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Managing Group Dynamics

Problem Solving in your PEPS Group

PEPS Groups can run into problems from time to time. Here are some problem-solvers to try.

PEPS Alumni Group can run into problems from time to time. Here are some problem-solvers to try. Let us know if you have found a good solution to a problem, issue or challenge that your group ran into at And, as in all PEPS Groups, we ask every parent to remember, there is no one “right way” to parent. Listen to and support each other.

Group Dynamics

“My group seems to be stuck in a rut. We meet together every week for a playgroup, but it doesn’t seem like we ever talk about anything new, and it doesn’t seem like we really get a chance to connect. We’re mostly having small talk while the kids play.”

Some groups are happy with playgroups for the kids that only offer casual conversation for the adults. Other groups find that they need something more.

Here are some ideas other groups have tried, to get new energy and focus on including time for parents:

How do you deal with parenting advice or unwanted competition with each other? This can come up in any group. As a group you may want to shift meetings to include more outings or include more activities or speakers, so that all the emphasis is not on topic discussion.

Older Babies and Toddlers

As children get older, sometimes there are challenges as the kids reach key developmental milestones. These can come into play when the groups begin to run into problems. Some of these problems include:

Sleep - Children have different sleep needs
When children have different nap schedules, you can schedule a longer meeting, or alternate mid-morning meetings with afternoon meetings.

Movement - They begin to move everywhere
Talk with your group about how you might need to change how the children are supervised during meetings. Or, talk about more active outings to the park.

Eating - It’s messier than it used to be
Who will clean up after everyone leaves? Often homes are much messier after the groups leave than they used to be. (Maybe one or two people can stay to help clean up or this might be a good time to change your meeting places.)

Behavior -Sharing, Hitting, Biting can begin to occur
Toddlers don’t know how to be in a group, how to share, they will hit and they can bite.
Talk with your group about who will intervene if the child is hitting or biting. This can also be a great opportunity to focus on some of the things that the children need developmentally – request the speaker's list ( to invite a specialist to your group.

Keep having Parents’ Night Out during this time. It’s important to stay connected!

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