Starting a new school can be challenging for kids, especially when it’s happening because of a household relocation. As a parent, you can help your child adjust to a new school by communicating with your child and their teacher, facilitating friendships, and offering assistance to your child as they need it. The following suggestions can help.
1. Communicate With the Teacher
Introduce yourself to the teacher on the first day of school. Maintaining open lines of communication with your child’s teacher will help you gather information about how your child is doing in school. Are they struggling? Are they making friends? How’s their behavior and attitude? This information will help you gauge how your child feels about their new school and what you can do to help.
2. Ask About Their Day
Of course, your child’s teacher shouldn’t be the only source of information about how your child is doing. Your child should be able to tell you about their days and impressions of their new school. Ask your child about their day to learn how they feel about their new school.
3. Offer to Help With Homework
If your child moved schools in the middle of the school year, they may need extra support on homework. Talk to your child about their lessons and ask them how they feel about their understanding of the lessons. If your child needs extra help, they may also need a tutor.
Listen to what your child has to say. Sometimes, just having someone to talk to about their day can make someone feel better. Show your child that you are a listening ear, and avoid the temptation to give advice or tell them what to do unless they specifically ask.
5. Read Books Together
Remind your child that learning is fun. Spend time reading books together – either school books or books from around the house. Reading together is an excellent way to strengthen your bond and also a good way to help your child become more adept at a vital skill used in school. Have your child read to you and then read to them. Taking turns is fun and beneficial for you both.
6. Spend Quality Time On Weekends
Very likely, your child will need a break when the weekend comes. Take time together to explore your new community and bonding over old favorite activities. Spending quality time together will help your child take their mind off of school while also helping them feel closer to you. Spending quality time on weekends also can help alleviate any tension your child may feel about their new home.
7. Facilitate Friendships
Your child probably misses their old friends, but you can help them make new ones. If your child is very young, seek opportunities to arrange play dates with other kids in your community. There may be parent groups for this that you can find on social media.
If your child is older, you can facilitate a friendship by listening to your child talk about children they enjoy spending time with at school. Offer to take them and these new classmates to a park, museum, or somewhere around town.
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