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Global Transitions

“You have to leave well to enter well.”
David Pollock, Third Culture Kids Pioneer

Having worked with Tanglin families over the last 15 years, I have come to understand that cultural adaptation and dealing with change is no mean feat. Our School Counselling transition programmes support global mobility - whether students have newly arrived in Singapore or are leaving for pastures abroad. 

With David Pollock’s words of wisdom in mind, we have created and  delivered material for our young people to leave well to enter well. Most notably, our Arriving and Leaving workbooks. As the children move through the pages, the activities allow them to annotate and illustrate throughout. This allows children to come to terms with the move and helps adults support children preparing to arrive in or leave for a new country. There is a wellbeing theme that runs throughout the texts.

Based on the latest relocation and transition research, here are some top tips parents can bear in mind in not only support of their children but for themselves too.

For Leaving Well:
The GUTSS model, an acronym, provides the nuts and bolts of leaving well. A checklist of sorts, to enable a smooth exit (and smooth entry). It’s important the leaving child/ren understand the value of considering these five things as part of their leaving well plan. 

for Goodbye
Plan how to say farewell to the four Ps: people, places, pets, and possessions before the departure.

for Unload Feelings
Express how you are feeling about the move.

for Thank You
Think about how to say thank you to people who have made a difference in your time here.

for Self-care
Look after you during this time of change. 

for Say Hello
Get curious about your new destination.


For Arriving Well:
The same goes for arriving well in a new place. Here are the top 10 tips that parents can consider going through with their children. 

  • #1 - Be Brave
  • #2 - Be approachable and smile
  • #3 - Keep curious
  • #4 - Be yourself
  • #5- Be kind
  • #6 - Be grateful
  • #7 - Focus on your strengths
  • #8 - Remember your old place
  • #9 - Make your bedroom a haven
  • #10 - Ask for help

Get the Activity Books
The points above are expanded on within both the Arriving Well and Leaving Well Activity Books for children aged 6-12. They are available for preorder on (Moving On Series) before the books are released on 30 November. The School Shop will carry the books at a later date as well. There’s a Facilitator’s Guide to go with them so that adults can help the child get the most out of the two activity books - they may even learn some top tips for their own transition too.

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