Parenting Center

Parenting Center

The Parenting Center provides families with the support, guidance, and enrichment needed to raise young children in the city.  LGBTQ and straight, couples and single parents, Jewish and non-Jewish, biological and adoptive — all families are warmly welcomed.  Classes and programs are designed to meet the developmental and social needs of infants and toddlers (newborns through age 4), to create meaningful bonding experiences for caregivers, and to provide practical skills and solutions, advice, and community-building opportunities for parents and parents-to-be.

We offer a wide variety of Sunday and weekday classes for children ages 0-4 and their caregivers, as well as workshops for parents, parents-to-be, and folks who want to be parents.

Upcoming Workshops for parents and parents-to-be

NESTED Newborn Care Boot Camp
Feb 23 @ 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Nested’s Newborn Care Boot Camp is a comprehensive class that will prepare you for the moment your baby is born through the first few anxiety-provoking months. We take you on a journey from the day of discharge through your newborn’s first few months at home.

Our emphasis is setting your family up for a smooth transition, promoting a healthy baby, parents and supporting community.

  • Review normal newborn appearance and hospital discharge logistics
  • Learn signs of newborn illness and when to call your pediatrician
  • Our clinical instructors will demonstrate swaddling, soothing techniques, bathing and changing diapers
  • Parents will learn choking prevention tactics and infant CPR and demonstrate how to resuscitate a specialized CPR non responsive dolls
  • Clients will have access to physical therapy videos to address proper ergonomics to prevent musculoskeletal  injury new parents face
  • This class also incorporates the new challenges of a growing family in terms of boundaries with work and family

Ultimately, clients will be armed with a toolkit to strengthen the physical and emotional health of the entire family. This is a perfect class for biological, adoptive or foster parents, friends, caregivers, nannies and grandparents.

Parent Coffee: Gentle Sleep Secrets for Newborns
Feb 27 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Join us for coffee, the company of other new parents, and a relaxed conversation about your baby’s sleep.  Gentle sleep coach Jessica Dodson of Starlight Sleep Coaching will discuss how sleep develops during infancy, why it can be so difficult and what you can do to make it easier for both you and your baby. Learn gentle steps you can take to help shape your child’s sleep from their earliest months and how to avoid common pitfalls that can lead to restless nights. Bring your questions – we’ll spend most of our time talking through participants’ specific situations.   Babies warmly welcomed!

The Other Kind of Smart: Enhancing Your Child’s Emotional Intelligence
Mar 18 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Emotional Intelligence is essential for academic and life success, perhaps even more so than cognitive ability.  This involves awareness and understanding of one’s own feelings, skills to manage strong emotions, and the ability to relate to the emotions of others. Join two Kingsbury psychologists to learn how parents can coach their children through the turbulent world of childhood emotions to develop stronger emotional awareness, greater self-control, and closer connections with others.

Parent Coffee: Returning to Work . . . Or Not
Mar 26 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Join us for coffee, the company of other new parents, and a relaxed conversation about returning to work . . . or not.  Randi Braun, coach, speaker, and Founder of Something Major will walk through how to prepare for this transition, what questions to think through, and strategies for self care as a working mother. Randi is a thought leader whose insights on working motherhood have been featured in The Washington Post and Parents Magazine.  Q&A is heavily encouraged so please come with your questions to this judgement-free conversation. Babies warmly welcomed!

Raising Tough Targets: What Parents Can Do to Keep Kids Safe from Sexual Abuse
Apr 23 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Sexual abuse and prevention is an uncomfortable subject. Unfortunately, it’s also something we parents have to think about, as we constantly entrust the safety of our kids to schools, camp, religious institutions, sports, babysitters, and other care settings. How can you know whether your child is in an environment that takes sexual abuse prevention seriously? What are the key questions to ask and red flags to look for, and how do you feel confident raising this issue in the first place? What can you do to teach your child to identify risks and speak up with their concerns? How do you make your child a “tough target”?

Join Meira Ellias, a mom, Clinical Social Worker, and Psychotherapist with deep experience in sexual abuse trauma and prevention, for a candid workshop with the goal of empowering parents with education and real-life tools to handle these difficult issues.


The Parenting Center at the Edlavitch DCJCC has been my hub for everything kid-related from early pregnancy to post-delivery and now into the toddler years. In a transient city like DC, the EDCJCC plays a crucial role in fostering a sense of community among new parents. The people I met in my Beyond the Bump group and in classes such as Musical Infants, are some of my closest friends today. I love that our kids have been playing together from the very beginning and some of them are now entering preschool together. The resources the Parenting Center offers are phenomenal -- offering a supportive environment and much needed advice, holding helpful workshops for navigating parenting challenges, and providing engaging activities for infants and toddlers. I feel incredibly fortunate to have benefited from all that the EDCJCC has to offer!
Shannon, mom to a 4 year old