The Incredible Years: Parents and Children Training Series was designed as
prevention/intervention programs for parents and teachers of children ages 3-12 years.
Short term objectives are to strengthen parent and teacher competencies by training parents in positive
communication and child-directed play skills, consistent and clear limit setting, nonviolent
discipline strategies. Additional subjects are: how to teach children to problem solve, manage anger
and promote positive parent-teacher partnership and collaboration. The objectives for the
children are to strengthen social and academic competence, reduce behavior problems, and increase positive
interactions with peers, teachers and parents.
The Incredible Years, BASIC Parents Training Program is offered to parents in groups to
foster support, problem-solving and self-management. Groups meet for approximately 11-14
weeks to complete the curriculum (two hours once a week). The BASIC program covers topics such as:
Play, Helping Children Learn, The Value of Praise and Encouragement, The Use of Incentives to
Motivate Children, Effective Limit Setting, and Handling Misbehavior. There are two versions of this
BASIC program, one for young children (2 to 7 years) and one for early school-age children (ages 5
to 12 years). The BASIC program can be supplemented by another training series called
Supporting Your Child's Education. This program covers topics such as: Promoting Children's Self
Confidence, Fostering Good Learning Habits, Participating in Homework and Using Parent
Conferences to Advocate for Your Child. Trained leaders show groups of parents the real-life
videotape situations of parents and children and encourage discussion and problem-solving. The
Advanced Parent Training Program takes an additional 14 sessions and covers topics such as:
Effective Communication, Anger Management, Problem Solving and Family Meetings and Ways to
Give and Get Support.
The Child Training Program, known as the "Dinosaur Social Skills and Problem-Solving
Curriculum" dovetails with the parent training program and takes 22 weeks to complete. The program covers
topics such as Learning Rules, Empathy Training, Problem-Solving, Anger Management, How to Be
Friendly, How to Talk to Others, and How to Be Successful in School. The tapes are narrated by
child-size puppets making use of fantasy, role play and cooperative activities to illustrate concepts.
The Teacher Training Program can be conducted in 28 hours-- which may be offered as full day
workshops or for shorter periods on a weekly basis. The topics cover: The Importance of Teacher
Attention, Praise and Encouragement, Motivating Students through Incentives, Preventing Problems,
Decreasing Inappropriate Behavior in the Classroom, Building Positive Relationships with Difficult
Children, and how to teach social skills and problem solving in the classroom.
The Incredible Years Parent, Child, and Teacher Training Programs have been researched and
extensively field tested in randomized trials over the past 18 years with over 1000 families with young
children who have aggressive behavior problems. The BASIC Parent Training Program has also
been evaluated with over 700 high risk Head Start families as a prevention program. The Teacher
Training Program has been evaluated in two independent, randomized trials with head start teachers
as well as in studies with teachers of students in grades Kindergarten through grade three. Results
indicate that parents and teachers were able to significantly reduce children's problem behaviors and
increase their social competence and academic engagement. (References available from program
Training in these programs leads to certification as a group leader. Therapeutic group process
emphasizes cultural sensitivity and strategies such as collaboration, empowerment, re-framing,
self-management, ways to give and get support, changing negative self-talk and
The parent groups can be led by one certified leader, although a co-leader is recommended.
Certification is valued for several reasons including
program referral for possible employment as a leader and access to program updates and advanced
training. Details of certification may be obtained from the program developer.
There are separate leader manuals, parent, teacher and child books and posters for each of the three
types of training curriculum. Also included with the training materials are multiple videotapes with
over 150 vignettes to facilitate group discussions, tear-off pads of weekly take-home assignments,
weekly refrigerator notes and magnets. Audiotapes of the parent book are available and the BASIC
Program is available in Spanish. The Dinosaur curriculum includes feeling spinning wheels, posters,
43 laminated cue cards, stickers, books for children and life size puppets. Costs vary depending on
curriculum chosen and are priced separately according to individual components as well as the
complete set of materials. Brochures and price lists are available upon request.
It is considered essential to be able to offer transportation, day care and dinners, particularly when
working with low-income families. Programs need to be offered at a variety of times of day and
evening especially in order to accommodate parent work schedules.
Each of the training workshops (for teacher, parent or child programs) typically lasts three days.
One training workshop can be offered to 25-30 participants. One certified trainer can conduct the
training workshop although a second trainer is optimal if funds permit. Fees for workshops are
negotiated according to number of days of training and whether training includes one or more of the
curriculum. Travel costs are a separate charge from the trainer daily consultant fee.