Parenting can be difficult. I have found that to be true in my personal life, in the lives of my clients, and from what I see in our culture. Different people give different advice as to what to do and how to best raise our children. Long hours working can make being consistent difficult (or at least that seems to happen in my own life).
As a part of my role at the Pasco School District, I worked with the Bridges Program. It is a district level set of classrooms that work with students K-12th grade to help support some of the students who have some of the most severe behavioral impacts. One of the ways that I would commonly describe my role is as building a home - school - community connections.
I have spent a lot of time during the previous several years working to help support parents learn new skills, and learning from parents how they best work with their children. It has been fabulous. As a part of my role in the Pasco Discovery Coalition, I’ve been able to do some of the same. Several years ago, I was able to get trained to be a facilitator for Guiding Good Choices. It’s a pretty great evidence-based parenting program. I’ve enjoyed being able to implement training in it.
Last week I was able to get certified to implement the Strengthening Families Program for Parents and Youth 10-14. One thing that I find especially interesting and exciting about this program is it has components for both youth and parents. While Guiding Good Choices does have a component that youth participate in, the entire Strengthening Families Program is family-centered and both parents and youth are concurrently and working together learning skills. The program seems very interactive and engaging.
I’m a believer, that just like in therapy (I also just listened to a great episode of the Social Workers Podcast - Therapists as Writers: Interview with Lori Gottlieb where she expressed the same view about therapy), everybody can improve their parenting skills. We should all be trying to learn as many new skills and practices as we can.