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Taking the kids..............

Taking the kids..............

Old Aug 22nd 2003, 3:30 pm
  #1  
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Default Taking the kids..............

I have my interview at the embassy next week - my employer wants me to start work as soon as possible after I get my visa. Of course I have been busying myself with getting things organised in order for us to be able to move.

My one recurring guilty feeling is taking my son (9) away from all things familiar to him. He has a good relationship with his grandparents and I know they will miss him very much. Ben is really excited at the prospect of moving and is very objective in many ways - he knows he will see them when either we or they visit and is happy with that. We discussed this move at length - we do know a few people in the town where we will live and Ben does have a couple of friends.

How do people's experiences with moving children compare? Do they settle in fairly quickly and adapt well? I would appreciate ANY advice on this because at times this really is bothering me.

Thanks for your help!!!!

Last edited by cathy22w; Aug 22nd 2003 at 10:24 pm.
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Old Aug 23rd 2003, 6:02 pm
  #2  
ScarlettHill
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Default Re: Taking the kids..............

Originally posted by cathy22w
I have my interview at the embassy next week - my employer wants me to start work as soon as possible after I get my visa. Of course I have been busying myself with getting things organised in order for us to be able to move.

My one recurring guilty feeling is taking my son (9) away from all things familiar to him. He has a good relationship with his grandparents and I know they will miss him very much. Ben is really excited at the prospect of moving and is very objective in many ways - he knows he will see them when either we or they visit and is happy with that. We discussed this move at length - we do know a few people in the town where we will live and Ben does have a couple of friends.

How do people's experiences with moving children compare? Do they settle in fairly quickly and adapt well? I would appreciate ANY advice on this because at times this really is bothering me.

Thanks for your help!!!!
Mine, 7 and 8 (6 and 8 when we moved) have adapted really well. A lot depends (I think) on how much prep you do. We had researched schools and made sure we got an apartment in the area that was in the catchment area for the best school in the district. Living in an apartment also means there are other kids close by.

We talked A LOT and we did everything we could to get them with other kids over here fast. We timed the move for mid December and didn't put them in school till they started up again after Christmas. But we visited the school while it was still open in December so the kids could meet their teachers, classmates etc.

Little things are a big deal to kids. Here you have to buy all your kids' school supplies - from pens to paper to crayons, rulers etc. This year's little lot for two kids cost us $150. Schools usually have a specific supply list for whatever grade the child will be in. So get it in advance and make sure your kid has everything the other kids have on the first day of school. They all have such a lot of stuff that they carry backbacks or pull-along small luggage. Visiiting the school or hanging around at chucking out time will give you an idea what the other kids have, how they dress etc. Sounds trivial, maybe, but to a kid, having the same stuff as the others will make them feel less like they're sticking out like a sore thumb.

Teach him the pledge of allegiance before school starts. We made a joke of saying it before breakfast every morning till the kids had it drummed in. They will have to recite it every morning at school and may get laughed at if they don't know it. Here in Texas you have to say the US pledge and then the Texas pledge.

Talk about cultural differences and things they can expect to be different. Explain that a lot of Americans are very proud of their country. Save your cynical/humorous comments about the US for when your kid is not around because it won't do them any favours in the playground if they make fun of America. Remember they'll suddenly be a minority.

Most school districts have a webpage that tells you about the school, any dress code, holidays etc.

Consider changing bedtimes. All the differences and new impressions can make your kid extra tired so you might want to tuck them in earlier for a bit. They'll cope better stuff if they're better rested.

Get a US jigsaw. Most kids your son's age will have learned where all the states are and what their capitals are. Though a teacher will make allowances for your kid being an alien, kids are not always as kind.

There is a fantastic double dvd set you can get that does a lot of stuff they might need to know in a fun-to-watch format. We found it invaluable. It's called School House Rock. ISBN 0-7888-2925-4. Well worth getting. It's a collection of TV shows - cartoon-format - that does everything from multiplication tables (my 8-year-old had to know all the tables up to x12 last year) plus stuff about the constitution and American history. Sounds dull but it's anything but. Kids here do social studies and it's all very American. I'm not saying cram your kid, but anything you can use to prepare them while making it fun is going to take away some of the strain.

Be prepared kids here do longer days - 8-3 - and get much more homework. They sometimes do things differently - like the way they carry numbers in math probles and this can be confusing.

I know all these sound like little things but they become huge in your kid's mind.

I think this is a huge issue that is not talked about often enough. Kids are often treated like appendages that just have to tag along and make out the best way they can. But if your kids are happy that's half the battle.

Wishing you all the best and please shout if I can be of any more help.

My email is [email protected].

Regards
-=-
Scarlett
 

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