F-words Training Program

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    Clinician's quote

    Good reminder to incorporate the 'F-words' into my own practice with families to ensure life domains are all considered. Loved hearing the parent perspective.

    Parent's quote

    “The information presented was amazing. Not only will it help me with my work but in my life and with my daughter. I am looking forward to trying these ideas at home.”

    Interested in the F-words?

    The F-words for Child Development - Family, Fun,  Friends,  Functioning, Fitness,  and Future  - give us a new way to think about how children grow and develop. They help us think about the things that children CAN do versus what they cannot do and how to focus on their strengths.

    Watch this video to learn more about the F-words Foundations Course!

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    Course Highlights

    Storytelling Approach: Throughout the F-words Foundations Course, we have included many stories from families, youth and health care providers. You will hear why, how, and where people are using the F-words. By sharing these stories, we have tried to capture individual experiences that show the true impact of these six words. 

    Practical Tools: You will be given F-words tools and will learn how, where, and when to use them. All of the tools are free and available in a number of languages. 

    Shifting Perspectives: We hope this course provides knowledge and encouragement to families, caregivers, and health care providers about the importance of looking at the whole child, beyond their diagnosis and toward the things that matter the most to the child and their family!

    By the end of the course, learners will be able to apply the F-words in their lives and practices.  

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    Five-1-hour modules: We recommend completing 1 module per week, but this can be finished at your own pace.


    Reliable internet access & the free fillable F-words Foundations Course workbook

    Who is this training program for?

    This course is for anyone who works with, and/or cares for children and youth, including: 

    • Family members (e.g., parents, siblings, grandparents)  
    • Health care providers and administrators 
    • Community service providers 
    • Educators 

    Learning Objectives

    By the end of the F-words Foundations Course, learners will be able to:

    • Identify and describe the F-words for Child Development 
    • Share what families and health care providers think about the F-words  
    • Understand how to use the F-words Tools  
    • Apply the F-words in visioning and goal-setting activities  

    Research Opportunity:

    Are you a service provider to, or family member (parent/caregiver) of, someone with a developmental concern in Canada? If so, we would like to invite you to be part of our F-Words Foundations Course study!

    The ‘F-words for Child Development’ (Functioning, Family, Fitness, Fun, Friends, Future) provide a family-centred, strengths-based, holistic approach to child health and development.

    For the study, you will choose to complete one of two versions of the online F-words Foundations Course:

    • (i) the self-paced version; or
    • (ii) an online facilitated version that involves the self-paced version plus weekly one-hour online discussion groups with other caregivers and service providers.

    You will also be asked to complete a questionnaire at baseline, program completion, and three months post-completion. A subset of parents and service providers will be asked if they would like to participate in an optional interview upon of completing the program. 

    Please contact Sarah, hopmansn@mcmaster.ca, if you would like more information about the study.

    F-words Foundations Course: Modules

    The F-words Foundations Course has five modules. Each module takes approximately one hour to complete and includes videos, stories from F-words users and reflection exercises to help you think about and apply the ideas in your own life.

    In partnership with: