You have been looking for a new home to move to, to accommodate your ever-growing family. You have tried to find one in the same school district you were in so the kids wouldn’t have to change schools, but it just wasn’t feasible with the cost of housing in that area.
The kids are already complaining about having to change schools. You’re at your wit’s end with the move and you just don’t understand why the kids can’t be more helpful.
Moving to a new neighborhood with a new school can be tough on kids. Quite often kids will experience a lot of anxiety and fear when facing such a change.
They are worried about losing their old friends, how they will make new friends and just overall anxious about the unknown. There are several things you can do to make this move easier on them.
It is important that you take time to explain to the kids why the move was necessary. You should be sensitive to their feelings of sadness, fear and anger that they may be experiencing to not hurt their pride.
The last thing you want to do is brush them aside by saying something like, “Oh, Johnny you always worry about things and they turn out just fine,” or “Don’t worry Mary, you will make new friends.”
If you react like this you are not respecting your child’s fears and concerns you are devaluing their voice. Doing this will only make things worse. Make sure you ask your child how they feel about this new school and listen to their feelings.
Make sure the kids are enrolled in the new school. Take the children for a tour of the new school and let them get a look at where they will be going.
Make sure they meet their new teacher and if they will be in a specific classroom take them to that classroom. Most schools will let you come when their teacher is setting up their classroom so that you can meet them. Make sure they are aware of the times they will be attending school.
If they will be taking the bus make sure you know what time it will be picking them up and share this with them also.
The more you can share with the child the better prepared they will be. Some schools have a welcome buddy program where a student will meet you and be your child’s buddy through this process.
Make sure you ask if your child’s school has one, having your child meet a fellow student will be helpful. Kids worry how they look in front of their peers. This will be even more important going to a new school because they will want to fit in.
Take them shopping and let them pick out a new outfit. Make sure you let them pick out what they want, within reason. This will go a long way toward boosting their self-esteem and will result in them feeling more confident that day.
Share with your child how important it is to say introduce themselves to other students as well as their teachers. Practice with them so that they are comfortable with doing this.
Assure them that they don’t need to wait for other kids to approach them. As your child makes new friends help them maintain some of their special friends from their old school by setting up play dates on the weekend.
Make sure you get your child there on time the first day there is nothing more embarrassing that walking into class late when you are the new kid. It will probably be best if on the first day at the new school you can drive them.
This will enable them to get there a little bit early so they can find their locker if they have one, and if not, they will have time to introduce themselves to others.
Encourage your children to get involved in activities that are going on in school. Help your child to choose one or two activities to get involved in.
There are plenty of clubs and sports as well as band at most schools for your kids to get involved in. It wouldn’t hurt you to get involved in some of the volunteer programs they have for parents at the school too.