Families, communities, and nations when parents develop and use good parenting skills. Ideally, every young adult should take a parenting class because the skills learned in such a class can help in other relationships. Specifically, every couple should learn good parenting skills before their first child is born. However, it is never too late to become a better parent, and good parenting includes forever learning. It is impossible for mere mortals to become perfect parents.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints published a manual for parents, one that is used in any parenting class taught by Church leaders. The title of the course is Strengthening the Family – Resource Guide for Parents. You can purchase a copy of the manual at this site for $4.40.
The parenting course consists of nine sessions with the lessons based on principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The lessons are as follow:
1. Parenting Principles and Practices
2. Understanding Child Development
3. Communicating with Love
4. Nurturing Children
5. Fostering Confidence
6. Overcoming Anger
7. Resolving Conflict
8. Teaching Responsible Behavior
9. Applying Consequences
A common practice that takes place during most of the sessions is the skill of role playing. This skill is usually difficult for parents to learn, but it is useful in preparing children to face difficult situations. If a child has acted out a certain scenario with a parent – such as stranger danger or refusing drugs or helping a friend overcome a tendency to harm themselves – it will be easier for a child or teenager to know what to do when they face the situation in real life. This site has a helpful video in the importance of role playing.
The role of a parent is an important one in the eyes of God, and parents will be held accountable by God for their parenting experience. A parent is successful as long as she or he continues to love and care for their child – regardless of the success of the child. Numerous prophets have taught that parents fail only when they stop trying to help their child. When parents learn and practice good parenting skills, they can strengthen their family, community, and nation.