The type of transition must firstly be considered. Is it a change related to a child progressing with age - such as leaving nursery and entering school, or switching into the upper age group at church Sunday class? If so, transitions can have very positive effects - providing the child feesl like they fit in socially in their new setting. This is often much easier if the child isn't making the transition alone. If they can see their old friends are present in their new environment, the transition will seem a lot less daunting and they will feel comfortable more quickly. However, if the child is, for instance, starting a school in a different area where they don't know anybody, they could become shy and withdrawn.
The extent of the transition is also important. A change from playgroup to nursery class could be considered a small change, and the child is likely to take it in their stride and adapt quickly, developing good social skills as they go along. But a significant transition - such as moving away from parents to a boarding school - could have more drastic effects. It is essential that children are welcoming socially in situations such as these.