Useful Things That Can Help Children Understand Moving House
A study published in the Child Development Journal revealed that almost 3,000 families in the US moved house recently with children who were not yet of school age, and these children were far more likely to suffer later from attention problems, anxiousness and hyperactivity.
Moving house can be a daunting experience for even us adults, but for some children this time of uncertainty can be too much to handle. So even if you don’t move regularly but have moved, or are planning a move, it’s a good idea to help your children understand the whole process as early on as possible. This way, they can settle in quicker, and hopefully the whole transition period will be much smoother and stress-free for everyone involved.
However, it can be difficult to know where to start, as you don’t want to put too much on your child and cause them more worry and stress. So, we’ve come up with some useful ideas for things you can try doing with your children to prepare them for the move.
Reading is a great way to help prepare children for any changes that are about to happen in their lives. So try buying children’s books about moving house and sitting down to read them together a few weeks before the move. This can be a very effective way to help talk them through what will happen and also gives them the opportunity to discuss with you any concerns they may have in these early stages, and you can reassure them that there is nothing to worry about.
Visiting the area
Spend the day in the new area you will be moving to and make it fun day out for everyone! Go to the local park, have a picnic and play some games, or go out for lunch, to the cinema or to the local leisure centre. This will familiarise them with their new environment so it won’t be as daunting as seeing it for the first time on moving day.
If you’re moving out of the area to a whole new location, then this can be even more unnerving for the child. They will be moving school, leaving friends and possibly family behind, so it’s important to let them say a proper goodbye to people and the place.
Help your child take photographs and make a scrap book, include contact details of their friends so they can keep in touch. You could even consider throwing a leaving party so they can all enjoy themselves together and have some great memories.
Encourage them to talk about the move. Try and get them to open up about how they feel, what they’re thinking, if there is anything in particular they are worrying about etc. then reassure them that everything will be okay. Try and put a positive spin on any concerns they may have and remind them of the advantages and why you are moving.
Once you have moved house, encourage them to continue to talk about it, as there may be things that have changed and new worries or anxieties that they now have; for instance, making friends at their new school.
Help them pack up their own things and include them in conversations about the move. Don’t feel like you have to wait until they aren’t in the room before you can talk about it, as the more you can include them, the more they will feel they are part of the whole process.
Make sure your child’s toys are the last thing to be packed into the removals van. This way, they can be the first thing to be unloaded when you arrive at your new house, so your child can settle down and play with their toys, rather than being bored which could lead to misbehaving.
Don’t rush into unpacking everything as soon as you arrive. Instead, make your child his or her favourite meal and all sit down as a family and watch a film together. This will help them feel more settled and at home with you there by their side.
Why not try some of our useful tips to help your children understand moving house, so you can all experience this change in your life together and be supportive of one another, helping you all to settle in and enjoy your new home as a family.
If you would like any further information about Britannia Sandersteads’ professional house removal services, please feel free to get in touch with us today and our team will be more than happy to help.