Parent Workshop Wrap-Up: Creating a Warm and Respectful Parent-Child Relationship Through the “Éducoeur Method”

We would like to thank our parents for attending last night’s workshop on “Making Discipline as Simple as Child’s Play.”  It was a great session and an opportunity for parents to ask questions and to learn about the “Éducoeur method” (French only Website).

We would like to thank Monique Dion, Executive Director of the Partenaires du secteur Aylmer, for co-hosting this workshop with Connexions.  And a thank you to our guest speaker, Brigitte Racine, author with the Ste-Justine University Hospital’s Editions, nurse and international speaker- thank you Brigitte!

The evening began with a general overview of Brigitte’s “Éducoeur” approach, which she explained, is “an approach that gives happiness!”

Unlike traditional parenting approaches that use punishment and rewards as a strategy for modifying behaviour in children, the “Éducoeur method” offers a positive approach to discipline that nurtures the parent-child relationship, builds trust and mutual respect, and fosters cooperation, integrity and self-discipline on the part of the child.

The first step, Brigitte explains, is to meet the basic affective needs of your child by increasing the amount of quality time that you spend with them in order to rebuild a trusting and warm connection.  One positive way to do this is by putting aside 20 minutes, three times week, and to invest one-on-one, quality time with your child to truly listen, play, laugh and reconnect.  In this 20 minutes, it is important to let your child control the play and take the lead while you take the time to engage with them, to join them in their world and to do the things that they enjoy doing in order to increase eye contact, smiles, warmth and laughter, hugs and shows of affection.  This is also an opportunity to build-up your child and to tell them what you love and cherish most about them.

Once you have built a strong and solid bond with your child, you can better meet their needs and face the more challenging aspects of parenting.  According to the “Éducoeur method,” when there is a power struggle between the parent and child, it is important for the parent to:

  • be aware of what they are modelling through their responses (such as not repeating oneself, but instead demonstrating and even helping the child to do as asked in a positive manner);
  • understand and meet the underlying needs that may be driving the behaviour of the child (and to relate and respond primarily to the feelings beneath the behaviour, while understanding that the child may be exhausted, hungry or even overstimulated);
  • teach the child skills to better understand their own feelings and to give them the words they need to help them express their emotions (thereby increase their emotional literacy);
  • teach the child the importance of repairing “damage” they have caused to a friend, sibling or loved one by first asking them to apologize and then to do a good deed for the person they have hurt (by sharing a special toy or spending some special time with the sibling or friend to repair the hurt and rebuild the relationship in a positive way)
  • connect with the child by creating a warm, caring and positive relationship that builds the child’s self-esteem and teaches them self-control, self-discipline, autonomy and respect.

Visit Brigitte Racine’s Website for more information about her Éducoeur method”  (French only Website).