Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Sample Class Syllabus

An Informed Childbirth

I strive to meet your needs by tailoring each class to suit the individuals I am serving. We will engage in a lot of discussion. I want to meet you where you are! I recognize that this is a big event in a couple's life!

This is a sample 6 week class, covering a full selection of topics. If you need a more streamlined version, you may choose the topics most important to you from this list. I will put together a custom, 3-6 week class from your chosen topics (and any others I feel are foundational).

Class One- Birth Today
Birth in the media and cross-cultural influences
Technocratic and Holistic models of birth
Safety of birth
Consumerism (what can we, as health care consumers, do?)
The current state of birth in North America/ the rising cesarean rate and cesarean birth prevention

Class Two- Pregnancy: Growth and Decision-Making
Birth options and decision-making (place of birth, care provider, labor support, natural birth vs. medicated)
Nurturing yourself and your baby (fetal development, nutrition, prenatal care, comfort exercises)
Nurturing each other (increasing communication with your partner, enriching your relationship, emotional changes, sexuality)

Class Three- The Process of Birthing
Understanding the process of normal labor and birth
Practice using “tools” for labor and birth (relaxation, visualization, breathing, vocalization, communication and support)

Class Four- Creating Your Birth
Routine birth procedures and interventions
The “Domino Theory” of interventions
Medication options
Barriers to birth
Active birth
Communication and effective advocacy- Writing a Birth Plan

Class Five- When Birth Does Not Go the Way You Planned
Dealing with the unexpected
Addressing fears about birth and developing tools for dealing with them

Class Six- The Newborn, Postpartum and the Family
Welcoming the newborn (bonding)
Newborn exam
Concerns of the first week
Nurturing yourself (nutrition, exercise, emotions, getting help)
Nurturing each other (sexuality, psychological needs)
Parenting resources

Final wrap up/ Q&A

Labor and birth are intense, hard work and each is unique. Through these classes you will acquire the tools to work with your body and the process of giving birth, and you will leave class with the knowledge to make your own best choices at each point along the way.

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