Moving is a big event for a family. And the transition can be a challenge, especially for young kids. To help ease the process, make relocation a positive growth experience for every member of the family, especially for the children. Here are some tips to ease your kids’ relocation experience.
Discuss the relocation with your kids as soon as possible. It is very important to be honest about why the relocation is necessary. Then talk as a family about all the positives of the new house, new location, and new community. Learn together as a family everything about your new neighborhood, town, and city by reading, looking at photographs, visiting websites, watching documentaries, and tuning in to travel videos. Make the experience an adventure.
If the idea of a new school seems to be met with trepidation, consider having your kids transition into your new home community by attending an online school rather than a brick-and-mortar school. There are many wonderful accredited online schools (for kindergarteners, elementary school kids, middle school tweens, and high school teens) that span our entire nation. Examples include K12.com and Compass Charter Schools. Additionally, attending an online school can minimize family expenses by reducing commute times and excess expenditures for new kids’ fashion.
Have a farewell party for closure. Have your kids say their farewells properly — and gather all their friends’ contact information so they can still keep in touch, especially during holidays. Create a memory book, album, and/or scrapbook with many keepsakes exchanged between your kids and the people they will miss.
Revisit all your family’s favorite spots in your old neighborhood and town or city. Honoring these places is very important for your child. Take videos and pictures to document that hot spot.
Coordinate moving day. Unpack your children’s boxes and decorate their rooms first so that they will be surrounded by familiar personal belongings from the start in your new home. Also, have your kids provide their input and feedback when decorating your new home.
Celebrate your arrival into your new home and the first day and night there with a type of “remembrance party” to break the ice and begin having a fun family experience in your new place. While it’s cructial to still maintain the family’s routines of meal times and bed times, it is also important to start having good memories in your new home by celebrating during that first day and night of being there. It is, after all, a milestone that will be appreciated in the future.
Begin finding favorite spots in your new neighborhood, town, and/or city. Just like it is necessary to honor all the old favorite spots in your old neighborhood, old town, and old city, so, too, is it similarly significant to start having new favorite places in your new community. Besides, this promotes faster integration and assimilation into the new area you have relocated to. Explore together as a family and make new memories as a family as well because this builds positivity. Moreover, consider, finding new hobbies for everyone to partake in at your new neighborhood, town, and/or city. If your children are sporty, find adrenaline-conducive activities to do. If your children are adventurous, visit all the attractions and “tourist-draws” in your new community. And always remember to share laughter with your children as you learn about the new things and new sights surrounding your new home.