Mums, dads taught magic of parenting
MUMS and dads can learn how to manage difficult behaviour in 2 to 12- year- olds at parenting workshops being held in Townsville this month.
Townsville psychologist Tracy Blanchard, from Learn. Grow. Flourish, is running the 1- 2- 3 Magic and Emotion Coaching program, with the first of three sessions beginning this weekend.
Ms Blanchard said it was a popular and effective parenting course designed to teach mums and dads to use “less talk and less emotion’’ when dealing with their children’s challenging behaviour.
“We look at what is feeding into that cycle of behaviour and look at what parents might be doing to enable the behaviour to continue,’’ she said.
“Strategies to effectively encourage children to start a behaviour, such as packing up their toys, are often very different to strategies that effectively stop a behaviour, such as arguing with a parent.’’
“Often we are using the wrong strategies to get our desired response, leading to great frustration.’’
The program encourages a calm approach to parenting, even in challenging moments, and shows how to improve the relationship between parent and child.
Ms Blanchard is a mother of one and said it was a great method to help teach children to manage their emotions, to be more resilient and make better choices.
“It’s very much about understanding what children are going through and how to best support them,’’ she said.
“It’s all about getting children to self- regulate their behaviour and to encourage them to want to make the right decisions. It’s teaching children to learn about their emotions and then practise certain skills to self manage those emotions.’’
The program is taught in three two- hour meetings and dads are encouraged to attend via a special couple price.
It aims to help parents of children in the pre- primary and primary school years, although Ms Blanchard believes the earlier parents learn the Emotion Coaching strategies the better the outcome for their children.
“I see it as a proactive parenting strategy,’’ she said.
“The younger your child is when you do the course the better because as they get older they’ll know the system you’ve put in place to deal with behaviour and know what to expect.
“Although it’s time con- suming to have to come along to three separate sessions, it allows strategies to be implemented as a parent and to come back and have a discussion and feedback on how it went.’’
She said the goal was to make parenting more enjoyable.
“I love the program and really want to help parents develop the skills needed to put the fun back into parenting.’’
Ms Blanchard also plans to run a workshop for parents of adolescents.
The 1- 2- 3 Magic and Emotion Coaching program starts this weekend with limited spots available. Contact Tracy at Learn. Grow. Flourish on 0417 251 707 to secure a spot. Cost for individual participants is $ 180 for all three sessions including a workbook and morning tea. Couples are $ 220.
PARENTING STRATEGIES: Tracy Blanchard, with baby Angus, is running workshops in August.