Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA)
About This Program
Target Population: Grandparents and other kinship caregivers who are not the biological parents of the child in their care
PASTA is a parenting program designed for relative caregivers who are not the biological parents of the children in their care. PASTA provides grandparents and other kinship caregivers with information, skills, and resources designed to enhance their ability to provide effective care for the young relatives they are parenting. PASTA consists of eight sessions that focus on topics including child development, discipline and guidance; caring for oneself as a caregiver; rebuilding a family; living with teens; legal issues; and advocacy.
The goals of Parenting A Second Time Around (PASTA) are:
- Acknowledge the ambivalent feelings that may accompany changing roles as grandparents (or other relatives) assume parenting responsibilities and children adjust to their new living arrangements
- Help those who have moved into a parenting role feel more confident, comfortable, and informed about community resources available to them
- Provide a forum for discussion about sensitive issues (for example, explaining to children why parents are unable to care for them), including the practice of effective communication skills and information about mental health resources
- Provide an overview of child development, including information about temperament, as a reminder or “brush” up for caregivers
- Offer information and practical tips about authoritative (loving and firm) discipline
- Encourage caregivers to see themselves as advocates for the children in their care, particularly in accessing legal, medical, social, and education services
- Review key points about adolescent development in order to establish realistic expectations for teen behavior, and explore changing relationships within the family
- Introduce indicators of high-risk adolescent behaviors and discuss strategies and resources to help caregivers keep teen children safe
The essential components of Parenting A Second Time Around (PASTA) include:
- Eight workshops on the following topics:
- Identifying and reflecting ambivalent feelings about changing roles, identifying helpful community resources
- Child development and individual differences
- Adult-child interactions, grief and loss, relating to your adult child, and solution-focused problem solving
- Characteristics of effective discipline, establishing a discipline style, and addressing high-risk behaviors
- Legal issues including custody, visitation, and child support
- Advocacy, negotiating systems, and connecting with community programs
- Key points in adolescent development and realistic expectations for behavior
- Indications of high-risk behavior and strategies and resources to help
- Workshop Handouts to distribute throughout each session
- Evaluation tools to assess the effectiveness of the course (pretests and posttests)
- Supplemental materials
- Workshop outlines (including suggested prompts for program facilitators and directions for activities)
Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA) directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:
- Parenting grandchildren or other relatives, lack of tools on how to parent these children, lack of tools on how to care for oneself while parenting, difficult or complex family relationships with the parents of the children in their care
Eight two-hour sessions, but two sessions (one for an introduction and one for a graduation session at the end of the course) can be added as desired
8-10 weeks (one session per week, lasting ten weeks if an introduction and graduation session is offered)
This program is typically conducted in a(n):
- Community Agency
Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA) includes a homework component:
After each session, participants receive handouts and they are encouraged to practice elements from the class at home and report back how it went in the next session.
Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA) has materials available in a language other than English:
For information on which materials are available in this language, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).
Resources Needed to Run Program
The typical resources for implementing the program are:
Parent educator to teach the course, space for a class, handouts for each session, whiteboard or poster paper and markers, pencils for each participant, and tape
Education and Training
Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications
This curriculum is designed as a training module for educators with a strong background in human development and family sciences. It is also appropriate for allied health and mental health professionals, providing a strong concentration in the above. There is no specific license required.
Education and Training Resources
There is a manual that describes how to implement this program , and there is training available for this program.
- Denyse Variano
Training is obtained:
Dependent on needs, by request
Number of days/hours:
Dependent on needs, by request
Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research
Currently, there are no published, peer-reviewed research studies for Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA).
Cook, E. L., & Kopko, K. (2014). Outcomes of participants in Cornell Cooperative Extension Parenting a Second Time Around program, treatment and control evaluation, New York City 2013-2014. Retrieved from this link
Cook, E. L., & Kopko, K. (2014). Outcomes of participants in Cornell Cooperative Extension Parenting a Second Time Around program, Orange County 2014. Retrieved from this link
Dunifon, R. (2009). Parenting a Second Time Around. Human Ecology, 37(1), 25.
Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: February 2017
Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: April 2019
Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: March 2017