Playfully Present Parenting: Creating Compassionate and Connected Families


Specialised Courses for Parents and Carers

Playfully Present Parenting:

Creating Compassionate and Connected Families 

4 Part Online Training Course                          Course Fee: €150 

Course Dates: Monday September 6th, 13th, 20th & 27th

 Session Times: 7:30pm-9pm

This new and innovative course runs over four weekly sessions and will explore parenting, in all its glory and all its challenges!

It has been designed with busy parents in mind and aims to empower and support parents to:

  • Understand children’s behaviour as developmentally appropriate communication.
  • Gently and compassionately consider self-care practices and tap into our resources, strengths, creativity and playfulness as parents.
  • Make having fun and enjoying each other’s company a central component in the parent-child relationship.
  • Try out new ways of parenting to support children’s social, emotional and overall well-being.
  • Help children deal with the inevitable struggles and challenges that are part of growing up.
  • Make use of connected and respectful discipline strategies to bring about positive change.

Course content is founded on the latest thinking in child-centred parenting practice and neuroscience (but don’t worry, we will be keeping the science bits simple and accessible!!) The course will gently introduce the relevant key theory and provide simple and effective communication techniques that can be tried out at your own pace in between sessions. Sessions are short in duration but will be packed full of helpful content, tips and recommended strategies. Course material will be covered in ways that will be beneficial to parents of children of all ages.

Session Content Includes:

  1. “You cannot pour from an empty cup”- compassionately re-examining our self-care Looking at how our self-care impacts our parenting. Exploring creative ways to expand our capacity as parents.
  2. It’s all about connection! Using play and playfulness to build and strengthen parent child relationships. Re- connecting with the power of play and tapping into our own creativity and resourcefulness as parents!
  3. Feelings are for feeling– nurturing your child’s self-esteem and emotional well- being. Looking at what children need to thrive and develop resiliency. Communicating understanding and compassion to our children. Developing new and more effective communication skills as parents.
  4. Taking a new look at discipline– looking at the critical importance of parental modelling and introducing new skills for limit setting. Managing difficulties in child centred and respectful ways with new understanding around what behaviour seeks to communicate. Utilising playful ways to engage more cooperation in your home.

Ethically it is not possible or appropriate to answer specific or detailed queries about children and their families in an online forum. Please note that parents with specific concerns will be advised to seek individualised consultation with a suitably qualified professional.

Participants are required to have the following tools.

Space and technology:

  • Sound cancelling headset or confidential room to participate in
  • A computer or other suitable device (e.g. i pad), ideally, but not essentially, with built in (or external) microphone, speaker and camera.
  • Uninterrupted internet connection

Before the training course, participants will receive handouts that they can print to use in the training. All participants will receive a Certificate of Completion.

Cathy O’Donoghue
Qualifications:M.I.A.P.T.P, MA Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy and Play Therapy, B.Ed

Cathy is an experienced and accredited psychotherapist with a specialisation in Play Therapy. She has worked as a teacher, trainer, workshop facilitator and psychotherapist in a variety of settings. Cathy joined the therapeutic team of CARI in 2014 where she worked in a systemic manner with children, adolescents, parents and siblings providing specialised child centred psychotherapy and support to families who have been affected by CSA and with children who engage in harmful sexual behaviours. Cathy now (since early 2018) maintains a full-time, busy private practice, where she works with children and adolescents presenting with a wide range of issues including anxiety, emotional regulation difficulties, developmental delays, learning and attentional difficulties, grief, parental separation, bullying and peer difficulties as well as more complex issues such as attachment difficulties and children who have experienced abuse and trauma. Cathy works from an integrative, person centred perspective and endeavours to build strong working relationships with parents/carers using creative approaches to empower parents towards greater awareness and presence in their parenting. Cathy is trained in Filial Therapy and Circle of Security Parent group facilitation. Cathy has also designed and delivered trainings and workshops for parents, teachers and other professionals on the power of play and unconditional positive regard when relating to and working with children. Cathy teaches on our MA Programme.

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