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Find the Right Childbirth and Parenting Classes for You

May 03, 2011

 Group Meetings, Clinic Times Posted on Hospital’s Facebook Page 

Are you pregnant, nursing, or just looking for an informative or fun class to sharpen your skills as a parent or parent-to-be? Chances are that Washington Hospital’s Maternal/Child Education Department has the resources to fit your needs.

The variety of classes and programs ranges from potentially lifesaving, such as CPR for Family and Friends, to innovative and fun, like Sign, Say and Play.

For moms—and dads—who have been through the birthing process before, a great resource is the Parents Again Package, which includes the Prepared Childbirth/Refresher class and the Big Brother/Big Sister class.

There is also the Refresher Class, for moms and coaches who have taken Prepared Childbirth within the last three to five years.

And for parents expecting multiples, there’s a class just for them—aptly named Mastering Multiples. Designed to be taken in addition to Prepared Childbirth, this two-hour class readies parents for the unique challenges of multiple births, from delivery to breastfeeding.

For expecting moms looking to stay fit and flexible during pregnancy, while reducing aches and pains, Karen Smith, R.N., program coordinator of the hospital’s Maternal/Child Education Department, heartily recommends Prenatal Exercise.

"Our yoga program has really blossomed, and now we’re doing it two days a week," she says. "It’s also really exciting because one of our instructors teaching the class’s yoga techniques is pregnant and she’s hoping to teach up until delivery, which is truly teaching by example."

Prenatal exercise is ongoing. Classes are held Tuesdays from 5 to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 10 to 11 a.m. Call (510) 791-3423 for additional details. (To take part in the Prenatal Exercise/Yoga program, participants must obtain a signed medical release form from their obstetrician.)

For nursing moms, they can get the supplies and support necessary for successful breastfeeding through the Lactation Center, which has breast pumps and breastfeeding accessories for sale and for rent. (See below for clinic hours and location.)

"With Washington Hospital on Facebook, it’s a great way for moms to stay connected," Smith says. "The moms who come to classes are savvy about Facebook and Twitter and we want them to have one more place where they can find our list of classes. If you go to the Web site, click the Facebook link for one more way to access our information online.

"We’ll be posting meeting times for programs like Baby ‘n’ Me and the latch clinic, which people don’t have to register for. We also encourage people to look on Facebook for other available classes and then call us for more information."

To see a list of Childbirth and Parenting classes, visit or call (510) 791-3423 for complete times, dates, locations, cost and additional information.

To follow Washington Hospital online, click the Facebook or Twitter logos on the Home page at

Featured Classes and Programs 

Big Brother, Big Sister: Designed for children three years of age and above. This entertaining class helps siblings prepare for the arrival of a new baby. (Fee: $50) Upcoming Dates: May 7, June 4

Sibling Preparation: If you choose to have your children attend the birth of their sibling, these private sessions provide an excellent orientation. Call (510) 791-3423 for appointment.

Prepared Childbirth/Refresher: This abbreviated version of the Prepared Childbirth class is designed for the mother and coach who have both taken Prepared Childbirth classes within the last three to five years. (Fee: $75) Upcoming dates: June 11

Mastering Multiples: This class helps expecting parents master multiples from delivery to breastfeeding (designed to be taken in addition to a Prepared Childbirth class). Scheduled individually after completion of a Prepared Childbirth class. (Fee: $50) Call (510) 791-3423 for an appointment.

Lactation Center Programs: Latch Clinic, offering group support for positioning and latch: Tuesdays and Fridays at 11 a.m.: Wednesdays at 11 a.m. : April 30; May 9, 28; June 4, 27 (Fee: $40): Always scheduled on Wednesdays preceding Beyond Newborn Clinic. (Fee: $35)
Hours: Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday, 1 to 5 p.m. (Closed Sundays)
Where: 2299 Mowry Avenue, Suite 2C, Fremont
Call: (510) 494-7013, Monday through Friday

Beyond Newborn Clinic

Prenatal Breastfeeding Class

Back to Work Breastfeeding Class