Parents are the most influential people in their children’s lives. Although sometimes challenging, one’s role as a parent can be very rewarding and fulfilling as they guide and encourage their children to develop into caring, confident, respectful, responsible and healthy individuals. Beginning April 2, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, Dallas County will be offering Great Beginnings for Families in both English and Spanish. In this five-week skills building program the following topics will be covered: positive discipline and guidance, helping children resolve conflict, basic principles of child development, handling uncomfortable emotions and feelings and encouraging learning through play.

“Our goal is to help parents realize the strengths they already have along with gaining some new knowledge, skills and techniques to assist them in providing and building a solid foundation to raise awesome children and create a happy, healthy family,” said Lisa Mickelson, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach educator and Great Beginnings facilitator. “Parents will come away from this course with more confidence in their abilities as parents and reduce behavior problems along with encouraging and supporting their children as they grow.”

Great Beginnings for Families will take place on Mondays, April 2 to April 30 from 10:30 a.m. until noon at the Perry First United Methodist Church, 1100 3rd St. Perry, IA. There is no cost to attend and free childcare will also be provided. Families can register by calling (515) 993-4281 or contacting Lisa Mickelson at for the English session or Rosa Gonzalez at (515) 490-2298, for the Spanish session.