Back to Learning Catalog




The process of parenting is more than just having a child and making sure they eat, sleep and get to school on time. Learn what to prepare for, what to expect, and what vital steps a parent can take to create the best environment and life for their child. Parenting roles and responsibilities; nurturing and protective environments for children; positive parenting strategies and effective communication in parent/child relationships are some of the topics covered in this course.

Major Topics and Concepts

  • Discuss what it means to be a parent.
  • Understand the roles and responsibilities of being a parent.
  • Analyze the costs and rewards of parenthood.
  • Compare different parenting philosophies.
  • Describe the qualities that make a person a good candidate for parenthood.
  • Define self-esteem.
  • List characteristics of a person with high self-esteem and a person with low self-esteem.
  • Understand the self-esteem needs of children at different stages of development.
  • Identify factors that raise and diminish a person’s self-esteem.
  • Understand ways in which parents influence a child’s self-esteem.
  • Define “protective environment” and “nurturing environment.”
  • Discuss the kinds of nurturing and support children need at different ages.
  • Identify abuse and other potential impediments to creating a nurturing environment.
  • Describe strategies for nurturing special needs children.
  • Understand how to choose appropriate childcare.
  • Understand what positive parenting means.
  • Define punishment, discipline, and guidance.
  • Discuss how positive parenting can be used with children of different ages.
  • Understand the use of consequences in positive parenting.
  • Know the resources available to parents and where to find them.
  • Discuss communication and what makes communication effective.
  • Describe the differences between negative and positive communication.
  • Consider how to talk with children about their mistakes through positive communication.
  • Discuss some of the social issues that affect families.
  • Consider how parents can talk to their children about difficult issues.
  • Discuss family composition and some factors that influence this aspect of family life.
  • Examine the different types of families.
  • Discuss the history of Western families and how family practices have changed over time.
  • Consider multicultural families and the advantages and challenges that they face.
  • Discuss how parents can help their families adapt to a new culture or area.
  • Learn about youth organizations and their benefits.
  • Find examples of youth organizations and their purposes.
  • Discuss the benefits of volunteering with the community.
  • Define personal development and growth.
  • Examine how parents can help children with personal development.
  • Learn more about brain development in children.
  • Discuss some ways that parents can encourage brain development.
  • Examine how parents can use technology.
  • Learn about some of the advances in assistive technology and devices.
  • Consider the benefits of assistive technology.

Credits .5


  • Leadership and Organizational Skills
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of leadership and organizational skills by explaining types of youth organizations, describing the impact of volunteering on a child’s personal growth, and summarizing the parent’s role in a child’s personal development.
  • Parent-Child Relationships
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of parent-child relationships by explaining strategies to build positive relationships and describing tips for communicating social issues to children.
  • Positive Parenting
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of positive parenting by describing parenting methods, explaining age-appropriate behaviors, and summarizing community resources that support families.
  • Self-Esteem and Child Development
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of self-esteem and child development by explaining the concept of self-esteem, describing a parent’s role in fostering a child’s self-esteem, and explaining influences on a child’s self-esteem.
  • World of Parenting
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of the world of parenting by describing misconceptions about parenting, explaining considerations when deciding to become a parent, and summarizing the responsibilities of parents.
  • Parenting and Science
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of parenting and science by explaining brain development in children, describing technology’s effect on parenting, and summarizing the benefits of assistive technology.
  • Family Diversity
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of family diversity by describing types of families, explaining effects of family diversity, and describing strategies for adjusting to a new culture.
  • Environments for Children
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of environments for children by describing elements of a nurturing environment, summarizing types of child abuse, and explaining considerations for nurturing environments for children.



Attend a virtual open house

We offer regular online open house webinars where VLACS staff members provide parents and students with an overview of our programs and answer questions about online learning.