Starting school in a new neighborhood can cause anxiety and stress for your kids, whether it is because of a move to a new home or because they are transitioning from elementary to middle school. These five tips can help you and your children make this transition smoothly.
- Keep a positive attitude, but be ready for some road bumps. Transitions can be stressful. Read books about school or first-day experiences so your kids know what to expect. Remind them of other new things they’ve experienced and what was fun or interesting, as well as what challenges they were able to overcome. This will give them confidence and help them stay positive, too.
- Take a team approach. Include your kids in the process, from meeting their teachers and attending orientation to driving their morning route to school before their first day. Point out landmarks, so they’ll know they’re going the right way.
- Follow routine. Consistency can reduce a lot of stress and fear, particularly during a major change like a move to a new school. Establish and stick to bedtime and morning schedules and offer what predictability you can.
- Help them make friends before school starts, so they’ll see familiar faces in the classroom. Enroll your kids in a sports league, spend time at the park and pool, or participate in storytime at your local library. You can also facilitate your children’s staying connected to old friends through email, snail mail, or phone calls so they don’t feel alone. Involvement extends to parents as well — get involved through the PTA or volunteer in the community. It’s important for both parents and children to make connections in the community.
- Make a healthy start each day. Prepare as much as you can the evening before. Have your children help select their clothes for the next day as well as what they’ll want for breakfast and lunch. Pack their backpacks with them, and follow a bedtime routine. All of this preparation will make for a smooth, quick morning.
Don’t let the fear of a new school discourage you from purchasing a home in a new area. Check out our available homes sprinkled in the best locations in Austin!