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Mindful Parenting Groups (MPG)

Mindful Parenting Groups provide a development-driven, relationship-focused approach to the cultivation of resilient, healthy and secure parent-child bonds.   In an intimate and interactive group setting, MPGs bring together infants, toddlers or preschoolers (ages three months to three+ years), along with their parents, in order to promote childhood attachment security. Most notably, MPGs allow parents to slow down, reflect, and practice mindful observation―about their own emotional experiences as well as those of their young children. These groups are structured to enhance a parent’s capacity to make meaning of the thoughts, feelings, intentions, and behaviors of his or her child. By giving meaning to a child’s emotional experience, and ‘‘representing’’ this experience to him/her in a regulated fashion, the parent sets the stage for the development of a sense of security and safety in the child.

MPGs are facilitated by infant/early childhood mental health specialists on a weekly basis. Children are grouped developmentally in MPGs, with no more than six months’ difference in age between infants and toddlers up to age two, or no more than eight months’ difference for those over age two.

Each group time consists of three primary components: Child-Centered Observation of the children at play, modeling of respectful parenting practices through Facilitation of Social Interactions, Parent-Centered Reflection on what is observed, as well as time for questions about each child’s development. In this process, the group addresses behavioral, social, and emotional issues such as:

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Motor development

Social interactions




For older toddlers, a group snack and a circle time with songs and fingerplays is added, providing opportunities for children to participate in a school-readiness activity at their own pace, experiencing the joys and challenges of navigating structure and turn-taking.

Furthermore, MPGs also place a major emphasis on increasing the behavioral quality, psychological involvement and affective tone of young children’s primary caregiving relationships, as well as parental resilience, supportive social connections, knowledge of respectful parenting practices, and of child development.

MPG Training

Level 1: Mindful Parenting Groups Fundamentals is a two-day workshop designed for licensed or pre-licensed mental health professionals that presents an overview of Mindful Parenting Groups and in-depth exploration of the facilitator’s role in promoting parental reflective capacity through use of the three core components of this therapeutic model: mindful observation, flexible responsiveness, and reflection. Level 1 training is a prerequisite for participation in Level 2 training.


Level 2: Mindful Parenting Groups (Infant or Toddler Group Facilitation) consists of Trainee participation in a MPG Demonstration Group with concurrent group supervision. MPG Demonstration Groups consist of four to six parent and child couples, plus two to three trainees along with the Training Facilitator. Demonstration Groups last 12 weeks and are supported with 14 weeks of weekly hour long supervision of the group experience. Trainees are expected to complete and present in supervision one detailed process recording of MPG Demonstration Group as part of their training.

Upon completion of the MPG Demonstration Group, Trainees prepare for and lead a MPG Group at their own agency or private practice setting. This group must last a minimum of 18 weeks, and Mindful Parenting Groups training staff will provide 20 weeks of supervisory consultation concurrent to the Trainee-led group experience to ensure competency and reliability in the delivery of Mindful Parenting Groups to families. Each Trainee participating in this process is responsible for completing and presenting in supervision two detailed process recordings and one videotape of their MPG experience as part of this training.

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CONTACT US to bring a Level 1 Training to your site OR to arrange Long Distance Training in Level 2 for out-of-town trainees. 

Phone: (323) 275-4805

Email:   info@reflectivecommunitites.org