Moving can be stressful for children and the changes can be overwhelming, but there are ways to make it easier on them.
It’s important to inform your kids about the family’s plans to move as soon as you can. The more time they have to prepare, the easier it will be for them, say child psychologists who suggest that children should participate in the decision-making process. If kids feel included and take ownership of their new home decision, the transition will go much easier.
Moving is a family process so share the excitement and responsibilities with every member of the family. Give everyone an age-appropriate job duty. Kids will enjoy decorating their moving boxes, and when you are in your new home, it will be easier for them to find their stuff.
Throughout the move, stay as upbeat and calm as possible. Give you child a chance to express their feelings and try to be honest about your own feelings. Most children will feel some anger, sadness or may worry about the move. Reassure them they aren’t alone and it’s okay to have these feelings.
Also be sure to involve your kids in the packing process and start packing items you will not need ahead of time. Sentimental items your children treasure such as special blankets, beloved stuffed animals and photo albums should be kept in a separate bag or box which they can keep close until moving day, and then bring with them to your new home.
Plan a date to tour your new neighbourhood with your family. If it’s not a long distance, ride your bikes and scope out your child’s favourite activities and even restaurant locations, sports fields, playgrounds, etc.
You can also check with the local school PTA to determine if there is a Welcome Wagon program for kids, arrange a tour of their new school and meet the teachers ahead of moving day.