Thursday, January 21, 2010

Is Parenting Easier than Driving?

Have you ever noticed that we put more work into learning to drive than we do into learning to be good parents? Most of us take the job seriously but don't really seek out any kind of training (other than the school of hard knocks). But why? Why would we not want to learn as much as possible about teaching and helping our kids when there is a wealth of information available?
It was this blog that helped me discover a very useful tool. A friend and fellow member of our church read my blog. She is the mother of three all under the age of four. She sent me a message praising the blog as a good way to reach out to others for advice (i.e. help) and she shared that when they had their first little one her husband and her attended a parenting class offered by our church.
This got me thinking and searching. It turns out that the parenting class is an effort funded by the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation and it is offered by many non-profits throughout San Antonio and Texas in both English and Spanish (I'm sure that if this exact class is not available in your area other positive parenting classes are). So I signed us up for the first class available.
Last night we attended our second night of Precious Minds, New Connections parenting classes and I have to say that this is a great tool indeed. This particular class is taught by two seasoned moms who are also educators and very easy going. Yes, some of the material is information we're already familiar with like Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs or Erikson's Developmental Stages (ever heard of a mid-life crisis) BUT it is good to review and even better to learn how to apply these theories to help you parent better.
This class teaches us parents how to understand our child or children well enough to determine how to best help them develop into stable adults. In reality, if we listen carefully and are open minded we can even pick-up great tips on how to improve our social interactions with almost everyone including our spouses.
Most of the Precious Minds, New Connections parenting classes provide free child care during the class time and snacks & refreshments during class. You can find a class by checking with your church or synagogue or other non-profits. You may also find a class by searching online.
I highly recommend that every parent of a child four and under take this class or another comparable positive parenting class. It will be worth your time and you might meet some other parents who share your concerns and your goals. I'm looking forward to our other six classes and hope to use these tools for years to come as I trek through parenthood.