4-C to teach child care classes

By Olivia Willoughby

Community Coordinated Child Care (4-C) will offer parenting education classes starting Sept. 21.

Class sessions will cover six topics in order to help parents understand their children and raise them in a safe environment. 4-C hopes to create a bond with each family, said Esther Puckett, 4-C program director of Family Enrichment.

“Our purpose is to strengthen the family,” Puckett said. “We want all children nourished in a safe and nurturing environment so they can raise and nurture their own children.”

When the classes start, Puckett will get to know the parents and see what specific needs they have and take those into account.

The parent education classes will also try to provide a welcoming atmosphere for parents so they can share parenting techniques.

“Part of what we like is for parents to get together,” said 4-C parenting consultant Beth Purdom. “We want them to form relationships and friendships. Parenting is a really difficult thing, and it can get lonely a lot of the time.”

4-C also provides a well-trained staff, many of whom have obtained master’s degree in education or child development.

The parent education classes are not restricted to older parents, but also young students with children.

“I’d recommend the parenting classes to my friends because not many girls who get pregnant at a young age are educated and might not have lived in a supportive family environment,” said business administration major Erianna Powers. “I think these classes will help them understand the emotional baggage that comes with having a baby.”

A few lessons the parenting education classes have planned include: learning how to communicate with one’s child in a healthy way, addressing children’s self esteem and dealing with anger management.

All classes are free, and 4-C offers free child care.

“We always get positive feedback and have a really good time,” Puckett said. “The parents get to hear from other parents and share their techniques with each other. And some are very happy to have taken these classes.”

The sessions will meet from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. every Wednesday running until Oct. 26 at Gwendolyn Brooks Elementary School, 3225 Sangamon Rd. in DeKalb. The last day to register for classes is Sept. 19.