The Parenting Tree

‘The Parenting Tree’ was created during weekly sessions at a group for young parents in Lambeth. Parents looked at their lives based on a tree.

The roots are what they think has influenced their parenting and made them the people/parents they are today. They listed prison life, social services, drugs, alcohol, domestic violence, single parent family, close family network, grandparents and aunts.

The trunk of the tree contained their names.

The leaves represented how they want their children to be; words like clever, confident, kind, loving, caring, healthy and intelligent.

The branches indicate what they need to do as parents to help their children be the people they want them to be; words like patient, tolerant, supportive, give hugs and cuddles, listen and be responsible.

Finally the fruits bear the names of their children. The children decorated the fruits in a crèche activity.

"Myself and my colleague took a whole day to put the tree together which has taken up a whole wall at the Children’s Centre. It gave us reat pleasure to see the looks of the parents’ faces when they saw how it had come together. We also had members of staff some who have never communicated with us taking time out to come and have a look at our tree with admiration. The Head told us they'd like to get the school governors to see the tree and would also like to get the press to do a feature on it. That tree is the highlight of my year." Young Parent Practitioner

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