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Parenting Today’s Children – Classes for Parents

There is no other job in the world that is as frustrating and difficult as parenting today’s children. Likewise, there is no other job in the world that has such wonderful rewards!

As children grow through the “ages and stages,” each developmental stage presents new challenges. Parenting classes can help parents understand their child’s behavior and provide the correct parenting style for their child in each stage.

The Hillsborough County Extension Service offers parenting classes. This three-week, six-lesson series covers:

  1. A Balanced Parenting Style
  2. Enhancing Your Child’s Self-Esteem
  3. Effective Discipline
  4. What Kids Need to Succeed in Today’s World
  5. Improving Family Communication
  6. Stress Management for Parents

The cost of the course is $20 and includes a court-approved parenting certificate. For more information, contact Diana Converse at converse@ufl.edu or 813-744-5519 x54140. Find the class schedule here: http://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/hillsborough/work-and-life/family-life/

  • Start at the end and work backwards 

What kind of people do you hope your children become? What qualities do you want them to have as adults? Respectful, caring, confident, self-disciplined, independent, kind, and successful? This is the type of human being we hope to be sharing the world with in ten or fifteen years.

As we parent, it can be helpful to remember our desired end product. It can be tempting during conflicts with our child to take  easy way out and give in to a child’s tantrums so that everyone has a happy evening. But if our goal is to nurture a child to be a kind, caring, responsible person. This means enforcing loving limits and consequences to allows children to practice self-control skills.

Painting a picture of the future not only reminds us of what our goal is, but also what it is not. The goal is not to win all (inevitable) power struggles. The goal is not to show our child who the boss is. Nor is our goal  to break their spirit.

Our goal is to raise children who have the capacity to make responsible and caring choices. Laying out clear and appropriate choices and consequences helps kids consider the impacts of all of their actions and to ultimately develop good decision-making skills on their own.

Starting with our vision of our future children won’t solve all of our parenting struggles, but it can certainly give us some perspective when the going gets rough.