What is Foreldrehverdag?

Foreldrehverdag is a web resource from the Norwegian Directorate for Children, Youth and Family.

Foreldrehverdag (Everyday Parenting) is a preventative web resource for all parents with children from 0–18 years old which:

  • emphasizes interaction and knowledge of children's needs
  • is based on the International Child Development Programme (ICDP)
  • gives parents sound and quality assured guidance
  • aims to encourage reflection and improve confidence in the parental role – without being judgmental
  • includes articles, videos and podcasts on topics that parents face in everyday life

Foreldrehverdag helps you to get to know your child and yourself better and gives advice about your relationship. You don't get definitive answers, but maybe some new thoughts about why you do what you do, why your child does what he does, and how you can get on better in everyday life.

What works for you and your child?

Fortunately, there is no one right way to be a parent. It's up to each individual family to try and find out what works best. There is never just one way to solve a challenging situation.

Finding the right way for you usually involves a process of trial and error.

You know your child best

Foreldrehverdag is not judgmental and doesn’t offer standardized instructions. It assumes that it is you who knows your child and family situation best.

By thinking a little about what you want for your child, what you think is important to teach him and what you can bring from your own childhood and culture, you can learn to see yourself from the outside, while at the same time getting an “inside” view of your child.  

What does Foreldrehverdag build on?

Foreldrehverdag is inspired by the International Child Development Programme (ICDP). This is a group-based programme designed to support parents in promoting psychosocial development in children and adolescents.

Developed in collaboration with parents and professionals

Foreldrehverdag is developed in collaboration with experienced professionals and parents. In addition to the ICDP, Foreldrehverdag.no builds on other sources of recognized knowledge on children's development.

The value base of Foreldrehverdag is based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. It states that children have the right to protection, participation and to have their basic needs met.

You can select English subtitles for the following video under the options «cogwheel» in the player:

Research based

Foreldrehverdag is based on research in several areas:

  • understanding different cultures
  • child development, interaction and attachment
  • neurobiology
  • theories of learning and instruction

Understanding different cultures

Children's basic needs (such as need for love) are the same in all cultures, but they are expressed and provided for in different ways. As parents, we are influenced by the ideas about children and their needs which are typical of the particular time and culture in which we live. This may show through in how we choose to raise our children.

Child development, interaction and attachment

Children are born social and seek contact and interaction with others right from birth. Foreldrehverdag hopes to support, reinforce and further develop the interaction already existing between parents and their child. 

Children develop deep bonds of attachment to the persons with whom they spend a lot of time. Over the past 50 – 60 years, we have acquired solid research evidence showing that secure relationships with adults are vital to children's mental health.

Through these secure relationships, the child is provided with help to cope with different feelings, experiences and states. Attachment figures will ideally serve as a safe base for the child's exploration, and a safe haven when the child needs comfort and protection.

In the case of an insecure attachment, the attachment figure will not meet these needs in the child.
Here you can read more about different ways to show your child love.

Neurobiology

Neurobiological research emphasizes that the brain is not fully developed at birth, but is what we call use-dependent. The experiences the child acquires, especially during the first few years, affect which nerve pathways in the brain are strengthened and which will fade.

Positive interaction between the child and the parents, or other caregivers, activates the biological foundation the child comes to the world with, resulting in development and attachment.

Neurobiological research has also shown that early experiences affect the child's ability to regulate their own feelings and reactions (self-regulation). Development of the child's self-regulation is initially dependent on the provision of regulation by a caregiver.  This starts from the child's first day, when the parents give the child food or help her to get to sleep (state regulation). Children need regulatory support to varying degrees throughout their childhood, usually up until their 20s.  

Theories of learning and instruction

Parents don’t just give their child physical and emotional security. They also have an educational and guiding role, conveying knowledge which is adapted to the child's development level. The child receives support from parents to understand, among other things, social and cultural norms so that the child is able to participate in the community. Here you can read about how to help your child understand the world around him and How to provide the right amount of support for a child who is in constant development

Published 13. February 2020
Updated 14. February 2020