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How to Help Your Teen Survive Being the New Kid at School

Posted by on Sep. 4, 2013 at 11:28 AM
  • 5 Replies

How to Help Your Teen Survive Being the New Kid at School

by Ericka Sóuter

lonely teenFew things are as nerve-wracking to a teen than being the new kid at school. While most people already have their friends and cliques in place, she will need to figure out just where she fits in. Just the thought of walking into a huge cafeteria with tray in hand and no idea where to sit is scary. But they don't have to figure it out alone. There are things parents can do to ease that transition. Check out how to help your teen happily adjust to life in a new school.

  1. Don’t dress her. Unless your kid is a Goth Vampire, trust her fashion sense. You want her to feel comfortable, relaxed, and like herself.  
  2. Meet the neighbors. If there are other students on your block, invite their families over for a BBQ or dessert to break the ice and help your kid meet peers.
  3. Encourage her to join a team or club. Being a part of a team is a great way to make new friends and already shows them you have a common interest
  4. Volunteer. A lot of teens lend their time to good causes to beef up college applications (and out of the goodness of their hearts). This may be another good way to find a new friend.
  5. Tell her to avoid the mean girls. This doesn't just mean avoid being a target. Look for BFFs among a nicer group of girls. Mean girls have a habit of turning on each other and that can be even more brutal. 
  6. Let her be who she wants to be. Going to a new school is a great chance to reinvent yourself. Give her the freedom to do that.
  7. Don't embarrass her. As parents, sometimes we don't realize how mortifying our behavior is. Something that seems so innocent to us will make your kid want to die of shame. For example, don't use what you think is cool slang in front of her friends; don't yell reminders out the car window after drop-off; and don't share any embarrassing (but cute) personal details with her pals. 

What other ways can parents help kids survive a new school?

by on Sep. 4, 2013 at 11:28 AM
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Replies (1-5):
atlmom2
by Susie on Sep. 4, 2013 at 11:36 AM
Mine started new schools in multiple states, and Italy. Moving around was just a way of life. Made them more personable and outgoing to seek out new friends. They never complained and say now as adults, they are glad they grew up the way they did. They feel kids who never move are so, well boring, lol. Guess what, dh and I never moved as kids. My kids are worldly and just know so much more than we ever could have.
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3mom627
by Member on Sep. 4, 2013 at 5:57 PM

 Those are all great tips. My DD came from Ukraine at 9 and had a very rough time. Our 13 year old foster daughter is having a rough time also. I think girls have a harder time than boys. So much drama, especially at the jr. high level. It is pitiful what these girls have had to go through.

3MOM627

have a nice day

boys2men2soon
by Kimberly on Sep. 5, 2013 at 10:14 AM

My kids have never moved!    We have lived in the same house since our oldest was a year old.   They have gone to the same schools, with the same kids forever.

We are boring, creatures of habit. lol




Hannahluvsdogs
by Bronze Member on Sep. 5, 2013 at 10:40 AM
2 moms liked this

We have to move every few years for my DH's work so my older two are used to it. My high schooler has gone to 5 different schools. He told me his strategy is just to start talking to people in his classes - "What'd you do over the summer?", "What do you think of this teacher?", questions like that. You quickly find out if someone is nice or not.

Barabell
by Barbara on Sep. 5, 2013 at 8:32 PM

I think that's some good advice, but I don't think we'll have to worry about this. I believe my son will know a few kids at the high school we'll be signing him up for. We're making that official decision at the start of the new year.

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