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Parent Effectiveness Training

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Online or Face to Face courses are now available for your choice.

What is Parent Effectiveness Training?

Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.) is based on a philosophy of respect for everyone’s feelings and needs in the family or teacher/ child relationships.  Meeting children’s emotional needs is vital for raising happy, resilient, secure kids and our needs as parents, carers and educators are important too!

P.E.T. is unique in that it is not focused on simply trying to change children’s behaviours.  Children’s behaviour is usually driven by underlying feelings and needs. Many parenting and teacher education courses focus on trying to change children’s behaviour and therefore miss the underlying causes.  This often results in change that is short-lived and doesn’t help children develop important social and emotional skills.

P.E.T. offers parents, educators and carers highly practical tools to raise emotionally intelligent children, without the reliance on coercive behaviour management such as punishments, rewards, threats, bribes or time outs.

This results in warmer, more connected relationships, and kids who are happier, more co-operative, responsible and self-disciplined. This also makes parenting, teaching or caring easier and more enjoyable!

Who does P.E.T. work for?

P.E.T. skills are equally effective for parents, educators or carers with children of all ages; for step-parents, single parents, foster parents, parents of different cultural backgrounds, grandparents, educators and carers.

Designed to teach healthy communication skills to parents, educators or carers, P.E.T. is a 24 hour course, which usually comprises of 8 x 3hour sessions. The P.E.T. program was developed by award-winning, psychologist Dr Thomas Gordon  60 years ago after extensive research. The course is now taught by accredited instructors worldwide.

P.E.T. can show you how to:

  • Listen so children will feel understood (ACTIVE LISTENING)
  • Grow your connection with your children (PREVENTIVE & RELATIONSHIP SKILLS)
  • Talk so children will understand and help you (I-MESSAGES)
  • Resolve conflict so nobody loses (THE NO-LOSE METHOD)
  • Avoid ineffective communication (COMMUNICATION ROADBLOCKS)
  • Deal constructively with values collisions (CONSULTING SKILLS)

Benefits to families or educators and children in classrooms:

  • Less stress and anxiety
  • Better able to deal with anger and strong emotions
  • Warmer more satisfying relationships
  • Children become self-disciplined, resilient and solve own problems
  • Day-to-day issues are resolved respectfully eg bedtime, chores, homework, going to school, classroom routines, use of social media
  • Children talk more openly to parents or educators
  • Fewer family or classroom conflicts
  • Children more open to parent or educators ideas and their values
  • Parents or educators can comfortably express their own concerns and unmet needs related to children’s behaviour.

Duration: 3 hour sessions offered over an 8 week period (24 hours in total).

Classes: Choice of online or face to face courses are now available. As a skills based program, you will practice your learning within your class to gain confidence in using them in your everyday life or unique situation. Classes are interactive and experiential.

Course Outline: Parent Effectiveness Training

Session 1: Understanding Parent Effectiveness

  • Current issues and problems parents face & how the Gordon Model works
  • Observing and understanding children’s behaviours (avoiding judgement)
  • Factors that affect how parents view children’s behaviour that help or hinder
  • Acceptable & unacceptable behaviours – understanding needs
  • Problem ownership – who owns the problem?
  • Setting personal goals

Session 2: Learning the Helping Skills

  • When children have problems – cues and clues
  • Avoiding roadblocks
  • Helping skills when children have unmet needs
  • Passive & Active Listening

Session 3: Active Listening

  • Conditions for Active Listening
  • Practising Active Listening
  • Supporting children to solve their own problems

Session 4: Preventing Problems & Conflicts

  • Communicating honestly with children
  • Expressing appreciation to children rather than ineffective praise
  • Preventing conflicts
  • Modifying the environment to prevent conflicts
  • Connecting through quality one to one time

Session 5: Confronting Unacceptable Behaviours

  • Avoiding ineffective confrontation when parents have unmet needs
  • Effective confrontation – I-Messages
  • Handling resistance
  • Practising effective confrontation & handling resistance (real life examples)

Session 6: Resolving Conflict

  • Understanding conflicts of unmet needs
  • Ineffective ways of resolving conflicts – pitfalls of using power
  • The No-Lose Method (Method III problem solving)
  • Separating needs from solutions

Session 7: Applying & Practising Method III

  • Practising Method III (real life examples)
  • Mediating conflicts between children (involving children in problem solving)

Session 8: Resolving Values Collisions  

  • Understanding values collisions
  • Options for resolving Values Collisions
  • Risks of use of power
  • Problem solving values related behaviour
  • Effective consulting with children
  • The importance of role modelling
  • Modifying self & the importance of self-reflection.

“When I first started P.E.T. I was struggling with my 2 little kids – a girl aged 3 and a boy aged 1.5. There was lots of shouting by all family members in the house and it was achieving nothing. I was desperate to try something new and reign back control of my life.
I didn’t really think it would work on my very young kids, but time and time again, it has. I’m so glad that I did this course when they were so young as it gives me lots of time to practice! I’ve become a much calmer mummy around my kids as I now know how to handle problematic situations. Our household now talks about problems instead of bottling them up and is a much more loving family unit. I’ve also tried the skills on my husband and friends and the difference in how conversations and situations have evolved is unbelievable. With P.E.T. both parties end up happy, a win-win situation for everyone!”

- Ginny Malbon - mother of two pre-schoolers
Loving Family | About ETIA

About ETIA

The Effectiveness Training Institute of Australia (ETIA) Ltd is a not-for-profit, community based organisation that is dedicated to making courses in communication and conflict resolution skills available and accessible to all people in Australia.

ETIA’s mission is to provide individuals with effective communication and conflict resolution skills to build connected, harmonious relationships.

Our inspiration and programs come from the late Dr Thomas Gordon who is the author and founder of Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.) program and Gordon Training International (GTI).

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