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Moving house – some tips

Moving house is a major disruption in a family’s life. It might be a happy period, but it can also cause stress. In this period it is fundamental to communicate with your children about  aspects related with the new home and neighbourhood.

In order to make fitting into a new community easier, we suggest you follow these rules:

Check that your child knows his/her full name, address and telephone number. Show him/her where their new school is.

If your child has to catch a bus to go to school, make the trip with them and teach them to remember the number of the bus. Remind them to always stay close to other children.

Try to get to know your neighbours and introduce them to your children. It could be a way for your kids to make friends, helping them to integrate more quickly into the community.

Write a list with the telephone numbers for emergencies and stick it next to the telephone. If you have changed your number, check that your children have memorised it.

Make sure that there are other adults you can trust, who your child can contact in an emergency.

Walk around your neighbourhood with your children and teach them the names of the main streets with points of reference to help them remember them. Identify the main routes and the places where they can get help if they need it.

Converse with your kids about the safety rules to follow when they are alone in the  house. Do not forget to tell them to keep all doors and windows closed.

Warn your children to never give out identifying information over the telephone. If possible, install a system for recording messages.

Create a bond of trust with your kids so that they understand that you are always ready to help them or to clear up any doubts they might have.

> Test your children to see if they have absorbed these rules.

© Tinoni 2008 Serviço Municipal de Protecção Civil de Lisboa Design Agence de communication