If you ventured out into the fray over tax-free weekend, it is likely you encountered a variety of parents and students overflowing store aisles with school supply lists in hand. The chaotic mixture of excitement, worries, thrills and nerves that could be felt from the masses last weekend more than likely stayed with many of the kids starting school this week. Multiply those emotional levels by 10 and you can imagine how a child may feel who is starting a new school, after just moving to a new home/community.
August is back to school time in the state of Georgia, with several counties already back in session this past Monday, August 3rd. For those families who are planning to move or have recently moved to our lovely state (or any place for that matter), RNR Moving would like to offer a few tips to help ease your child’s new school blues:
- Be Positive! Find a way to reassure your child about their new school. Search the web for fun facts, photographs, videos and other information to show your child. If you know of a particular activity, club or sport your child is interested in, find out if the new school offers something to fit their interests and talk it up. Let your enthusiasm be infectious to your child! Find something your child loves and get your kid hooked! Of course, there are always kids who claim to ‘hate’ school, end of story. Rhona M. Gordon, M.S., SLP/CCC, author of Thinking Organized for Parents and Children states, “I have never met a student who does not want to succeed in school. Many kids just don’t know how to accomplish it.” So be your child’s positive guide and remain unshakable in showing your confidence of how good this new school will be; it may help ease some inner anxiety for you and your child.
- Make a Routine. As a parent, you probably know that routines and school go hand in hand. However, when your family is in a new community where everything’s different, routines are even more important.
- For example, if your little one will be riding with you to and from school, go ahead and practice the ‘school route’ a few times to get them used to the drive and the area. Young children often take in more of their surroundings than we give them credit for, especially in the car; so be sure to point out nice or interesting markers along the way, like a pretty building, bright sign, etc. Even your driving teenager may need to drive to school a few times before they feel comfortable finding their way alone (though they’d probably never admit to getting lost).
- Ask your child’s new school for permission to do a walk through of the school when it is not in session if you missed orientation day or are starting school after it has already been in session. Some administrators may allow you and your child to do a walk through on a ‘planning day’ or ‘teacher work day.’ It may also be possible to do after school before the main office closes. Most administrators are happy to help!
- Know Your Child. Is your child pretty laid back? Or do you have an anxious child? The answer to this question is important to helping your kid cope with a move AND a new school, because you know your child best! If you have an anxious child, you may have to put in greater effort in making them feel comfortable going to a new school; however, other children may adapt rather quickly. Have a conversation with your child, even if they’re in kindergarten, and ask them how they are feeling. Knowing you care and are there to listen and help them can have a HUGE impact on their psyche.
- Socializing in the Community. Take your child around your new community so they can become familiar with the area (a local landmark may be a huge topic for kids at school). Also, go to a local park, library or other space that is likely to have children of the same age group and encourage your child to interact. Chances are good that someone your child meets will go to their school, and any familiar faces on the first day of school count, even if they are in different classes or grades. This is true with teachers as well. If you and your child have the chance to meet the new teacher before the first of school, try to do it! Even the briefest encounter with the new teacher can help your kid feel better when they go back to school without you.
- Be Patient. Many psychologists agree that the first six weeks of a new school may be tough. However, much of this does relate to how adaptable your child is; so for some it could be a smooth transition right away and for others it may take a few weeks. Try to be patient with your child during this transition. Usually everything ends up just fine, but if they do struggle longer than you believe is healthy, school counselors can be a great resource.
RNR Moving is a family-owned, full service moving company with years of experience. We offer packing services, specialty item moves (safes, pianos, etc.) local and long distance moves for residential and commercial customers. Please contact us today for your FREE local movequote and schedule your move with Atlanta’s most reliable movers!