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How Can We Help Kids With Transitions?

-Katherine Martinelli

With the right support, children can learn to change gears without whining and tantrums.

Many children struggle with transitions, which are common triggers for behaviors that range from annoying (whining, stalling) to upsetting (tantrums and meltdowns).

There are many ways parents and teacher can help kids have an easier time with transitions — and be able to behave better—but it may take a little experimentation to find out what clicks with each particular child.

These tools are useful to help kids of all stripes with transitions. But for kids with ADHD, anxiety, autism, or sensory processing, this kind of scaffolding is particularly crucial and can make the difference between a good day and a bad one. Over a period of time it can help pave the way for success.

Create routines: If a child “doesn’t want to transition because he likes consistency and routine and structure,” says Michael Rosenthal, a clinical neuropsychologist, “then start by building in consistency and routine and structure into the transition process itself.”

For transitions that will happen every day, like turning off the phone to go to bed, consistent routines can have big payoff. A bedtime routine, for example, might seem like something for babies, but having a predictable structure in place can be reassuring and helpful even for older kids (and adults!).

Preview and count down: Along with routines, previewing and countdowns are key. In the morning you might lay out what the day is going to look like. Dr. Rosenthal suggests doing a role-play in which you practice moving from activity to activity to “engage them in the process.”

Annual Foster Care Retreat
September 9, 2017
8:00am – 4:00pm
Wichita, KS
Volunteer to assist with youth care while parents are in training. Fun activities are planned, and breakfast and lunch are provided!

Contest! If you bring a friend who has not volunteered before, you will be entered for a chance to win a $25 gift card!

Email to sign up!

Upcoming Fundraising Event!
It’s Zumba Time!
3135 W Maple Wichita KS
Join us at the Flow Foundry Studio on Saturday July 29th, 10-11am
$20 Ticket includes entry, T-shirt, and refreshments!
Purchase tickets here!

Tee Off Fore Children Golf Classic!
A Benefit Tournament supporting The Scotty D. Memorial Foundation and TFI Kids Fund
September 22, 2017
Shawnee County Country Club
Topeka, KS
$75 per player
*Also a volunteer opportunity 🙂

Kansas News

Kansas Care Providers of the Month

Jimmy Blair and Shirley Herbison have been foster parents for over 20 years. During their time as foster parents they have adopted four children. Although their adoptive children are all grown up now, that has not stopped Jimmy and Shirley from opening their home to other children in foster care. They are currently the home for four teenage boys. They do a great job teaching the boys about respect and responsibility and are always encouraging them to get involved in sports and other activities at school. Even when it is hard to see the impact that they are making, they maintain a positive attitude and stick with it. Shirley maintains excellent communication with agency workers, school staff, and birth parents. In addition, Shirley is very involved in the boys’ therapy sessions. She transports them to the visits herself and sits in on the therapy sessions when it is allowed. Jimmy and Shirley take a genuine interest in the well-being of the children placed in their home and are true team players !

Between Families Recruitment Moment

Get a 2-3 year supply of Cheerios!
Did you know that 3-4 cups of Cheerios can get you 137 BOXES of Cheerios? Follow 6 easy steps.

Every cup of Cheerios is approximately 260 Cheerios.
This means that 4 cups of Cheerios is approximately 1,000 Cheerios.

Step 1: Measure out 4 cups of Cheerios
Step 2: Take one single Cheerio out.
Step 3: Take a photo of your single Cheerio separate from your 4 cups of Cheerios
Step 4: Post the picture on your social media or email to your friends and coworkers with this caption.
“To take care of every abused and neglected child, we only need 1 foster home for every 1,000 homes in our county. Interested in fostering? Go to
Step 5: Post the picture in your local “groups” on social media – Grapevines, Buy/Sell/Trade, etc.
Step 6: When someone says that you have referred them, receive $500 from TFI. This could buy you approximately 137 boxes of Cheerios!

Okay, so I know you likely will not buy Cheerios with your $500. I also know that the number of children in need varies in each county – but let that image settle for a moment. Generically speaking, each county needs 1 new foster home for every 700-1,000 homes in their respective county to keep every local child in need in their county or a neighboring county. Surely we can find 1 foster family for every 1,000 homes! If you know a lot of people, but just do not like “planning” events, then perhaps our Community Liaison Coordinators (CLC) can help organize a recruitment event for you to invite your friends to?

