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Navigating Transitions | 10 Expert Tips for Kids and Parents

By JJ Wu, Early Childhood Counselor at SCIS Hongqiao

As we are near the end of the school year, it is time for many of us to prepare for different transitions, whether for parents or children. Here are 10 tips for supporting children through a transition to a new grade level, a new school, and even a new country.


1. Open communication: Encourage open discussions about the upcoming transition. Listen to their concerns and validate their feelings.

2. Recognize your emotions: Give yourself the time to cope and adjust at your own pace and understand that how you feel about the transition might not be the same as how your child feels about the transition.


3. Take your time: Say your goodbyes, this applies to people you and your child would want to say goodbye to but also places. Make sure to start planning goodbye events ahead of time so that this process doesn’t feel rushed.

4. Visit the new school or country: Before the move, if possible, visit the new school or country with your child or try your best to schedule a video call. Familiarizing them with the environment can ease anxiety and make the transition smoother.


5. Maintain routines: Stick to familiar routines as much as possible during the transition period to provide stability and predictability.

6. Positive outlook: Model a positive attitude about the transition to instill confidence in your child. Highlight the exciting opportunities and adventures that await in the new school or country.


7. Connect with others: Help your child make connections by arranging playdates, joining community groups, or participating in school orientation programs to meet new friends and build a support network.

8. Stay involved: Stay actively involved in your child's transition process by attending orientation sessions, parent-teacher meetings, and school events to stay informed and engaged.

9. Be patient: Adjusting to a new school or country takes time. Be patient and supportive as your child navigates the changes and adapts to their new environment.

10. Maintain connections: Help your child stay connected with friends and family from their previous school or country through phone calls, video chats, or letters to provide a sense of continuity and support.


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