University offers free community parenting classes

March 2, 2012

Writer: Jessica McIntyre

Brigham Young University-Idaho is offering free parenting courses for students and community members, Wednesday and Thursday nights, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. through March 22.

All community members are welcome to attend and will receive a copy of Dr. John Gottman's book Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child to use during the course. BYU-Idaho students teach the class, based on Dr. Gottman's research.

"The students aren't there to be the experts, but merely to help parents understand the principals," said Tim Rarick, faculty member with the Department of Home and Family. "The book we use teaches principles that parents sometimes overlook, especially when it comes to their child's emotions."

Some of the principles taught are recognizing and empathizing with your child's emotions, avoiding criticism, and a variety of other parenting strategies.

"Being able to help parents in the community is extremely beneficial to my education," said Shannon Thomas, a senior helping teach the course. "I love it when I have said something and I see the parents nod in agreement and then implement it in their families. I truly feel accomplished."