Friday, September 28, 2012
6:01 p.m.



The Spirited Child: Helping Parents Learn the Secrets to Effective Discipline

Master Series in the Field of Early Childhood and Infant Mental Health

About the Program

The Parenting Institute Professional Development and Continuing Education BrochureThe word that distinguishes spirited children from other children is more. They are normal children who are more intense, persistent, sensitive, perceptive and uncomfortable with change than other children. All children possess these characteristics, but spirited children possess them with a depth and range not available to other children. Spirited children are the super ball in a roomful of rubber balls. Other kids bounce three feet off the ground; every bounce for a spirited child hits the ceiling. It’s difficult to describe what it is like to be the parent of a spirited child. The answer keeps changing; it depends on the day, even the moment. How does one describe the experience of sliding from joy to exasperation in seconds, 10 times a day? How does one explain the sense at eight in the morning that this will be a good day or a dreadful one?

In this workshop, Mary Sheedy Kurcinka will help parent educators, teachers and clinicians become better equipped to help parents understand what makes a child spirited as well as develop techniques to help parent-identify and focus on their children’s strengths. Participants will learn approaches to helping parents develop effective discipline strategies for stopping challenging behaviors.

The instructor will also discuss tools to help a parent teach a child essential life skills, such as managing intensity, coping with change and working with others. How to plan for success and create an environment where the spirited child thrives will also be addressed in this training. Facilitating a parent’s development of an appreciation for the joy and excitement of life with the spirited child is an important aspect of this training.

About the Instructor

Mary Kurcinka, Ed.D., earned a master’s in family social science from the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s in early childhood education from Iowa State University. She is the former director of one of Minnesota’s largest early childhood family education programs and the founder of the Spirited Child and Kids, Parents and Power Struggles workshops. As director of she provides training nationally and internationally for families and professionals, including medical personnel, educators and social service providers who serve families. Licensed as a parent educator and early childhood teacher, she has pioneered efforts to bring topics such as temperament, neurobiology, the importance of sleep and emotion coaching into homes, schools, medical practices and businesses. Dr. Kurcinka is a best-selling author and internationally recognized lecturer and parent educator. Her books Raising Your Spirited Child; Raising Your Spirited Child Workbook; Kids, Parents, and Power Struggles and Sleepless in America: Is Your Child Misbehaving or Missing Sleep, have been translated into 10 languages. Books will be available throughout the day and a book signing will follow the program.