Family Time: PAIIR plays a winning hand for your toddler
Make the most of the new year with a PAIIR class. Open to parents with children ages birth to kindergarten enrollment, PAIIR is Rochester Public Schools’ Early Childhood Family Education program and offers morning, afternoon, and evening parent/child, parent-only, and online classes.
“Our winter semester classes begin the week of Jan. 7,” said Amy Ward, RPS early childhood coordinator. “Our catalog and registration are available online or you can stop by our office. If you aren’t sure what class to choose, give us a call or stop in. We love to help families that are new to PAIIR navigate the options.”
Among those options are classes that run weekly, the same day, same time all semester long: Age Group Classes (STEM for 3- to 5-year-olds, Toddler/Twos, Baby and Me) as well as Focus Classes that concentrate on the same topic all semester (Conscious Discipline, Parenting a Child with Spirited or Challenging Behaviors, Whole Brain Child).
“The neat thing with these classes is that it brings together parents who have something in common. Maybe their children are the same age or they are going through a similar challenge,” said Ward. “Parenting is all about navigating. It’s good to be do it with peers who have a similar circumstance.”
Other PAIIR classes are offered online once a semester (Bedtime Battles, Encouraging “Good” Behavior), in person a couple of times a semester (Silly Senses, Music Makers, Hanging Loose with Dr. Seuss), on the weekends (Cabin Fever Fun, Grandma/Grandpa and Me, Breakfast and Books), or on a come-as-you-can basis.
“We offer TGIF (Those Great Informational Fridays) every semester because it offers week-to-week registration,” said Ward, noting that parents can start registering for this Friday’s class as early as Monday of that week. “In the world of toddlers and preschoolers it can be difficult to commit to six or eight weeks in a row. TGIF is a great way for new families to check out PAIIR or to network with other families.”
All PAIIR classes are taught by licensed parent and licensed early childhood teachers. This includes PAIIR’s monthly parent support groups.
“We offer two support groups: Parenting a Child with Special Needs and Single Parent Support Group,” said Ward. “As parents, we’re all on our own unique path, but we’re all in this together. The support groups help you find your village by bringing together parents who share similar life circumstances. The support groups help bring parents together over an immediate need, but what we find is that they often also help build lifelong friendships.”
Families can register for PAIIR classes online, by phone, or in person. PAIIR offers a sliding fee scale. No Rochester family will be denied participation due to the inability to pay.