Moving With Kids!

*Ages 6-12

Kids under the age of six may worry about being left behind or being separated from their parents. If you go on an orientation or house-hunting trip beforehand without the children, it’s very important to reassure kids this age that you will be back; bring something unique about the new area back to them. It’s very important for them to express their feelings and fears about the move. Give them a job to do. Have them be responsible for boxing up their favorite toys, and “labeling” their boxes with crayons and stickers.

If they take karate, or play soccer, even if their favorite thing to do is go to the park or the pizza parlor, find these places in your news neighborhood and get photos, brochures, or videos. These kids are most concerned with fitting in. They may react angrily to the move, even insist they are not going. This is usually due to the total lack of control they have over everything important in their lives, friends, school and jobs, being disrupted.

These children can be very worried about making new friends and what will be different in the new school. They are curious about the clothing, hair- styles, bicycles, cars, etc., that kids in the new city will have. Photos of these things are very helpful, and including them on an orientation trip is nice, but if not, do visit the school and take detailed photos/videos for them. Perhaps the principal could arrange a pen pal with someone who might match up well.
Other tips
  • Give young children an entertaining travel kit for the move.
  • Give older children a diary for recording the trip and move.
  • Arrange a going away and remembering you party for your older children and their friends, with pre-addressed envelopes for your children to give out, and invitations for their friends to visit.
  • Give children of all agents a special address book and stationery set for keeping up with friends.
  • Take videos of the new home, if the kids won’t get to see it before the move. Arrive well before the movers so kids can explore and become acquainted with the home before the movers take all your attention.
  • Give each child a responsibility during the mover’s delivery, working on their room, supervising younger siblings, painting or arranging furniture, preparing meals and/or doing some kitchen organization, taking care of the dog and/or cat in the back yard in or out of his/her travel cage.
  • Take time with the family as soon as possible to explore the museums, sights and recreation in your new city.
  • Plan time with your children immediately after their first day at school to meet new needs they have realized.
  • Arrange a visit to new schools and a meeting with the teacher before the actual first day of attendance.
Encourage the children to bring new friends home. Perhaps a welcome party instead of birthday, where all the children would get little presents, In a swap kind of thing.