Did your kid come with a user’s manual? Most don’t. Did you take classes in high school or college on how to parent correctly? Most of us didn’t. Did your parents do everything right, providing you with a perfect example to follow? Most of us would say, no way.
So, the question really should be, why aren’t you taking a parenting class right now?
Why Parenting Classes Are Important
Parenting classes have a lot to offer at every stage of our child’s development. When we have our first, new baby on the way, most of don’t think twice about enrolling in some basic prenatal classes because we know we’re clueless about how to birth a baby, much less keep a new baby alive.
But after these initial classes, we tend to give up on classroom learning and opt for a trial-by-fire experience. Why? Probably because most of us aren’t even aware parenting classes exist.
Parenting classes tackle nearly every stage of child development and topic imaginable, from potty training and discipline to online safety and special health challenges. Parenting classes aren’t just for biological parents either. They are for stepparents, adoptive parents, older parents, first-time parents, grandparents, and many more.
What to Expect
Parenting classes give you an idea of what to expect at the different stages of your child’s development. You’ll understand the role you need to play in different types of situations, learn new strategies for dealing with setbacks and challenges, gain valuable resources, and most importantly, learn from other parents just like you.
Parenting classes also allow you to stay abreast on the latest research. How many of us are befuddled by the constantly changing reports we hear on TV or social media about the latest and greatest ways to raise kids? Are vaccines safe? Are vaccines not safe? Praise your kids? Only give your kids specific praise? Is screen time bad for kids? Is screen time good for kids? Spank or don’t spank? And the list goes on and on. Most of these research studies are far more complex than what the news media covers in a thirty-second sound bite. In a parenting class, you can dig deeper into the research and make informed decisions on what is best for you and your family.
Finally, you’ll have the opportunity to bond with other like-minded parents who are facing the same challenges that you are currently facing. You can discuss ideas and approaches that have worked and not worked and gain a valuable new perspective on your parenting style and your relationship with your children.
Find a Free Parenting Class
Parenting classes are offered at a location closer than you may think. Free parenting classes are provided by all kinds of organizations, from hospitals and doctor’s offices to social service agencies and non-profit organizations like The Center for Parenting Education
or your local United Way agency.