Moving into your first home is an exciting time for grown-ups, but it may be less so for your kids. While some kids embrace change readily, others may need extra time and convincing to get on board. Here are some tips that can ease the transition and get your whole household excited about their new home.
No one wants to leave their friends behind; this can be especially stressful for elementary school kids. Strategize feasible ways they can stay in touch, whether it’s through visits, joining the same clubs or by using technology. Knowing this isn’t “goodbye forever” may make moving a little easier for some kids.
Know where you’re headed? If you’ve got a long closing date or are firm on the community you’ll be buying in, you can start the transition early. Sign your kids up for fun extracurricular activities to help familiarize them with their future ’hood. From Scouts to swimming, book clubs to cooking lessons, there’s something for everyone, and plenty of new kids to meet, too.
SELL THE SPACE
Get your kids excited about the move by actively involving them in transforming your new place from house to home. Depending on their age, they could help design their bedroom (i.e., select paint colours, furniture layout and so on) or even shared spaces like the family room or backyard.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Once you know what school your children will be enrolled in, consider requesting a tour before their first day. Or contact their homeroom teacher to ask if they can be partnered with a buddy who will show them around for the first few days. Find out what clubs and teams the school offers and encourage your child to get involved.
From Skype and Snapchat to text messages and phone calls, technology makes it easy for kids to stay in touch with their old friends – and get to know new ones, too. Gamers can even join one another to face off online in real time (a great option for kids who are not big talkers). Allow your kids to use their screen time to maintain their friendships while safely making new ones.
CONSIDER A SUMMER REUNION
If your new home is too far away for your kids to have regular meet-ups with their old friends, consider sleepover summer camp. Besides the super-fun setting, summer camp is designed around semi-structured days; the programming can distract kids from any initial awkwardness as they reconnect after months apart.
SUPPORT ONE ANOTHER
Finally, if you’re moving with a spouse or partner, emphasize co-operation and teamwork. Avoid arguing over move-related issues like budgeting, logistics and job changes. Kids pick up on parental stress and it may influence their feelings about the move. Take a “we’re in this together” approach and focus on problem solving. Stay positive and keep everyone’s eye on the prize: home, sweet family home!
Article taken from Genworth website homeownership.ca to view it in its original form please visit http://homeownership.ca/closing-moving-in/moving/helping-kids-through-a-move/
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Mark A Douglas
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