Video:How to Prepare Kids for Movingwith Ben Hess
Moving isn't only stressful for parents who have to do all the organizing and heavy lifting - kids also deal with a lot of change and adjustment. See a few tips that will keep the new move positive and exciting for your kids.See Transcript
Transcript:How to Prepare Kids for MovingHey there, Ben Hess for About.com Home. You've taken the plunge, you've made the big decision – you're moving – How do you prepare your kids for the process? I've got a few first hand tips and tricks to share with you.
Keep a Positive Moving AttitudeDespite the stressure you're under - that's right stress, pressure – you've got to put on that positive mental attitude / moving-is-fun kind of persona. Kids feed off of our energy and if we're nervous … or wearing that stressure front and center, the kids will too. Because you and I know, moving is a process which could take weeks or even months, depending on your circumstances. Getting the positive attitude about the move, especially early on in the process, is key.
Let Kids Pack Their RoomsNow, start by having the kids pack their own rooms, with appropriate parental guidance of course. Mine created three boxes – keep, charity, or pitch – this was a great way to weed out toys or clothes that had grown too small. We also invited friends over from the neighborhood for a help-me-pack-my-room kind of playdate. Why not? Make it a social event.
Include Kids in Decorating New RoomsHopefully, you've been able to include your kids in the new home search process. Even if not, have them set up their new rooms – you have them choose wall coverings or paint color of course - anything they can do to personalize the space and make it their own as they're getting acclimated to their new environment.
Make Saying Goodbye EasyThe biggest challenge you're kids will probably face is saying goodbye to old friends and the old neighborhood and getting acclimated to a new school and new friends. One thing you can do as a parent to help ease this transition is to set up playdates with the old friends. Keep those relationships alive, even for those first couple of months.
If the kids are old enough make sure you have appropriate contact information – instant messenger, email, cell phone. There's nothing like having your child share their first day at a new school stories via IM or cell with their old friends.
Adjust to New Schools and CommunitiesIn your new community, look into local sports or after-school programs through the city's Parks and Rec or YMCA or the Girls and Boys Club. These are great resources which you can take advantage of prior to your move if at all possible or once you've settled in.
If your kids are changing schools, try to arrange for a visit day or a shadow as its called here, at least for one day prior to the full-time attendance at the new school.
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