The first day of school can be hard enough as it is. But the first day of school in a brand new environment? Well, that’s a recipe for a stressed-out, anxious child.
Yes, studies show that you’re not the only one nervous about the upcoming move. Moving schools can be tough on kids, too.
Make the process easier for yourself and your kids by following our quick, easy to read guide on changing schools!
Listen to Your Child’s Feelings
Moving is never easy, but it’s especially difficult for children.
In some cases, your current home may be the only home your child has ever known. It’s where their entire life is, and now that comfort and security is about to get upended by a move as they say goodbye.
While you can’t take away all of your kids’ frustrations and anguishes, you can help them work through their feelings by opening a dialogue.
As you pack together and get ready for the move, ask your little ones how they’re feeling. Here are a few conversation starters to help:
- What are you most nervous about?
- Are you excited to explore a whole new area?
- What are you most looking forward to?
- How can I make this move easier for you?
These ice breakers not only serve as a great jumping-off point but help paint the move in a positive light while still acknowledging your child’s feelings.
Research the School Together
Treating the transition to a new school as an adventure may not make the adjustment painless, but it can take away some of the sting all the same.
Before their first day, spend an afternoon learning about the school. You can research it online, or if you are close to the school, have a picnic at the school’s playground.
Encourage Social Activities
School is a great place to learn — but not all of that learning comes from books or classwork. Socialization plays a significant role in childhood development.
Making friends gives kids an increased sense of self-confidence, helps them feel safe, and serves as an excellent way for them to learn about the world around them.
Talk to your children about how exciting it is that they’ll get to make all sorts of new friends and encourage playdates and extracurricular activities.
Finally, don’t expect an overnight change in behavior. The frustration and nervousness that comes with a move won’t necessarily disappear quickly.
It’s going to take time for your children to adjust to their new environment.
Be patient with them and let them know that you’re there for them through thick and thin. Your love is the most essential part of the adjustment process.
How to Help Your Child Adjust When Moving Schools
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already stressed about an upcoming move. That stress is likely even greater if you’re worried about your child moving schools and adjusting.
The best thing you can do is to give your child time, attention, and love.