Many parents try to time their move to summer so kids can be on the bus on day one. But there are benefits to moving once the school year has started.
Moving in the summer makes sense—on paper. For starters, your kids will have a few weeks to get acclimated without missing a minute in their old or new schools. But, often, that’s not the major perk parents make it out to be—and, often, the midyear move makes even more sense.
Why? Because, depending on your child’s age, the summer benefits you’re anticipating may not be so significant. During the summer, your new neighborhood could go quiet. Kids go to camp, spend their days at the pool, beach and country clubs, play travel sports and head to vacation homes, making them less out-and-about as they are once school starts.
But if you move mid-year? Expect your kid to get tons of attention and slide right into the mix even faster. Here’s why, and here’s how.
#1. They’re everyone’s new BFF
Friends are huge when it comes to acclimating to a new community and new school—and moving mid-year rather than starting fresh in the fall can actually help your children make friends fast.
Think about it: at the start of the school year, everything is new—new classmates, new teachers, new rooms, new subjects. In all of that “newness,” it’s easy for the new kid to get a little lost in the shuffle. However, move in the middle of the school year and your child will be the focus with added attention from teachers, classmates and administrators.
As the new kids in school, they will likely receive a very special introduction to their classmates, and other students will be instantly fascinated by the new face in town. For elementary school kids, that’s often all it takes to find a BFF ASAP.
#2. Get the real feel
Again, summer isn’t always the best indicator of what “real life” looks like in a suburb. With families hitting their summer homes, kids heading to camp and private clubs packed from Memorial Day on, the warmer months aren’t always best for gauging a community—or making meaningful connections.
During the school year, there are more opportunities to mix and mingle, naturally. Whether it’s chatting with families at the bus stop, popping by school activities and evening events or, simply, the fact that your kid will no doubt score a few birthday party invites immediately, your entire family will have more chances to meet people and make friends.
#3. One word: SPORTS
Like school, sports—or dance or theater or painting classes—can be an amazing way for your kids to make friends almost instantly. While there are no doubt games, classes and shows in the summer, often they’re more camp-based with kids from all over the area. While that’s a fun way to spend the summer and maybe meet a new friend or two, during the school year you’ll be able to enroll your child in local sports and other activities anchored in town, ensuring they’re meeting new pals from their school.
And that friend-making doesn’t have to start post-move. Once you’ve picked your ‘burb, you can sign kids up for town activities pre-move. That way, at the very least, you have a few familiar faces in town when you arrive, no matter what time of year.
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