to make sure this is OK. I would not mention it to your kid until AFTER you find out it is OK with the school and your schedule will allow it.
Consider joining the PTA or volunteering at the school so you can learn about what’s happening in the school. Your child will realize their school is important to you if you are involved. This can help your child to adjust.
Encourage your child to become involved in school activities, sports, or after-school clubs/activities. You don’t want your child to become overwhelmed but you can encourage them to participate in stuff that interests them.
While your child’s schoolwork is important, so is their happiness and well being. Plus, this gives them more chances to make friends. The sooner they make friends, the more settled they’ll feel.
You may need to start a school year routine several weeks before school starts. It is a good idea to have your child adjust to the school year sleep pattern several weeks in advance.
It’s best to keep a consistent routine at home. This will help children know what to expect and feel they have some control.
The Take Away:
Moving to a new school can be tough on your children.
But with your help, it does NOT have to be.
You may have noticed I have mentioned talking and listening several times. This is going to be a huge part of helping your child adjust to their new school.
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