It can be tough enough to move to a new area and deal with all of the stresses that involves – updating driver’s license information, changing voter registration cards, learning new roadways – but for your children, relocating means they have to start all over again in school.
There are new pitfalls and friends that await them, but rest assured you can help them with the transition. Here are a few tips to make learning about their new school system much easier.
Work on it Together
If you have the chance to choose a school because you are on the border between two or your district offers specialty schools, make sure your child or children are a part of the decision making process.
This helps make them feel less like things are happening to them and more like some exciting new prospects lie ahead.
For older children, finding out what clubs and sports are available gives them a chance to do something they love and make new connections at the same time. They’ll end up being more engaged in their new school.
If you are able to visit the new school before the move, it’s a good idea to do so. You both can see what the school looks like, where the lockers are, where the classroom will be, and so on. It helps reduce the first day jitters of feeling completely lost.
You might even be able to meet with the new teacher, so your child will know at least one person on that very first day, and you can let the teacher know of any issues like food allergies or special needs your child has. If your child is younger you may want to consider going with them on their first day, just to provide that extra level of security.
Health is Always Important
One of the best ways to keep stress under control is to keep the body healthy. A proper night’s sleep is a great way to start, so the first day is tackled well rested and ready.
Keep in mind, trying to do this only the night before the first day of school won’t be the best way to set up a good habit. Roll out the new bedtime about two to three weeks before school starts whenever possible. This is true when summer vacation comes to an end, too.
On the first day of school, be sure to take the time to fix a good breakfast and a nutritious lunch for your children to take to class. Good nutrition and comforting foods help keep the body balanced.
If you are moving from a cold climate to a warm lake shore area, you will need to take your child shopping for the right clothing, and the reverse is of course also true.
The district should also be able to provide you with the necessary school supplies list so you can go shopping for all the pens and pencils and jump drives your child will need.
Even with all of the prep work you have done, there are a few more steps to take. First, set out your child’s clothes the night before and get the book bag ready to go. That way, the mad chaos of getting ready layered on top of the existing stress of the first day at a new school is not overwhelming. Make sure your alarms are set early enough to get up and going without rushing.
It definitely takes a bit of planning, something that can be tricky with all of the other hassles that go into moving to your new home, but it is possible to have a smooth transition to a new school. The more relaxed and prepared you are, the more your children will be also.