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How to Move: Moving with Small Children

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By : T. Scott Clendaniel    99 or more times read
Moving is stressful on all the members of the family. It may be most stressful in the short term on the youngest members. Because small children thrive on consistency of environment and routine, this can be scary for them. Here are some ideas to make it less upsetting:

  1. Talking to your kids about the upcoming move on a regular basis, including what the new place will be look, and what they should expect. Trying to keep the move a secret is almost never a good idea.

  2. Reassure your children, and take their fears and concerns seriously. Kids will pick up quickly on the fact that everyone is feeling the stress of the upcoming move. Be honest in letting kids know that things will be a bit stressful and "up in the air" for a short period of time, but that things will settle down and feel normal again after the move. Remind them of things that won't be changing, whether that involves possessions, daily routines, family members, pets, etc.

  3. Try to let kids participate in age-appropriate responsibilities prior to Moving Day, whether that's labeling boxes, packing their own toys or stuffed animals, organizing their belongings, etc.

  4. Read a children's book on moving for smaller kids on a daily basis for a few weeks prior to the move. Consider “The Berenstain Bears’ Moving Day.”

  5. If appropriate, let children pick their room in the place. This often isn't practical, but when it is, it allows kids to help "buy into" the move.

  6. Let children select a decoration (poster, light switch, name banner, etc.) for their new room. If that isn't possible, let them pick from two or three different paint colors that you pick out so that they "get a vote."

  7. Pack a kid's sized suitcase and let each child pick out a special toy to keep with them and a special outfit to wear on "new home day."

  8. If the child has a special dish or cup, include it in the kitchen "Open Me First" box so familiar items await them at their new place.

  9. Consider unpacking the kids' rooms first, or at least their "Open Me First" boxes to help them settle in.

Following these basic tips can go along way to minimizing the moving stress on your youngest ones.
You may also be interested in: Moving sale secrets.

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