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Arriving Transition to IST. Adjustment Curve What is culture shock and cultural adjustment? There are 9 stages of cultural adjustment. Most people manage.

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Presentation on theme: "Arriving Transition to IST. Adjustment Curve What is culture shock and cultural adjustment? There are 9 stages of cultural adjustment. Most people manage."— Presentation transcript:

1 Arriving Transition to IST

2 Adjustment Curve

3 What is culture shock and cultural adjustment? There are 9 stages of cultural adjustment. Most people manage perfectly well! There are 9 stages of cultural adjustment. Most people manage perfectly well! Stage 1. Own culture. We are at home, living normally. Stage 2. Move to new country. We have arrived! We have arrived! Loss, Chaos, and Expectations Sometimes the chaos is so great that we don’t let ourselves grieve the loss we are feeling, even though this is when the feelings are most acute. Sometimes the chaos is so great that we don’t let ourselves grieve the loss we are feeling, even though this is when the feelings are most acute.

4 It is important to- Mourn losses and let the children mourn also. Mourn losses and let the children mourn also. Listen, reminisce, give children the freedom to express their sadness. Listen, reminisce, give children the freedom to express their sadness. Important objects – a teddy bear, a piece of jewelry –can remind us of the continuity in our lives. Important objects – a teddy bear, a piece of jewelry –can remind us of the continuity in our lives. Increased family conflict may occur! Increased family conflict may occur!

5 Children must understand that optimism about the new places and people does not erase sadness about the old. Children must understand that optimism about the new places and people does not erase sadness about the old. Children also should understand that liking new places and new friends does not devalue the old friends and places. Children also should understand that liking new places and new friends does not devalue the old friends and places. Life continues; another chapter. Life continues; another chapter.

6 Stage 3. Honeymoon phase We usually look for what is familiar. We often find some similarity with our own culture. People are welcoming and caring, so we tend to feel good and function well. We usually look for what is familiar. We often find some similarity with our own culture. People are welcoming and caring, so we tend to feel good and function well. Stage 4.The differences! Eventually with more host culture interaction we start realising the differences. We may judge the host culture negatively. (This is often after about 6 weeks- be prepared!) Eventually with more host culture interaction we start realising the differences. We may judge the host culture negatively. (This is often after about 6 weeks- be prepared!)

7 Stage 5. Understanding Stage 5. Understanding As we begin to interact more with host culture we begin to understand it. We start to feel at home. As we begin to interact more with host culture we begin to understand it. We start to feel at home. Stage 6. Holiday Stage 6. Holiday We may return to our own culture- perhaps for a holiday. Stage 7. Postive functioning. Stage 7. Postive functioning. We know how things work. We can function easily.

8 Stage 8. Questioning. Stage 8. Questioning. Often we see how much has changed. We may question home country values, beliefs and behaviours. We do not expect this! Stage 9. Cross cultural understanding. Stage 9. Cross cultural understanding. Begin to adjust. Understand both cultures. We have a broader understanding of ourselves and the world. Begin to adjust. Understand both cultures. We have a broader understanding of ourselves and the world.

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10 Arrival (non-employed partner) Often in expatriate communities, this is the mother. Many have left successful careers, and lives in which they were completely self-sufficient. Often in expatriate communities, this is the mother. Many have left successful careers, and lives in which they were completely self-sufficient. The idea of moving abroad was exciting and romantic, but the reality is that she has found herself in a place where she may feel less capable. The idea of moving abroad was exciting and romantic, but the reality is that she has found herself in a place where she may feel less capable. Her struggle to forge a new identity can affect the entire family. Children will pick up on this! Her struggle to forge a new identity can affect the entire family. Children will pick up on this! Husbands who follow their wives’ jobs may also have a difficult time, with fewer peers with whom to bond. Husbands who follow their wives’ jobs may also have a difficult time, with fewer peers with whom to bond.

11 Arrival- child New children may have trouble breaking into friendship groups. New children may have trouble breaking into friendship groups. Normal turnover at international schools is 15-20%, so they are not alone. Normal turnover at international schools is 15-20%, so they are not alone. The more challenging the posting, generally the easier it is to make friends. The more challenging the posting, generally the easier it is to make friends.

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13 What can parents do? Parents play an important role in the way children experience the international lifestyle.. Parents play an important role in the way children experience the international lifestyle.. Through our attitudes and actions we can maximize the quality and pleasure of the experience. Through our attitudes and actions we can maximize the quality and pleasure of the experience. Find a balance between own and host culture. Find a balance between own and host culture.

14 Teach tolerance Tolerance: Openness and respect for the differences that exist among people. Tolerance: Openness and respect for the differences that exist among people. Learn from others Learn from others Value differences Value differences

15 Parent’s relationship Commitment to each other Commitment to each other Respect and support of one another Respect and support of one another Kids feel secure when they know their parents “like” each other. Kids feel secure when they know their parents “like” each other. Look after yourselves. Look after yourselves.

