Top 5 Key Information To Prepare Your Kids For The Expat Life

22 October 2013



Preparing for the expat life is challenging enough for an adult, for children, they are on a whole new level. Here’s some of the best ways to prepare your kids to the new and exciting world of Expat Life. There are a few key topics that you have to run through to not only prepare your kids, but also to get them happy and excited to embark in this new lifestyle.


1. History and Ground Information


Get down to the basics of preparing for living abroad. Gather information about the country you’re moving to. Unlike researching for yourself, you have to gather information a bit more interesting for a child. Remember, it’s always best to have them on board with the idea of moving. Make them feel like they will go on an adventure. Find out information that can trigger their own interest, this way, they would feel like they’re about to embark on something exciting instead of feeling like they are going to be exiled.


2. Food



Food is one of the main challenges in raising a child in and out of an expat lifestyle. Moving them to a different country definitely poses a new level of challenge. We all know that getting kids to eat the right kind of food is a challenge in itself, but to do this in a different country with different kinds of cuisine available produces a new level of difficulty. Of course to prepare for this, you have to gather information about the country’s local dishes. What kinds of food are readily available, what types of restaurants are abundant in your area and whether or not a market where fresh food is available. You might want to steer clear of the local delicacies especially extremely exotic food, but do try to find a local delicacy that you think your child might like. Before you let your child eat anything local, research on how the food is prepared and what ingredients go in it. Use information about food, like a local dish that highlights their favourites for example or a restaurant that they might like to assure them that even though they are moving away from their home, they would be enjoying exciting new things including new cuisines they might enjoy.


3. Communication




It is never easy to prepare a child to move to a different place especially if they have already a set of friends, group and community in your home country. A way to soften the blow about this is to inform them of way to keep in contact with their friends and loved ones. Show them ways in which they can communicate easily with their peers even after they have moved to a different country. Give them the options of the means of communication available to them to keep a close relationship with the loved ones they will leave behind.


4. Education


Finding a good school for your children while living abroad should always be in your top priority, but while this is important to you in the aspect of giving your kids a good platform for learning, you have to understand that it is important to them in a different aspect. It is important for kids to know that in whatever school you choose for them, they will not feel alienated or left out. Aside from your choices of schools with good academic standings and awards, do consider that they will have a better chance to adjust and enjoy their life in a different country if you put them in a community where they would not feel like an outcast. Consider international schools with other expat children whom your children can also relate to. Research all the available educational options and discuss it with your kids. This way you can work out the best case scenario in their transition and they will feel that you are really including them in your decision making process when it comes to their future.


5. Extra Curricular Activities and Leisure Time


School is not the only thing that should be in your top priority in preparing your kids for the expat lifestyle, you also have to understand that they would still spend a lot of time out of school and you should also get information on all the things that they can do while school is out. Get information on the places that you can go to with your kids on weekends or on holidays. These can be anything from nature parks to cultural centres etc. that you and your kids can enjoy and learn from.


There are many perks in the Expat Lifestyle. While it is sometimes hard to let your children go through this type of transition, it can be very rewarding for them in the end. Highlight all the positive things that they can experience by going through the expat journey and you will see that they will learn to appreciate it as an advantage when they grow older.