This E-learning parenting website is built on over 30 years of work with parents by Professor Michael E. Bernard, Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne; Emeritus Professor, College of Education, California State University, Long Beach. He has conducted an extensive study of what research conducted all over the world reveals about ways parents bring out the best in their children.
The website is also based on the first-hand knowledge and experience that Michael and Patricia Bernard, developers of this parenting website, have gained from raising their two children, Jonathon and Alexandra.
The purpose of this website is to bring to the attention of parents what has been learned about ways they can exert a positive influence on their children.
There are two main areas of direct parent influence that has been discovered.
First, parents can help their children develop positive attitudes (optimism, high frustration tolerance, self-acceptance) as well as social and emotional skills (resilience, confidence, persistence, organisation, getting along). Parents can teach their children they have choices in the way they think when faced with difficulty and challenge.
Second, there are different parenting styles and skills that have been uncovered that help parents exert a positive influence on the achievement and wellbeing of their children. For example, it is good to be firm in communicating to children expectations for behaviour and for their performance in school. It is also good for parents as their children grow older, to give them increased responsibilities and involve them in decision making.
What also has been discovered is that parents who love, support and greatly care for their children can engage in ineffective and negative parenting practices that they may be unaware of that interferes with the learning and wellbeing of their children. For example, we know that parents who hold and communicate unrealistic expectations for their childen’s academic achievement can create too much stress in their children leading to poor academic results. We know that parents who take too much responsibility for their children and who over-protect (sometimes called helicopter parents) can slow the rate of social and emotional maturity and independence of their children.
This website contains a rich source of information on what has been learned about how to be a positive and effective parent who helps their children develop the positive attitudes and social-emotional competence needed for success and happiness.
The You Can Do It! Parents program is part You Can Do It! Education, a school-home collaborative approach to educating children that has been incorporated in over 5,000 schools in Australia, New Zealand, England, Canada, United States, Singapore and Romania. Over 1,000,000 young people have participated in their schools in You Can Do It! Education programs while at school.