16 Stress? A highly stressed parent can affect the way a child adapts to a new culture.. A highly stressed parent can affect the way a child adapts to a new culture.. Don’t put yourself last.. Don’t put yourself last.. Take care of yourself.. Take care of yourself.. Eat right Eat right Exercise Exercise Socialize Socialize Join clubs and groups Join clubs and groups You are important too! You are important too!

17 Avoid… Not listening to your child when they say they are unhappy. Not listening to your child when they say they are unhappy. Giving your child too much freedom. Giving your child too much freedom. Being negative about the local people, environment, or culture in front of your child. Being negative about the local people, environment, or culture in front of your child. Speaking of your home country as superior. Speaking of your home country as superior. Not embracing the culture and country you live in. Not embracing the culture and country you live in. Remaining in an “expat” bubble and not venturing beyond your comfort zone. Remaining in an “expat” bubble and not venturing beyond your comfort zone.

18 Children Home is where parents are. Home is where parents are. They may have difficulty leaving other care-givers. They may have difficulty leaving other care-givers. School age kids School age kids Do better if siblings attend new school Do better if siblings attend new school “Things” are more important than relationships (initially) “Things” are more important than relationships (initially) May ‘act out’ if feeling unhappy. May ‘act out’ if feeling unhappy.

19 Teens Face the greatest challenges as it’s already a difficult time. Face the greatest challenges as it’s already a difficult time. Some may be resistant to leaving their peer group. Some may be resistant to leaving their peer group. Others may see it as an opportunity to re-invent themselves. Others may see it as an opportunity to re-invent themselves.

20 TIPS Let your kids be sad.. Let your kids be sad.. It is ok for them to grieve the loss of a country, friends, school, etc. It is ok for them to grieve the loss of a country, friends, school, etc. Try not to minimize their feelings.. Try not to minimize their feelings.. Be there when they need you.. Be there when they need you.. Validate and comfort them.. Validate and comfort them.. Be patient.. Be patient..

21 Watch out for… Irritability Irritability Not interested in spending time with friends or doing fun activities.. Not interested in spending time with friends or doing fun activities.. Frequent stomach and head pains Frequent stomach and head pains Not sleeping Not sleeping Losing or gaining weight Losing or gaining weight Tearfulness Tearfulness Not doing well in school Not doing well in school Lack off energy or complaining that they are bored or tired.. Lack off energy or complaining that they are bored or tired..

22 Talking about running away Talking about running away Low self-esteem Low self-esteem Giving away favorite belongings Giving away favorite belongings Talking about death or suicide Talking about death or suicide Teenage depression can be exhibited as irritability more so than sadness. Teenage depression can be exhibited as irritability more so than sadness. They will isolate from some, but not all, of their friends. They will isolate from some, but not all, of their friends. They may be overly sensitive to criticism, rejection, or failure. They may be overly sensitive to criticism, rejection, or failure. They may have undiagnosed aches and pains. They may have undiagnosed aches and pains.

23 Concerned? Moving to a new culture is challenging! Moving to a new culture is challenging! Please, if you are concerned at any time contact the classroom teacher or Mrs Hook. Please, if you are concerned at any time contact the classroom teacher or Mrs Hook. Remember: It is NORMAL for adults and children to feel ’down’. Usually this phase does not last long. Remember: It is NORMAL for adults and children to feel ’down’. Usually this phase does not last long. We also have a variety of library books you can borrow or check the websites at the conclusion. We also have a variety of library books you can borrow or check the websites at the conclusion.

24 IST has many books in the library to help you.

25 Resources _ Third Culture Kids: The Experience of Growing Up Among Worlds. David Pollock and Ruth Van Reken, _ Third Culture Kids: The Experience of Growing Up Among Worlds. David Pollock and Ruth Van Reken, _ Notes from a Traveling Childhood. Karen Curnow McCluskey, _ Notes from a Traveling Childhood. Karen Curnow McCluskey, _ The Art of Coming Home. Craig Sorti. _ The Art of Coming Home. Craig Sorti. _ Homeward Bound: A spouse guide to repatriation. Robin Pascoe _ Homeward Bound: A spouse guide to repatriation. Robin Pascoe _ Survival Kit for Overseas Living. Robert Kohl. _ Survival Kit for Overseas Living. Robert Kohl. _ Among Worlds magazine (www.interactionintl.org/amongworlds.asp) encourages and empowers TCKs. _ Among Worlds magazine (www.interactionintl.org/amongworlds.asp) encourages and empowers TCKs. _ Here TCKs blog about their experiences, ask questions, view _ Here TCKs blog about their experiences, ask questions, view current research, and meet other TCKs (TCKID, 2008). current research, and meet other TCKs (TCKID, 2008). _ “Third Culture Kid” Facebook group, which has more than 16,000 members. _ “Third Culture Kid” Facebook group, which has more than 16,000 members. _ More and more universities have social organizations specifically for TCKs. _ More and more universities have social organizations specifically for TCKs.


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