Webinar: Building Safety and Connection in Foster and Adoptive Families

Session 2 – Helping Your Child Adjust to a New Environment

Upon arriving in a new environment, foster children typically feel afraid. It’s your job to help them acclimate, then gradually and gently teach rules and expectations. Assume that their current behaviors reflect what they know how to do, then introduce a new way. Throughout this process, continue building the safety and connection that are essential to your family’s well-being.


Throughout this process, continue building the safety and connection that are essential to your family’s well-being.


In Session 2, Amy Speidel provides specific tips and examples for teaching expectations, building structure and safety, fostering connection, and creating a foundation that makes it easier to resolve conflict. She also gives advice on unconditional love, keeping the joy and gratitude alive, and remembering to ask for support when you need it.

You may also be interested in Session 1 and Session 3 of the 3-part webinar series Building Safety and Connection in Foster and Adoptive Families.

Webinar Outline

  • 00:17 When and how to focus on expectations and guidelines
  • 03:55 How to build structure and safety
  • 05:57 Acclimating children to a new school
  • 06:30 Introducing expectations in context
  • 12:08 Prioritizing what to work on first
  • 15:36 Giving children opportunities to be of service
  • 17:05 The word of hope: “Yet”
  • 18:51 Reframing and understanding negative behaviors
  • 20:45 Building a foundation that makes it easier to resolve conflict
  • 24:34 Using I Love You Rituals to build connection with younger children
  • 25:16 Using joint attention to build connection with older children
  • 26:35 How to keep the joy alive
  • 27:50 Amy’s story on the importance of asking for help
  • 33:30 Modeling the behaviors you desire
  • 35:07 Demonstrating unconditional love

Resource Mentions

Helpful Next Steps