If you would like to know more specific statistics in your county, or would like to speak with your local CLC, please email our National Director of Recruitment– Jason Cecil at

Oklahoma News

Child Passenger Safety Week
September 17-23, 2017

Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children 1 to 12 years old. Many times deaths and injuries can be prevented by proper use of car seats, boosters, and seat belts.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) recommends that parents and caregivers ensure their child’s restraint system meets the following criteria to be in compliance.

    • Children under age 2 must be properly secured in a rear-facing car seat.
      • Rear-facing is the safest way for small children to travel, and they should remain rear-facing until they reach 2 years of age or until they exceed the height or weight limit of the car seat.
      • Riding rear-facing with legs bent or against the back of the seat is a safe and comfortable position for children. This position best protects their head, neck and spinal cord in the event of a crash.
    • All children under age 4 must be properly secured in a car seat with an internal harness.
      • A 5-point harness is the safest restraint system and should be used as long as possible (until the child exceeds the harness’ weight limit).
      • Children under age 8 must ride in a child passenger restraint system or booster seat unless they are taller than 4’9”.

Children taller than 4’9” or over age 7 should always be restrained in a seat belt. Riding in the back seat of the vehicle is the safest way for children to travel.

Have your car seat checked and be certain your child is riding in the right car seat for their age and size. Car seat checks will take place all over the state throughout the year and during National Child Passenger Safety Week September 17-23, 2017.

The Injury Prevention Service will provide car seat checks on demand for National Child Passenger Safety Week and by appointment for the rest of the year. The Oklahoma State Department of Health is located at 1000 NE 10th Street, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73117. Please be advised, your children must be with you to have your seat checked. A limited number of car seats will be available for eligible families.

For more information, please call 405-271-3430

Connections Compliment

Larry and Yvonne Blair have had placement of Madison practically since birth (20 months). Madison’s sister, Hailey age 7, was in a Therapeutic Foster Home since being placed in custody. Knowing the importance of connecting with family, the Blair family requested to have visits between Hailey and Madison. After a few months of coordinating visits, they then agreed to take placement of Hailey as she was being discharged from TFC in attempts to keep both siblings together. The family was well aware of her behaviors and knew to expect struggles, but also knew they needed to be the ones to help provide the care and resources she needed. The Blair family continues to be an advocate for the children and work to bridge the gap between biological family and foster family. Even though the mother no longer has parental rights, they work to keep her involved and a part of the children’s lives. The Blair family is in the process of adopting both children to provide them with a forever home and family. The Blair family is an inspiration to other foster parents in the aspect of Bridging with the biological family and ensuring siblings are not separated.

Annual Foster Care Retreat
September 9, 2017
8:00am – 4:00pm
Norman OK

Volunteer to assist with youth care while parents are in training. Fun activities are planned, and breakfast and lunch are provided!

Contest! If you bring a friend who has not volunteered before, you will be entered for a chance to win a $25 gift card!

Email to sign up!

Nebraska News

Ongoing Training Hours

To maintain an active foster care license in Nebraska, ongoing training is required. Licenses are effective for two years with yearly training requirements. Each year, twelve hours of training are needed for each foster parent. At the end of the two-year licensure, twenty-four trainings hours should be complete for each foster parent to renew your foster care license. Remember to send completed trainings to your foster care worker to ensure you receive credit for these trainings. Contact your foster care worker and they can help you find trainings in your area.

20 Years

Frederick Jr. and Julia Rosenberg

10 Years

Annette Dodd
Bradley and Jeanne Jenson

5 Years

Joseph and Glenda Johnson
James and Dianne Carpenter
Harry (Clayton) and Sherri B. Bridgette

1 Year

Shannon and Alicia Ortman
Billie and James Taylor
Bruce and Christina Van Cleave
Jonathan “Jon” and Joanne Yoder
Ray and Lori North
Kyle and Kristi Wong/McNeil-Wong
Timothy and Jean Hendrix
Steven and Kelli Shaddox


TFI has the following grant funding available to assist foster children and foster families. Please speak with your foster care worker for more information:

Pritchett Trust: Funds available to foster children placed in Crawford County, KS for the purchase of musical instruments and music lessons.

