Changing schools and locations can make children anxious, lonely, and fearful. Caregivers might wonder how to make this transition easier for their family, and there are some great tips on helping your children feel confident and calm about this upcoming change!
1) Talk to them about what they’re going to miss at their old school. Instead of trying to “make it better” right away, let them get it all out. Listen. Acknowledge what they’re saying and validate them, “Yes, it can be scary having to make new friends.” Practice empathy with them.
2) Buy them a journal. Have them draw pictures or write words about this experience from start to finish. If they aren’t naturally inclined to writing or drawing, help them with prompts on the tops of pages. Some examples? “Draw your new school,” or “Write what qualities you’ll look for in your new friends.”
3) Read topical books together with your younger children. Here are some recommendations up through sixth grade: Best Moving Books
4) Get them involved in a sport or school-related club or activity as soon as possible. Socialization can be the toughest part of a move, and this will help them ease into a new circle of friends. Bonus? It helps you meet new people, too. I know you’re a little nervous too. We’re all nerds at heart, after all.
5) Spend time as a family as much as possible, even though the move might be stressful on you, too. Enjoy a movie night in your new home, go check out some local businesses and then rate them together, and spend extra time talking at the dinner table and bedtime. You could always go see what Pokemon you can catch in your new neighborhood as well! haha. Reassure your child that they are supported in this big transition. And you should know that soon you’ll all adjust and you’ll be just as attached to your new place as you were to the old one.
Thinking of you! You got this.