One of the most difficult parts of counseling is finding or developing the educational tools that will be most effective for the setting and the audience you are working with. Although many organizations have already designed a curriculum, you may find yourself working with resources and tools that don't quite match or need to be expanded. Always take a look at what's already out there before diving into reinvention.
There are great resources available for free from trusted organizations around the world, as well as localized resources that can work on their own or inspire you:
As with other teaching opportunities, having multiple paths for each key point helps reach more learners and build retention. For example, when I teach parents about normal bowel movements, I aim to provide them with several ways to remember what we are discussing - verbally, in writing, and visually in a chart like this:
Ontario Health Nexus / Best Start: https://resources.beststart.org/product/b02e-signs-feeding-going-well/
If I teach in person, I demonstrate the weight of a typical diaper using water as well as the contents. While these hands-on activities require more time and preparation, they are particularly effective in helping parents retain the information being taught.
As in other situations, the time we devote to preparing our advice, both time and content, signals to our clients the importance of the information provided. We know breastfeeding is worth it - let's make sure we share it through our place during the busy prenatal period.
Michelle Pensa Branco MPH IBCLC
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Last Updated: September 2018