July Training

Cyber Bullying Articles & Facts

Cyber-Bullying Is Technology Powered
Cyber-bullying incidents have quadrupled. Most students don’t tell their parents.

by Margaret Ross, Kamaron Institute

Approximately half of U.S. students are impacted by traditional bullying each school day. It happens on buses, in the cafeteria, gym, hallways, playground, and in classrooms. The most frequent form bullying takes is words (teasing, taunting, ridiculing, name-calling, and gossip – not blows). This type of bullying happens in the “physical” world and that world has time and space limits. Cyber-bullying is making school days even more painful for many children and some school staff. Bullying in cyberspace is not bound by school hours, school days, or facing the intended bully victim. Unfortunately, the perceived anonymous nature of the internet often insulates the bully from the consequences of their damaging behavior.

As the number of households with Internet access approaches saturation and cell phone ownership expands to the 100 million mark, so do the ways kids bully each other. Cyber-bullying in the form of text messages, emails, photos, website postings can go school-wide in minutes and global in days. Slanderous information sent out into cyberspace is difficult, if not impossible, to expunge. Cyber-bullying often takes the form of cyber gossip, where damaging content is based on whim; not facts, and is posted on social networking sites such as MySpace and FaceBook.

Cyber-Bullying Getting Bigger: Studies indicate that cyber-bullying incidents have quadrupled in five years. A 2000 survey by the Crimes Against Children Research center at the University of New Hampshire reported 6 % of young people had experienced some form of cyber-bullying. In 2005, studies of 1500 Internet-using adolescents found that over one-third had been cyber bulled and half of those admitted to cyber-bullying others (Hinduja and Patchin, In Review.) A 2005 study by National Children’s Home Charity revealed that 20% had been cyber-bullying victims. A 2004 survey conducted by i-Safe America of 1556 adolescents found that 42 % had been bullied online.

How Cyber-Bulling Messages Are Communicated:

      • Text or digital imaging messages sent on cell phones
      • e-mails
      • instant messaging
      • web pages
      • web logs (blogs),
      • chat rooms or discussion groups, and
      • other information communication technologies

Cyber-bullying Perpetrators – It Is A Cycle:

      • Middle School and High School girls were about twice as likely as boys to display cyber-bullying behaviors in the form of email, text, and chat*
      • Middle School and High School girls were twice as likely as boys to report receiving email, text messages or chat room messages that teased, taunted, and ridiculed. *
      • 62% said that they had been cyber-bullied by another student at school, and 46% had been cyber-bullied by a friend. **
      • 55% didn’t know who had cyber-bullied them.

Only 20% cyber-bullying victims tell their parents about the incident. Victims are most likely to tell a friend (42%).

**(2005, Kowalski et al., Electronic bullying among school-aged children and youth.)

* (2007-2009, Kamaron Institute, School Surveys)

Ten Tips: Parents Cyber-Bullying Preemption

      • Consider installing filtering and blocking software, but understand clearly that proactive parents are the only real deterrent and the best resource for bullying preemption.
      • Keep your home computer(s) in easily viewable places, such as a family room or kitchen.
      • Model the behavior you want to see in your child
      • Talk regularly with your child about on-line activities he or she is involved in.
      • Set firm guidelines for cell phone use and monitor that behavior.
      • Talk specifically about cyber-bullying. Explain that that it is harmful and unacceptable behavior.
      • Outline your expectations for responsible online behavior and clearly explain the consequences for inappropriate behavior. Use the Cyber Positive Character Contract from this Kamaron site
      • Encourage your child to tell you immediately if he or she is a victim of cyber-bullying. Tell your child does not respond to the bully.
      • Stay calm. Plan in advance how you will calmly receive the news that your child is being bullied and the solution steps you will take. You will want the evidence. Tell your child to save the bullying messages or photo.
      • Call your child’s school; ask the principal what measurable, bullying preemption, activity-based programs they have in place today. Offer to serve on the group that expands the school’s behavior policy to include cyber bullying behavior that disrupts the schools teaching and learning environment. Ask about results.

More tips and tools for parents and teachers are available at the Kamaron Institute Resource Center on this site.
Margaret Ross, president Kamaron Institute ( is a business, relationship, and bullying preemption expert. Ross is a frequently featured guest on America’s top radio shows.



      1. Approximately half of U.S. students are impacted by traditional bullying each school day.
        1. True
        2. False
      2. Slanderous information sent out into cyberspace is not difficult to expunge.
        1. True
        2. False
      3. Fill in the blank A 2000 survey by the Crimes Against Children Research center at the University of New Hampshire reported ___% of young people had experienced some form of cyber-bullying.
      4. Name four tips to prevent cyber-bullying. 1.______________ 2._________________ 3._______________ 4.______________