Family Therapy with Young Children: A Peer Consultation Group

Fridays Bimonthly
13.5 CEs | Live On Zoom

Facilitator: Howard C. Wolfe, MA, LMFT

Program Dates: TBD, Starting in January 2023

Family Therapy with Young Children: A Peer Consultation Group is a bimonthly, 13.5 CE event that will meet in nine 90min segments. This group will be structured as a study group and as such will look at approaches to supporting families who have a young child struggling to grow up. The struggle could be related to family members having a neurological issue (ADHD, sensory integration and regulation challenges, spectrum disorder), the structure of the family (parents not able to be a team, leadership problems, boundary issues) or the mistaken goals of the child. The final content and structure will be guided by interviews with interested study group members in December 2022 prior to the start of the program. Some possible ideas include:

  • Moving from an individual therapy to a family therapy perspective where the parents are the agents of change, by involving teachers, grandparents, coaches, nannies, etc.
  • An understanding that parenting is the transmission of values and approaches to life as a human. Parenting is largely a values driven activity. How do we go about understanding a caregiver's parenting style and values? What are our values for family life and parenting? What are the ethics of promoting one type of parenting over another? How do we address disagreements between spouses? Between parents and the therapist? How did we arrive at our approach to parenting?
  • Uses and abuses of various diagnostic systems. Medical vs. relational diagnosis

This course will center around the book Children: The Challenge by Rudolf Dreikurs, with additional insight from The Greenspan Floortime Approach by Stanley Greenspan and his ideas about how a child’s hard wiring interacts with the family (social) environment. The course will use video as an educational platform: specifically, from Supernanny with Jo Frost where she introduces us to families and then demonstrates various parenting methods to get the parents back in charge, and promote a satisfying and calm family atmosphere. The course will also use case consultation, where study group participants could present a family they are working with.

Continuing education units will be distributed to those who attend all nine sessions. If folks need to miss one session, they will be asked to write a 2-3 page summary about the content from Children: The Challenge and how they plan on implementing this information with an identified family.

At the conclusion of this program, participants will be better able to:

  1. Discuss 2 different individual vs. family therapy approaches to helping a young child who is delayed in development (that is, having difficulty "growing up")
  2. Describe the 4 main styles of child rearing and how to help parents decide on a style
  3. Analyze 3 ways to teach them to parents, teachers, and other caregivers using family therapy and parent education methods (the focus will be on Adlerian parenting approaches as developed by Rudolf Dreikurs)
  4. Describe 3 features of the "values proposition" in parenting styles

Schedule (all times in ET):

12-12:15pm: Reviewing three main ideas from assigned reading from Children: The Challenge (lecture)
12:15-12:30pm: Reflections about what was learned from the assigned reading and how that plays out in family therapy
12:30-12:45pm: Video from Supernanny (early sessions), Greenspon’s Floortime (later sessions)
12:45-1pm: Strategies for practicing skills from the video and incorporating them into the treatment plan
1pm-1:15pm: Case Reviews
1:15-1:30pm: Summary of the day

FREE for Members – Become an NEAFAST Member! 
$80 for Non-Members

Sign Up for the peer group Here!

Howard C. Wolfe, MA, LMFT was trained as a Family Sociologist before completing two marriage and family therapy programs, one at Penn State (MA) in Human Development and one at The Minnesota State University (PhD program) in Home Economics. He has been practicing for many years in a variety of settings including street work with youth, mental health clinics (as a clinician, supervisor, and director), and in private practice. He has directed two successful Center for Substance Abuse Prevention Substance Abuse Prevention Grants. His work is split between providing training and consultation on child guidance and substance abuse prevention and treatment for youth, and a private practice in Marriage and Family Therapy in Arlington, MA. His career is dedicated to helping children grow up and understanding the things that keep them from growing up. He believes that the Family Systems approach can play an important and unique role by promoting healthy parenting and families through couple and family therapy and parent education. Visit his website www.wolfe411.org.


This activity is pending certification by the New England Association for Family and Systemic Therapy (NEAFAST) on behalf of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LMFT professional continuing education.

This activity is pending certification by the Massachusetts Mental Health Counselors Association, Inc. on behalf of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LMHC professional continuing education.

This activity is pending certification by the National Association of Social Workers Massachusetts Chapter on behalf of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professions for LICSW professional continuing education.

Please note: It is the participant’s responsibility to check with their individual state boards to verify CE requirements for their state.

This program is being offered independent of any commercial support or conflict of interest. Clinicians with any level of experience are welcome to participate.

Cancellation Policy: Please email us at [email protected] if you are unable to make it. We will give a full reimbursement for cancels prior to December 28, 2022.