13 tips to help your child settle in to a new school

13 tips to help your child settle in to a new school

We’ve moved house! It has all been a bit crazy, what with packing up a million boxes while my kids try an unpack them at the same time, and I haven’t got around to sharing our news on the blog. We have moved back to Swansea, after 2 and half years away from here it feels so good to be home. Although we are all so excited to be back living by the sea and closer to family, Leo is a little bit nervous and sad as he will be starting a new primary school very soon. It was very hard saying goodbye to his old school, it really was a lovely little infant school, the staff were amazing and Leo had a great group of friends that he is missing loads already. We are currently waiting to hear back from the council to find out where Leo will be placed, in the meantime I am doing all I can to prepare my little boy for starting a new school. I want the transition to go as smoothly as possible and I have asked some fellow bloggers to share their tips with me on how to help your child settle in to a new school. If you are in a similar situation, I hope you find this post helpful and I am wishing you and your little one lots of good luck with the move. 

13 tips  to help your child settle in to a new school

1 ‘Going to visit the school beforehand really helps. Letting them get the feel of it all and meet some friendly faces!’ – Gee Gardener 

2 ‘We got the children to look on the school website to get a feel for the activities they complete. As well seeing what uniform they needed so we could go on a special shopping trip to get everything they needed.’ – Boo Roo and Tiger Too

3 ‘Visit the school as often as you can, if not too far ask for a 1/2 day settling in session before you move so they can meet kids before. Explain everything about what’s happening and reassurance. Mine were year 5 & 6 when we moved.’ – Us Three by the Sea

4 ‘My daughter moved schools midway through year 1. We visited her new school and had a little tour round before she started and she got to meet her headteacher and her new teacher. Her teacher partnered her up with another girl to help her settle in which helped. Kids are pretty resilient and adapt easily so just make it all sound exciting and I’m sure they’ll be fine!’ – Back with a Bump

5 ‘Signing them up to local sports clubs or groups like Beavers is a great way to help them make friends quicker. With them by their side, the new school isn’t half as scary anymore.’ – Mummy Alarm 

6 ‘Read books like Amy and the Feelings Basket – Starting School to help them with the emotional side of a starting new.’ – Diary of a first child

7 ‘Try and arrange a couple of play dates out of school either at the park or invite them round, that way they get to know one or two children really well and you can also make some friends with the new mums and dads which is always helpful.’ – The Strawberry Fountain 

8 ‘Talk about it like a new adventure. Build excitement around it as much as possible. As a parent I would be having conversations around ‘I wonder if this school does……x,y,z,’ with the responsibility being on the child to be the investigator and to come back with all the answers about their new place. Children love owning information. I would also ask family members not to make a huge deal over it. In my experience, being asked all the time about the ‘new School’ can make little ones build it into something much bigger than it would have otherwise been.’ – Kizmetcava 

new school pencils

9 ‘We moved house just before Christmas, it was a crazy time, we moved house, they changed schools, it was Christmas and I was 8 months pregnant. I think we didn’t make too much of a fuss, we showed the the uniform and emphasized how exciting it would be and how excited we were. We also looked online (on the school’s website) at the current topics and I told my eldest son, 8, that he would be learning about the Stone Age so he was really excited.’ – Life with the Busby’s 

10 ‘Take them to look round the school, book in a settling in session ideally wearing their new uniform.’ – Virtually All Sorts 

11 ‘It’s worth asking the teacher to buddy them up with another child and then making a real effort to encourage that friendship (as long as they get on!) with play dates and other out of school activities.’ – Frugal Family

12 ‘If you talk to the parents in the playground (go on – be brave!) you will find your child is more likely to be invited for tea/to parties etc. The more you integrate the easier it is for them.’ – A Beautiful Space

13 ‘If you can, try and coincide the start date with the beginning of a new term at school. We managed to have my son start his new school just after the Easter break last year and it helped a bit as the other children had also been away from the school for a couple of weeks.’ – Even Angels Fall 


I am definitely going to be putting these tips into practice and will have everything crossed that they help my little boy get off to a great start in his new school. Do you have any more tips to add to the list? Maybe you were moved around a lot as a child, how did you cope when starting at a brand new school? I would love for you to share you stories and advice in the comments.


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tips for starting a new school

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Everything I learnt from my child’s first term at school
I miss you  now you’re at school
Starting primary school – the mummy bloggers guide
The end of an era – my baby is going to big school

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  1. May 18, 2018 / 3:30 pm

    This is something at the back of my mind too. My kids haven’t started school just yet and I’m contemplating whether to move now or wait until they’re that bit older. So many pros and cons to consider!

  2. May 18, 2018 / 4:44 pm

    Some great tips here! Transitions can be so hard for children (and even us adults!) to deal with – hope your little one likes the new school!

  3. May 18, 2018 / 6:18 pm

    I can’t imagine how tough this could be for a kid. I definitely think visiting before and getting them comfortable is a great idea x

  4. May 18, 2018 / 6:25 pm

    So many fab tips here, as school can be hard. Play dates are a fab idea x

  5. May 18, 2018 / 7:33 pm

    It must be hard for kids to move schools, but these are some great tips that should make things a little easier. I hope your little one enjoys their new school!

  6. Ger ( It’s Me & Ethan)
    May 18, 2018 / 9:05 pm

    I am just going through this now with my youngest. You’d think I’d be a dab hand but I am finding it quite emotional as I am once again reminded that his firsts are my lasts ! Great tips guys x

  7. May 18, 2018 / 9:34 pm

    These are fab tips! As someone already said, little ones are pretty resilient and will usually adjust in time, especially with a fab mum cheering them on. Enjoy the new school xx
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  8. May 19, 2018 / 9:39 pm

    These are great tips – I have never had to move any of my children, thank goodness. I did everything to avoid it even when we moved. Kaz x

  9. March 30, 2019 / 10:38 pm

    It’s not quite the same but one of mine moved from mainstream to a special school and for her, transition took a long time. I think it was 4 months of her visiting the new school. I bought her uniform early on and made sure she wore the right uniform at the right school so that she felt like she fitted in wherever she was. She’s been there a year now and it’s the best decision we ever made.