Preparing Your Kids for a New Place

Get nervous and anxious in a new environment are normals. To reduce it you might need to provide some psychological preparation for your kids. In experience with my children, and in consultation with a child psychologist (candidate), teh Feti, here I summarized some of the key things.

Get them involve in the decision making process
We explain the available options, including the option to stay in Indonesia without me, or with me which means I am not continue the masters study, or join me in NZ. We could also explain the strengths and weaknesses if we go or not go to NZ. When they involved in the decision making process, they will understand and try to be ready for the consequences.

Describe further about their decision
Before the departure, introduce them about the place we will visit. How is the situation, its people, its culture, and other information related to the place. This introduction might help children to illustrate what it is going to be in a new place and they will try to prepare themselves for it.

Support them 24/7, mentally and physically
On arrival, give them space to observe the new place while we standby to answer their enquiries during the observation. Every child might have different coping strategies. They might also differ in terms of adaptation times, sometimes they require longer time to adapt, sometimes shorter. Don't push your children too hard and let them go through the adaptation process while we assist them. We should also maintain contact with the school to see if there is anything we could do to help our children enjoy their school more.

Preschool kid
Luckily most NZ public library provides a corner for kids. We could bring our kids there to read children books, and play with other kids who also visit the library. In 3 years of age, we got 20 hours of early childhood education for free every week. The challenge would be that many early childhood centres are fully booked, and we could be in a very long waiting list. One of the tips would be to visit the centre regularly to check if there is any spot available for our kids.