Migrating to another country is a huge leap towards change – most significantly when you have kids tagged along. You would never know what to expect, no matter how much research you take with you. Planning can help, but there will certainly be big adjustments and transitions along the way.
However, migration as a family should not be terrifying. But before you leave, you just need to make sure as parents that you and your kids are well prepared financially, mentally and emotionally for the whole transition – the trip and beyond. Set rules and limitations for both you and your kids. But don’t forget to still enjoy the whole process. For more peace of mind on this big change in your life, below are some small practical advices for school and family in terms of rearing your children abroad.
Keep Most of Family Traditions or Routines (or Create New Helpful Ones)
Children will always be the ones to have a hard time coping with the changes. In order to help them with this stage, identify and keep the most important family traditions or even your smallest yet most meaningful routines. These can be dinner time chats, Sunday lunches, weekend early morning picnics, movie nights, Christmas gathering, going to church and a lot more. You can also create new and meaningful traditions and routines that can somewhat aid on their probable homesickness. Although some of the places and faces around have changed, what matters most is the comfort that these can bring for them and even for the whole family.
Converse Using Your ‘Native Tongue’ at Home
To help shape your children’s knowledge on your culture and also teach them to respect other cultures, start with having them embrace your own native language through using it frequently at home. Your kids will learn English outside and at school. But in a foreign country, they will only learn about your culture and language inside the home.
Find a Good School that Offers Holistic Approach
Most countries have international schools which can cater even to the academic and cultural needs of foreign students. There is a Singapore International School which offers different curricula which can best suit your child’s needs, while Canadian International Schools offer the IB curriculum for primary to secondary students. These are all holistic curricula that incorporates academics, culture and well-being for the benefit of the children.
Learn Your Children’s Lessons
Make time to know what your children have been learning recently in school. It’s not only to bond and figure out how they are doing academically. But it is also a way for you to learn something about your new home. You can definitely learn something from your kids.
Educate Your Kids How to Respect Cultural Differences
Practice Open Communication within the Family
Good communication is the key to harmony in the family. This will build you up and help you cope as a family as you live in a foreign country.
Migrating to another country is a big step. But it also an opportunity as a family to grow and also learn together.
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