Parenting classes are designed to help both new and seasoned parents learn the skills necessary to be the best caregivers they can be. Parenting is the most rewarding job anyone could ever have, but as many of us know, it can also be the most frustrating. Parenting is a tremendous responsibility and the first time around, or even the 5th, issues might arise that you just don’t feel equipped to handle. Turning to a friend, relative or neighbor for advice can be comforting, but you might end up with a number of conflicting opinions. If you are ready to get some sound, research-based advice, parenting classes is the way to go. They are available in-person for people who like to be in public, group settings or online for people who are more interested in convenience, flexibility and privacy. There are generally three types of classes to choose from including Parenting, Co-Parenting and High Conflict Co-Parenting.
What is the difference between a Parenting Class and Co-parenting class?
In a nutshell, a parenting class is usually directed by a specialist and focuses on teaching parents how to:
- Understand and implement different parenting styles
- Manage stress
- Learn what to expect at different ages and stages
- Successful boundary setting techniques
- Appropriate rewards and discipline
- Anger and Conflict resolution skills
- Empathy training
- How to build self-esteem
- Useful ways to communicate
- Common parenting mistakes to avoid
Co-parenting classes cover these important topics but are also designed to teach individuals how to successfully parent together after divorce or separation. A co-parenting program helps parents to understand that they must put aside their anger and differences for the best interest of the kids. Numerous studies show that children of divorce can go on to have healthy, successful relationships of their own but it’s important to establish a safe, well-balanced two household environment early on. Co-parenting classes are often court ordered to help mom and dad reduce the stress on the kids from their own conflicts, encourage empathy of the kids needs, and take personal responsibility to keep bonds strong.
Co-parenting classes include:
- Understanding the legal process of divorce
- Teamwork plans
- Skills in dispute resolution
- Importance of keeping children out of your arguments
- Step family concerns
- Step family life cycles
- Facts about children and divorce
- Divorce counseling education
High Conflict co-parenting classes cover the same topics but are longer and go more into depth on each topic.
With today’s technology online courses allow busy parents to educate themselves at their own pace and in the comfort of their own home. Caregivers simply register for the length of class they would like and then it becomes immediately available on any web-based computer like a Smartphone, Ipad or Laptop. Classes can be taken while the kids are napping or late at night when they’ve gone to sleep. There’s no need to worry about finding and paying for a babysitter or driving miles away.
Just like a live class, when you have completed the allotted number of hours, clients take a multiple-choice final exam. Once you pass, a Certificate of Completion is sent to you to verify that you successfully fulfilled the court requirements. You will find this method of learning a stress-free, engaging and educational way to learn new parenting skills.