Classes – Frequently Asked Questions

When To Take Classes

The best answer for “when should I take a class?” is when it feels right to you and when it fits in your schedule but this gives you a general idea of intended timing

First – SecondTrimester
Welcoming Pregnancy – free class

Second – Third Trimester
Birth Class Series or One-Day
The Bridge Package
Birthing Again
Baby Care Basics
Breastfeeding Basics

Postnatal (0-12 months)
Blossoming Newborns Buds (0-12 weeks)
Blossoming Newborns Sprouts (3-9 months)
Hand in Hand Parenting Classes

Community Supported Parenting (0-3 years)
Hand in Hand Parenting: Toddler Parenting Essentials
Hand in Hand Parenting: Starter Series
Our Family: Parenting Queer

Professional Development
DONA Birth Doula Training
Breastfeeding for Birthworkers
Facilitating Community Training

The Philosophies Behind Our Classes

Facilitating Community

This is an introspection-based approach that Birth Roots has created and developed over the past 15 years that fosters personal growth and development. There is no one right way and these classes support participants in decision making, resource finding and community building along the way.

Community Supported Parenting

Community Supported Parenting is how we bring Facilitating Community into the perinatal experience.  A unique collection of pre and postnatal classes that help parents create support networks and bridges from one framework and context to the next as they traverse all of the milestones of pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and parenting.  Our facilitators create a container where parents can question and try out new ideas and possibilities and group source options and ideas for the many unknowns of the evolution of being a parent.

Hand in Hand Parenting

The Hand in Hand Parenting approach, Parenting by Connection, helps families build a stronger parent-child connection. This strong emotional bond is the hallmark of happy, well-adjusted families. It’s also the soundest way to a better society.

Recent research shows that regardless of background, a close parent-child connection throughout childhood and beyond is the strongest factor in preventing a variety of health and social problems, including young people’s involvement in drugs, violence, and unintended pregnancies.

At Hand in Hand Parenting, we recognize that all children have an innate desire to love and be loved. We also recognize that emotions are important signposts to a child’s interior world. We help parents and caregivers listen to tears and tantrums without becoming reactive or trying to “fix” them. Navigating these strong emotions with warmth results in the deepest connection possible. Hand in Hand also shows parents how to balance authoritative limits with free-flowing play and one-on-one time.

Helping Parents Build Support
Deeply listening to a child in distress greatly increases the child’s sense of safety and connection. There’s simply no better way to handle emotional moments. As rewarding as it is, parenting this way requires internal resources. That’s why Hand in Hand has such a strong focus on empowering parents. We know it’s hard to build trust and closeness with your children when you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed.

In our classes, we provide parents with the resources, tools, and the listening they themselves need so they can remain steady when their children most need their support.

The Gottman Institute’s Bringing Baby Home Series and Couples/Co-Parenting Classes

Research shows that within 3 years of having a baby, approximately 2/3 of couples will feel a significant drop in relationship quality and a dramatic increase in conflict and hostility.  This conflict can have a profound negative impact on the couple’s infants and toddlers

The Bringing Baby Home program is an educational program for pregnant couples and families with children up to 3 years of age.  It was created by Drs John and Julie Gottman at the Relationship Research Institute in Seattle, Washington based on 40 years of marriage and family research.

The content of the two-day workshop is designed to teach parents to:

  • Increase friendship in their relationship
  • Deal effectively with conflict
  • Keep partners involved in infant care and parenting
  • Improve the quality of parent-infant interaction
  • Recognize the psychological and emotional needs of their child
  • Co-parent effectively

Couples who have participated in Dr. Gottman’s program experience:

  • A significantly lower rate of postpartum mood disorders and depression
  • A decrease in relationship hostility
  • A higher level of relationship satisfaction
  • A decreased likelihood of divorce

By supporting couples as they become parents, children benefit by growing up in healthier environments.  If a strong emotional foundation is established early in a child’s life, research shows that they do better in school, adapt better socially, and are physically and emotionally healthier.

For more information about the research click here and here

Payment Options
  • Online Payment – You can register and pay online by visiting our registration page. Payments are processed through pay pal but you don’t have to have a Paypal account to use your card.
  • Mail a payment – Checks can be made payable to Birth Roots and sent to 101 State St, Portland, ME 04101
  • Insurance Reimbursement – most insurance companies reimburse for some, if not all of your childbirth class fees with proof of your payment.  If you need a receipt, please contact the office.
  • Sliding Scale Download our scholarship form HERE and mail or email the information to us.
  • Barter/Trade – We can accommodate creative payment plans and Time Dollars through Hour Exchange Portland on a limited basis.  Hour exchange system allows us to do service trades and barters.
  • Gift Certificates – Gift certificates are available and make a wonderful shower gift. Recipients can register  for classes and choose sending payment at check out. Or the giver can sign up for classes and pay for the class in one step. Payments are processed through Paypal but a Paypal account is not required.
Class Cancellation Policy

Birth Roots is a small nonprofit run by a part-time staff. Our class sizes are intentionally small to increase quality but are also an essential part of our annual budget. That said, we know that the need for class changes and cancellations comes up.  Please email us or call us at your earliest convenience if you know you need to reschedule or cancel your class.

Payment in full is expected at the time of registration unless other arrangements are made. This applies to single and series classes.  Any class missed without notifying Birth Roots prior to the start of class is not eligible for a refund or reschedule.

Course Cancellation Policy
Please notify us as soon as possible if you are ill, put on bed rest, or have another reason for missing your scheduled class.

If you must cancel your registration in a class, we ask that you give us at least one week (7 days) notice.  If you miss a class or cancel your class within 7 days of the course date, all cancellations are subject to a 15% cancellation fee that is non-refundable.   Example:  A one-time class that costs $35 incurs a $5 non-refundable fee and a series class that costs $235 will incur a $35 fee.  Emergency late cancellations will be reviewed on an individual basis.

Refund Policy
Refunds for classes are generally not offered.  If there is room in a subsequent class you may request a reschedule and apply your balance toward a future class. However, if Birth Roots must cancel a class due to low enrollment, we will refund your class registration fee in full and we will also happily recommend other class options for you upon your request.

Exceptions for an Earlier than Expected Birth
If you miss your class due to an earlier than expected birth before your class series begins, we will refund your class payment in full.  No refunds or reschedules can be provided if you have attended 2 out of 4 class sessions.  In this case, a prorated amount less the late cancellation fee may be provided as a credit toward postnatal classes.

Credits and Gift Certificates
All Credits and Gift Certificates must be used within 12 months of the original date of issue or the credit will be forfeited.

Questions?

Call with any questions. (207) 772-4784.

A couple enjoying a Birth Roots class together
A class in progress