Parent Awareness Group

What is the Parent Awareness Group (PAG)?

The PAG strives to provide Heartwood families with a forum to discuss and share parenting resources. The PAG will meet to discuss books, parenting hot topics and to hear presentations from guest speakers. The topics of interest will be determined at the first Parent Support Group meeting of the year.

When does the PAG meet?

The PAG will meet every other month, starting in October, on the school’s campus. Meeting times will vary although they will usually be on a Tuesday in the evening hours with childcare provided.

PAG Meeting Topics

During the first PSG meeting of the year we gathered information from parents about the types of topics they would be interested in learning about.

The most requested topics were:

  • Positive Discipline
  • Sleep Problems
  • Anxiety Problems
  • Consequences
  • Montessori Method

If you are interested in about learning about a topic that you do not see listed, please contact and let us know.

Upcoming PAG Meetings

Montessori at Home!

Date: Tuesday, March 28th
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm (Childcare will be available for children ages 3 and up.)

RSVP: To RSVP for this event, please click here.

Description: Join Janet and Marie to discuss practical ways to incorporate The Montessori Method at home.

More About the Speakers: Marie is a work at home mom of two who incorporates the principles of the Montessori method to her everyday homeschooling life. She has a degree education from Appalachian State University and is a Montessori blogger at Christian Montessori Network, Child Led Life, and Montessori Bloggers Network. Her passion for supporting other Montessori mothers has stemmed into a full time business at First Cup To Close where she also develops curriculum using her passion for all things Montessori. .

Watch Your Language! Simple Words for Taking the Angst Out of Parenting with Jean Wittig

Date: Tuesday, April 25th
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm (Childcare will be available for children ages 3 and up.)

RSVP: To RSVP for this event, please click here.

Description: Guest Speaker Jean Wittig, Parenting Coach, Life Coach and Author, will present: “Relax and Re-energize – Equip yourself with tools for taking the angst out of parenting” and will answer the question…“What to do instead of SCREAMING!!”

 A note from Jean: Come prepared to experience some mental relaxation, while learning communication skills and effective methods to handle challenging situations in day-to-day life with kids. If you want to make some small changes that can lead to BIG results, this talk is for you. Two reminders: 1) small does not equal insignificant and 2) change itself can lead to some stress. We have tools for that too!!

We are all in the same boat! My intention is to support parents and grandparents in choosing kind, firm, and effective responses to daily parenting challenges, just as I have been supported by the fine people and programs that have come my way over the years… most recently Positive Discipline. The key to Positive Discipline is not punishment and not permissiveness, but mutual respect focusing on solutions and developing children’s skills and perceptions needed to become capable, responsible people.

About Jean and her book: (more at

Jean is a parent of 3 daughters, Grandma to 2 girls, and Granny Jean to her step-granddaughter. She has been a Heartwood grandmother since 2013. As a mother, a Girl Scout Leader, a professional educator, academic coach  and parent coach, she has been inspiring individuals and groups to “bring out their best” for over 30 years. Jean was an instructor of Study Skills and Student Success Courses at a women’s college in north central NJ and served as the Learning Specialist at a girls’ high school, also in NJ. Her background includes over 25 years of using and facilitating the Faber/Mazlish programs “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk” and “Siblings Without Rivalry.” In 2014 she was introduced to the book “Children the Challenge” by Alfred Adler and Rudolph Dreikurs and added to her repertoire with Jane Nelsen’s Positive Discipline based on the work of Adler and Dreikurs. She became certified as a Positive Discipline Parent Educator in 2016. Having served as a facilitator of a women’s spirituality and meditation group, Jean became an advocate of self-care for women, especially moms, and in 2009 wrote the book“Nurturing Nellie’s Interactive Journal for Women: 5 Ways to Nurture Yourself in 5 Minutes or Less.” Based on the principle “love thy neighbor as thyself” the book embodies the philosophy that to love and care for others, we must first love and care for ourselves. Jean notes that as parents, we often forget about our own self-care, and Nurturing Nellie helps us remember. The book will be available for purchase at $10 a copy, which is one-third off the retail price of $14.95.

Past PAG Meetings

The ABC’s of Identifying and Reducing Anxiety in Your Children with Dr. Kristen Wynns

Date: Tuesday, December 6th
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm (Childcare will be available for children ages 3 and up.)

RSVP: To RSVP for this event, please click here.

Description: Dr. Wynns is a child and adolescent psychologist who owns a child/adolescent specialty private practice in Cary, NC called Wynns Family Psychology. She has a Ph.D. and Master’s in Clinical Psychology from UNC-Greensboro. Dr. Wynns will talk about how to both identify and help ease anxiety in children. Her talk will be followed by a question and answer period.

More About Dr. Wynns

At Wynns Family Psychology, Dr. Wynns provides therapy for kids ages 3 and up, parent therapy, and social skills groups and camps. She also provides psychological and psychoeducational evaluations for ADHD, Autism, Learning Disabilities, and Gifted. Dr. Wynns specializes in high conflict divorce cases by offering co-parenting therapy, reunification therapy, therapy for children of divorce, and a full menu of custody evaluations.

An Introduction to Positive Discipline with Liane Watson

This meeting was held on October 25, 2016. Want to hear about this topic again? Let us know!

Description:  Liane Watson will be presenting an overview of Positive Discipline and The Family Meeting.  Liane is an accredited Positive Discipline trainer with a Masters Degree in Family Life and Parent Education and is a certified Early Childhood Montessori educator.

Interested in learning more about Positive Discipline? Liane Watson will be offering a 7 week workshop to help parents do just that. 

Course Description

This course will be based on the best selling Positive Discipline parenting books by Jane Nelsen, Lynn Lott and several others. Parents and caregivers will learn long-term solutions for raising kids to feel “I am capable, I can contribute, and I can use my personal power in useful ways to improve my life and the lives of others!” Positive Discipline teaches long-term parenting skills that will encourage children to think for themselves, become more responsible and have a greater respect for themselves and others.  Feel supported while learning some non-punitive, respectful methods that will incorporate kindness and firmness into your relationship with your children.  Get to the core of your children’s misbehavior, practice encouraging tools and gain a sense of accomplishment!

The  7 week interactive workshop ideal for participants who want deep learning and support at a pace that allows for individual processing and practice. We will use the Positive Discipline book (included) to support the in-class lessons as well as the Parents Helping Parents Problem Solving Steps Process.

Sessions held on Tuesdays November 15, 22, 29 December 6, 13 and January 3, 10

Parenting the Positive Disciple Way is $150/person or $175/parenting partners

Childcare is $30/child $45/children

Class will be lead by Liane Watson, Parent Educator and former Heartwood Preschool teacher who holds a BA in Human Services from Peace College and Masters in Family Life and Parent Education from North Carolina State University.  Liane is also a certified Positive Discipline lead trainer for parents.

Sign up @ or call Liane Watson at Figuring it Out Parenting, (919) 302-0578.


Curious what might be covered in a Heartwood PAG Meetings? Check out some of our past meeting topics to get a better idea. Interested in hearing one of these speakers again? Please let us know!

  • Developmental Differences & the Whole Child Approach in Montessori with Bridget Dickerson
  • Sleep Solutions with Irene Gouge
  • Reading and Language Development featuring both a reading teacher and Speech-Language Pathologist
  • Positive Discipline with Liane Watson
  • Conscientiousness
  • Orenstein Solutions with psychologist Dr. Daniel Sheras
  • Heartmath with Terry McDougall EdS

School Resumes Wednesday, January 11

Heartwood will re-open Wednesday, January 11. Please be very careful coming into the building as there are still many places around campus with thick ice.