You may have seen on some of my Instagram Stories that we took the decision, after a few months of being in our new house, to move the kiddies to a new school. It is not a decision we made lightly as Isla loved her school and was attached to her teacher. We didn’t want to disrupt them unnecessarily but we feel that this move will do them good. And, the new uniform looks SUPER cute!
Here are a few tips that we picked up along our journey , that may be helpful to anyone else who is considering moving their children to a different school…
Timing is key
When do you want the kids to start the new school? It made sense for us to wait until the September as then both kids could start the school together. It also felt like a clean break from one school, Summer Holiday sandwiched in-between and then the new school starts. The new chapter. The kids were happy with this, after Isla’s initial upset.
Discuss with the kids
You need to make sure you are SURE before you tell the kids. Break the news just before a settling in session. Isla’s teacher told us to hold fire on telling Isla until the weekend before her settling in session – which was quite late in the term. Later than we had planned. But it did help. She didn’t have a lot of time to dwell on it and her teacher really helped with the transition. She loved her teacher and it made me sad, because Isla didn’t understand that even if she stayed in that school she wouldn’t have that teacher anymore.
When we did tell the kids, it was a mixed reaction. Noah fist pumped the air as he had been asking to move all year. His friends all moved up to this school the previous September. So he was happy. Whereas little Isla cried her eyes out for hours, repeating “I don’t want to move schools”. Those settling in sessions really helped though, she knew people and it wasn’t so scary. Phew.
We insisted (and did a lot of late planning) that the kiddies have a group of friends over on a play date at the end of their last term. We wanted them to make sure they had fun and had nice, happy, memories to remember their friends with. It was great fun for the kids and I think it helped, it gave them something to look forward to at the end of term too. Instead of dreading it!
We are lucky as where we have moved to and where the kiddies clubs are located – they know a lot of people who go to this school. Isla was petrified when we told her – but she soon calmed down when she realised she knew at least 10 girls in her new year. A few of them in her class too. It must be so daunting to go to a new school when you have a good unit of friends at the old one. I hope they make new friends and quickly. They seem to know a lot of children so that’s good.
So, thats the kids but if I am honest I am super nervous myself. It’s another playground that I have to get used to. Socialise with parents and establish my own place – let alone the kiddies. I found it hard in our previous school as all the parents seemed to have known each other from nursery and we came in at Reception. Or they had older siblings at that school, so everyone was familiar. Whereas we had to build friendships from scratch. I didn’t actually make friends, properly, until Noah was in Year 2 – so that was 3 years! It is daunting stuff. I am a people watcher though, so the playground is a feast for my eyes most days. (Did I just say that out loud? :)).
Back to school
This may sound crazy but that Back to School haul has really helped. We got the kids ready in their new uniforms and shoes, then revealed their new lunchboxes and stationery. It really helped with their anxieties. Isla went from nervous to mega excited and even wrote “I love school” on her notepad. I was amazed at the power of Paperchase! All of this back to school stationery is on their website and amazing.
#Gifted – we were sent this amazing bundle from Paperchase, as a surprise for Back to School.
Kim CarberrySeptember 4, 2019
My youngest has started in a new school today, year 8. Eek!
We timed it right too. We moved house at the end of June and which meant a fresh start in September.
My girls know nobody here so it’s all been new. My teen started college so everyone was in the same boat but I am worried about my youngest as all the friendship groups will already be made!
I thankfully don’t have to worry about being in the playground. Hooray!
Good luck to your children x
Yvonne WilkinsonFebruary 8, 2020
This is always a difficult change for children and must be handled carefully. But it is difficult for mums too as they can lose their support system from the mums at the school gate
Rebecca RobertsFebruary 9, 2020
Great blog I always worry about school and making friends etc