Get Parenting Information When Needed with Online Resources
Whether first child, middle child or youngest, each child responds differently with his or her own needs. That's why parenting seems to require "on the job" training says Nancy Clark, a family life program specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.
A new child brings new situations, Clark said. "Parents may joke that their first child was their 'experimental' child, because they were new to parenting. When the second child arrives, they're more at ease as parents, even though there always is something new to learn."
Nancy Clark recommends two research-based resources that can help answer parent's questions about rearing their children.
Just in Time Parenting can help the novice or experienced parent, Clark said. Over the past 25 years, Cooperative Extension faculty in land-grant universities across the country have developed and evaluated this parent-friendly series. The monthly newsletters are delivered "just in time" keyed to the age of the child. In addition, extension professionals from more than 30 land-grant universities are transforming these research-based, age-paced newsletters into a national interactive Internet resource on parenting.
"This newsletter series actually starts before a child is born and offers monthly newsletters until age five," Clark said. Sign up for the series at www.extension.iastate.edu/families/just-time-parenting.
"We all know that the parenting questions don't stop at age five," Clark continued. "Parenting 24/7 guides parents, as well as grandparents, of children up to age 18. It's a one-stop source of news, information, and advice on parenting and family life available online."
Parenting 24/7, at http://parenting247.org, provides feature articles with research-based information, video clips of parents and experts, breaking news and commentary, newsletters and recommendations for Web-based parenting resources.
"The site includes video clips of real parents on the challenges they face and the strategies they use to solve problems, as well as parent ratings and comments on feature articles," Clark said.
"Topics include childrearing challenges such as tantrums, toilet training, discipline and sleeping, and 'pep talks' to help you remember the joys of parenting and share success stories," Nancy Clark said. "You'll also learn strategies for fostering a strong family life, including coping with stress, family traditions and rituals, and if you have a partner, managing your relationship as a couple."
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