Genni and her son, Owen, who is now 5, joined a Parents as Teachers program when he was 2 months old. Genni’s parent educator, Darlene, played a large role in keeping Owen on track and making sure he hit his milestones on time. “My parent educator suggested activities and toys that would encourage him to reach his milestones,” Genni said, “They were fun and educational activities that could be made with items around the house.”
She feels Darlene and the Parents as Teachers program gave her the confidence that she needed to be a true parent. “It has made me more confident by reassuring me and steering me in the right direction. Usually my parent educator’s answers to my questions were the same as my gut feelings,” she laughs now. “It made me realize that my instincts were correct and made me feel more confident in my own ability to parent.”
Genni also feels that Darlene saved her family money. “With Parents as Teachers, if I had a question and knew I had a meeting with my parent educator scheduled, I felt like I could wait and ask her about minor things.” Genni called on both her parent educator and family physician. She went to her parent educator when she had parenting and minor health concerns about her child, and to her family physician with more serious issues. The balance of the two created a sense of security and confidence for Genni as a parent.
Genni also feels Parents as Teachers helped prepare Owen for school. “I know that a child who hits his or her milestones on time advances in all areas more quickly. My son will start kindergarten tomorrow, but can already read and write words by sounding them out. In math, he can add, subtract, and do simple multiplication. There is no doubt that Parents as Teachers and my parent educator had a hand in that. If I hadn't known where to start with him as a baby, he would not be where he is today.” Parents as Teachers has helped prepare Owen both emotionally and intellectually for the educational path to come.