Reflective Dialogue
Reflective Dialogue

Reflective Dialogue Parent Education Design (RDPED)

Strengthen parent-child relationships through Reflective Dialogue. (Scroll for details)


We are a comprehensive professional development community where you’ll find all the  resources you need to facilitate parent learning and development –

For your work with parents in groups or one-on-one

If you're a parent, click here to get to resources for you.

Why Reflective Dialogue?

Reflective Dialogue is social-emotional support for the entire family.

Parents who engage in Reflective Dialogue report growth in:

  • Self-awareness and self-compassion
  • Perspective-taking and empathy
  • Confidence and clarity
  • Sensitivity and responsiveness
  • Reflective thinking and problem-solving skills

Reflective Dialogue Parent Education Design (RDPED) is a research-based approach to teaching and problem-solving that cultivates empathy and helps parents do their own thinking, reflection, and perspective-taking.

How RDPED Works

The core methods of RDPED includes the Hourglass Method and the power of video or story. 

The Hourglass Method

The Hourglass Method includes a process of discussing a series of reflective questions that strategically scaffold reflective thinking, self-awareness, perspective-taking, embodied learning, and self-directed insights toward new action. 

Because parents are more likely to take action on their own ideas.

The Hourglass Method may be used to address MANY different needs and circumstances:

When a parent is processing their own challenge, we use the Hourglass Method to process their own story and experience. 

We call this Reflective Problem Solving, and it helps us to: 

  • Stay present with parents in their pain, problem, and perspective
  • Guide and empower parents to find their own solution
  • Fosters more sensitive, responsive parenting
  • Build parents' empathic listening skills 
  • And more...

Reflective Problem Solving may be used in your work with individual or groups of parents, as well as children and colleagues. 

All of the resources are available within the Reflective Problem Solving course, which can be completed on its own or as a part of the RDPED Memberships. See plans below.  

Power of Video

When we’re inviting a discussion around a parenting topic, we use Hourglass Question to examine a video clip. 

RDPED video clips are specifically designed to: 

  • Captivate learners’ whole body attention

  • Help them diffuse from their own experiences and expectations, and

  • Prompt reflective thinking and perspective-taking without the spotlight on them.

Parents appreciate this too...

Watching somebody else in a similar scenario doesn't feel as threatening or as judgmental. - Parent participant in RDPED

You can choose from more than 100 video clips of parent-child and family interaction. 

Our video clips are with real families capturing unscripted interaction because we are prompting reflection and perspective-taking, not modeling best practice.  

We also help you find clips from film and television that prompt discussion around more complex dynamics like generational trauma or talking with children about race and racism.

RDPED Evolution

RDPED was developed and tested at the University of Minnesota in the mid-1990s' by Dr. Ruth Thomas and Dr. Betty Cooke. 

Here's an interview with the founders where Dr. Thomas covers much of the science behind the method still today. 

RDPED has continued to evolve through the leadership of Dr. Heather Cline, who studied under and was mentored by both Dr. Thomas and Dr. Cooke. 

Dr. Cline led the training and curriculum development for RDPED for more than 10 years while working as a parent educator and teaching at the University of Minnesota. 

In 2020, with the blessing from the UMN, Heather launched this online learning community to provide a new professional home for RDPED with the intention to make the training and curriculum more accessible to facilitators.

The mission is working!

We have nearly tripled the number of video clips in our curriculum, which is now in a digital library instead of on a DVD. We have more than 40 lesson plans fully developed for you to teach about a range topics including play, literacy, executive function, self-regulation, temperament, and parenting values. We also have lessons prepared for you to discuss more sensitive and complex topics like talking about race and racism or gender and sexuality. Reflective Dialogue is perfect for discussing subjects where there isn't one right answer and everyone is coming from a different perspective. 

Our community is growing too! 

Now that RDPED is online, members join from across the US and around the world and easily access the training and curriculum to support parents in their community.

Betty remains as passionate as ever 🥰

What your membership includes

Here are the specific ways you're supported here:

  • 50+ Clock Hours for teachers, CFLEs, and more
  • Courses on teaching with Reflective Dialogue, Strengthening Parent-Child Interaction, & Reflective Problem Solving
  • 100+ video clips to use in teaching or coaching
  • 40+ prepared lesson plans for teaching
  • Question forms for Reflective Problem Solving
  • Weekly co-planning calls
  • Weekly podcast
  • And much more. 

This is a comprehensive professional development community, which means that you get all the content and curriculum, as well as mentorship and community connection so that you're not doing any of it alone.

Want a tour inside? 

In this video Dr. Cline gives you a peak inside the online space and covers all the features included in your membership.

What members love 💗

Here's what parenting educators and coaches are saying about their experience with RDPED...

This is the most helpful and relevant professional development for parent educators! - Stephanie

I have come to realize that people often don't want someone to solve their problem and I'm thrilled that this approach gives teachers another way to work with parents without directly solving the problem of the day. The skills parent build while participating in reflective dialogue meet them where they are in their personal development and have the ability to transfer to multiple parenting situations. - Anna

I love that there are lesson plans already done with video clips and hour glass questions.  This gives me more confidence in developing my own lessons by gaining experience using the lessons that are already made.  - Katti

The community feel and the ability to talk through real world scenarios were both extremely helpful. Reflective Dialogue is amazing, I'm glad that I will be able to help more parents access it. - Britta

Ready to get started? 

Choose one of the options below and come on in! 

Everything is ready for you inside. 

See you there 🤓