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How Moving Schools Can Affect A Child's Development

Regardless of why you decide to move your child to another school, it is expected that a child's development would be interrupted and somewhat altered.

As a parent responsible for this transition, it is important to recognise the potential impact of how moving schools can affect a child's development and take steps to help a child cope with this significant shift.

Read on to learn about the impacts and how to deal with them.

The Emotional Impact of Moving Schools

Considerably, the most significant impact a child can have when moving schools is the emotional one. It can cause young students to manifest anxiety, sadness, frustration, and loneliness.

Stress and anxiety are inevitable for children who struggle to adapt to a new environment. Children may feel nervous or worried about starting at a new school, making new friends, and adjusting to new routines. This can cause unease, fear, and apprehension, impacting their ability to focus on their studies.

The Emotional Impact of Moving Schools

Children can be affected emotionally when moving to a new school.

Sadness is also part of the process. When leaving familiar surroundings, friends, and teachers behind, it is natural to feel sad, leading to homesickness, confusion, loneliness, and a longing for what they have left behind.

Frustration is next on the list. Restarting everything, including routines, expectations, and learning styles, can be difficult and frustrating, especially if a child is doing well in their old learning environment. As they struggle to adjust to the new environment, they can get confused and frustrated, which may affect their self-esteem.

⇒ Maybe you’ll be interested in: Understanding Emotional Development in Early Childhood

The Academic Impact of Moving Schools

Moving to a new school can be a difficult transition for children, and it's completely understandable to be concerned about their academic progress during this time. One thing to keep in mind is that your child may face some challenges adapting to the new school's academic programmes and learning habits.

One common academic challenge that kids may experience when moving schools is missing important lessons or topics that were covered in their old school, which can create gaps in their knowledge.

Another challenge that your child may face is changes in the curriculum. Different schools may have different teaching approaches, which can result in changes to the curriculum and affect your child's ability to adjust and keep up with their studies.

Finally, different teaching methods can also impact your child's academic performance. New teachers may have different teaching styles, which can sometimes make it harder for kids to learn and understand new concepts.

The Social Impact of Moving Schools

Moving to a new school can be a daunting experience for any student, but it can be especially challenging for young children who are still building their social skills.

One of the most significant impacts of moving schools is the change in social dynamics that students may experience. They may have to navigate new social hierarchies, peer groups, and cliques, which can be confusing and challenging to adjust to.

Another social aspect of moving schools is the difficulty of forming new friendships. It is not uncommon for children to feel shy or anxious about approaching new people, which can make it difficult to make new friends. As a result, they may experience feelings of isolation and loneliness, which can negatively impact their overall well-being.

Help Your Child Develop Coping Mechanisms for Changing Schools

Moving schools can be a challenge, but it can also be an opportunity for your child to grow and learn. With your support, your child can make the most of this new experience.

More or less, parents can teach their children coping strategies and prepare them emotionally during the initial period of moving to a new school, which include:

Encourage Open Communication

Communication between concerned parents and affected children is the best way to identify clearly what issues these young minds are dealing with and, in turn, make them feel safe and relieved in their journey through this difficult time.

To do so, parents need to supportively motivate their kids to communicate openly about their feelings and pay active attention to them.

If done right, children could express their deepest concerns, and parents could help them solve those issues, including school violence and academic obstacles.

Encourage Open Communication

Be sure to stay close to a child during their time getting along with the new school.

Connect with Classmates

Not every child must walk alone on the path to making new friends. Instead, parents can also join them to improve their circle of friends by inspiring them to get involved in activities or clubs that interest them, introducing them to other children in the community or arranging playdates to help them build social connections.

Focus on The Positive

One way to combat the negative aspects of moving schools within a young mind is to help them stay focused on the positive aspects of this big change, including the opportunity to make new friends, learn new things, and have new experiences.

Seek Support

Don't hesitate to seek support if your child is struggling with the transition. Parents can try talking to a mental health professional for more in-depth answers to these issues.

It is also the new school's responsibility to make the new students feel comfortable, happy, and welcome; thus, parents could also find support from teachers or school counsellors there.

Seek Support

It is one of UNIS Hanoi’s responsibilities to uplift children to their best potential.


Moving schools can have significant emotional, educational, and social impacts on a child's development. In parents' efforts to relocate their child to a new learning environment, it is wise to also include concerns about how moving schools can affect a child's development and methods that could solve these troublesome issues.

If you are trying to find the best school environment for your child, the United Nations International School of Hanoi (UNIS Hanoi) is the best option.

With more than 30 years in the education field, we know that students learn most effectively when they are happy and healthy. At our school, we prioritise the well-being of our students. That's why we have a School Health Centre as part of our campus services. Staffed by qualified professionals, it provides support and assists students in adjusting to a new school during the school day. Our focus is on addressing student health and wellness needs with care and a holistic approach.

At UNIS Hanoi, inclusion is also facilitated through factors like collaboration for the success of all students and solution-oriented action for learner variability, with the intention to provide personalised pathways and remove barriers to student success.

Children of all ages, especially younger ones, can find and even become better versions of themselves here. Enrol now for our new school year of 2023-2024 by clicking here!