I felt that it would be beneficial for you and the programme for me to give a more in depth evaluation. This is something I really wanted to do.
I have three children aged 7, 5 and 1. I am a full time mama and kaitiaki (caregiver) of my whanau and household. My partner works full time and is sometimes stationed in Christchurch for work.
We are very fortunate to have the unconditional love and support of my mother, who attended this course with me. We signed up for the Incredible Years programme as recommended by my son’s (age 5) early childhood educator.
We have had difficulty in dealing with my son’s behaviour since he was two years old and while we have tried many strategies, it felt inadequate in dealing with his behaviour.
I now know that we lacked the skills and strategies, as well as the understanding, to parent effectively and manage undesirable behaviour. Our life has changed substantially since starting IYs this year, 2013.
I am so happy and grateful for all the learning, readings, tools and relationships that have made this possible.
I am a primary school teacher and although we have strategies for classroom behaviour management, this was not always applicable to parenting.
My mother and I have learnt so much and grown so much in the past few months. It is my opinion that all parents, regardless of their children’s temperament and character, should attend IYs as this would greatly benefit all parents and children and grow a strong community and a strong generation. The children would then have great examples (models) of good/effective parenting that they can imitate as/when they become parents, thus a cycle would be created. The effects would be far reaching. I feel luck that my children have benefited in this way.
Now to the evaluations –
Evaluation of learning:
The folders, readings/handouts were great ways of consolidating the learning of the lesson and followed on well from each class. It was great to read over topics that were really important to me and focus on my goals for each week. The fridge magnets, charts etc were great tools for helping me to remember what I was doing and what I could be doing as the week went by and I was involved in daily family life.
It was awesome to see examples of good and not so good parenting to visualise what it could look like and was a great way to encourage discussions on the topic.
I feel that one of the most helpful components of the course was the group discussions. It was awesome to hear of other parents’ situations, ideas etc and I think the main reason I loved it was because I felt that I was not alone and there were other people like me, or even had worse times or weeks than me. The connection with other parents like me, role modelling and ‘acting out’ scenarios all benefited me greatly.
I loved that each lesson was structured, well prepared, timed, vignettes, modelling, discussions, follow up reading and resources all created a great learning environment that fostered development and ‘togetherness’.
Evaluation of teaching:
The group leaders are a couple of awesome, intelligent, professional and beautiful individuals. I felt that they worked really well as a team, supporting each other and facilitating our learning.
They are extremely ‘on to it’ and know what they’re doing. They both were very good at getting people to share, keeping us on track and answering all our questions.
Mum and I love you both very much and wish you well in the future. You are both in our prayers.
I felt that the way the lessons/course was structured utilised the time well and that they catered for all learning styles using a variety of approaches to learning.
Sometimes learning material such as handouts and homework was mixed up. It would perhaps be a good idea to have a folder prepared with all the materials in it as a reference for each lesson.
Although the TV and sound were fine (adequate) it could be better with a bigger TV or screen for those with poor eyesight.
The food was always ready/prepared, delicious and yummy. It was also easy to prepare dinner for the children and not have to worry about feeding ourselves. Kai time was also a great time to interact with other parents and have a ‘brain’ break.
I hope that this is helpful feedback/evaluation and I look forward to catching up with everyone again.
I am so happy in my life, my children are thriving and everything’s all good.
Aroha tino nui