Children’s Challenging Behaviors
Children’s Challenging Behaviors is a six-hour workshop for parents of children and youth with mental health needs. In this workshop, a trained and experienced parent provides information to help parents understand typical behaviors versus challenging behaviors that require intervention. Parents learn when and how to seek help, develop parenting strategies, learn the ins and outs of special education and other educational supports, and discover community resources available to families and youth.
With this class, you’ll find out that you’re not alone. Learning to cope with your child’s mental health condition is a journey, and there is hope. The group setting of Children’s Challenging Behaviors provides mutual support and shared positive impact—you can experience compassion and reinforcement from people who understand your situation. You also can help others with your own experience.
Children’s Challenging Behaviors was created to educate and support families who have a child diagnosed with a mental health condition and/or who has challenging behaviors. This comprehensive training focuses on developing skills to manage challenging behavior, and learning information and skills to advocate for a child in the educational, medical, social service, and insurance settings. A plan of action that includes partnerships between home, school and community will also be developed in this workshop.
The goals of this workshop are that parents will:
- Gain an understanding of typical challenging childhood behavior and what to look for in behavior that merits a closer look
- Gain an understanding of mental wellness and mental health conditions in children and develop strategies to support your child/children
- Learn about mental health conditions and how they may affect a child’s behavior and school performance
- Learn strategies to support a child with challenging behaviors and/or a mental health disorder
- Learn information to overcome stigma and myths that are sometimes associated with mental health conditions and challenging behaviors
- Learn advocacy skills
- Learn accurate information about special education as it relates to the education of children with challenging behaviors or a mental health condition
- Learn about community supports
Who Leads the Program
A Children’s Challenging Behaviors teacher is a trained NAMI leader. They play an important role in ensuring that all participants feel welcomed and supported. Children’s Challenging Behaviors teachers are uniquely qualified to lead a class because they too are parents who have a child or youth with mental health needs. Teachers therefore can empathize with and encourage those who are just beginning, or continuing their journey. A Children’s Challenging Behaviors teacher ensures that the class achieves the educational objectives.
What People are Saying about the Program
“There’s so much great information. I wish I had access to it years ago.”
How to Find the Program in Your Community
The following affiliates currently offer this program.
- NAMI Central Virginia
- NAMI Northern Shenandoah Valley
- NAMI Prince William
- NAMI Roanoke
- NAMI Virginia Beach
For more information, contact Sarah Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 804-285-8264 x203. If your affiliate is not listed, please contact us about other possible resources.
How to Give Back
Children’s Challenging Behaviors teachers are volunteers who become certified by attending and graduating from a 2 day training. The training is designed for teachers to learn and practice specific skills that will guarantee a meaningful and informative educational experience for all participants. After the training, certified teachers know how to deliver class content; encourage collective thought; and direct energy towards productive outcomes. Teachers make use of a class manual and facilitations skills to ensure participants experiences a safe learning environment. Teacher trainees are required to go through an application and screening process before being approved to attend a training event. For more information on how to get started, please contact your local affiliate.