If you are moving to Bangkok with your family, you are likely experiencing a cocktail of emotions right now. There’s the giddy excitement of starting a new life and enjoying fresh experiences…and then there’s the gut-wrenching fear of whether or not your children are going to love it as much as you do.
If you are worried about your children and how they adjust to life in a new international school in Bangkok, read on and we’ll share some tips for easing them along.
1. Choose an amazing school
The first tip will be far easier than you’d imagine. The fact is, Bangkok is home to some of the finest international schools in the world – so you won’t have much trouble finding the perfect school for your children.
The best international schools are well-versed in helping expatriate children to adjust to their new environment. And the good news is that, in addition to plenty of friendly Thai children, they will be surrounded by other foreign children as well (which can help for them to feel less alienated).
2. Move somewhere close to your chosen school
Take your time and do plenty of research. This should be your number one priority when choosing where to live in Bangkok. As nice as it is having a short commute to work – your children’s journey to school is more important.
Adjusting to their new lifestyle will be difficult enough as it is without your children having to worry about a miserable commute to school every morning.
Move as close to their international school as possible, not only for your peace of mind, but for their convenience.
The Lumpini Township Rangsit-Klong 1 for example, is in relative proximity to a number of excellent international schools.
3. Keep their old friends close!
Encourage your children to stay in contact with their old friends from home. Having regular Skype catch-ups is important for them to remember that they aren’t saying goodbye forever!
If possible, you could even arrange with the other parents for their friends to come and visit at some point.
4. Choose an expat-friendly area
Just as it’s important to move as close to the international school as possible, you should do some research into the best expat areas with other families. While your children will certainly make many new Thai friends, it will ease the transition if there are other Western families for them to interact with as well – particularly while they are learning a new language.
5. Communicate (and listen)
Again, your children likely won’t be as excited about the move as you are. Some children relish the adventure; others are miserable about leaving their best friends behind. This is why communication is so important! Take the time to talk and – more importantly – listen to your children regarding their thoughts and feelings. If they feel like they can come to you with anything, it will help them with their transition, while remaining focused on their education.
Final thoughts: It’s all in the school
We really cannot overstate how important it is to choose the right international school. While there are plenty of excellent candidates, the very best schools will make the transition for your children feel practically effortless.