Best Online Parenting Classes

Megan Leahy Parent Coach offers a credible and practical online parenting class.

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Nothing prepares you for the actual day-in and day-out of raising a child, whether they are a baby, toddler, middle-schooler, or teenager. It’s hard stuff, and even though sleepless nights with a newborn feel like the toughest thing in the world, parenting doesn’t actually get any easier as your kids get older—it just gets different. If you feel massively unprepared for the present and future challenges of parenthood, join the club: According to a 2015 study by Zero to Three, 73% of parents call parenting their biggest challenge. 

Luckily, a parenting class can help. Parenting classes can work wonders for growing your confidence in all things parenting- and family-related; a 2019 study suggests that nearly any type of parenting class, regardless of the type of instruction, can increase positive parent-child outcomes. An online parenting course allows you to learn on your own time, making it easier than ever to sign up, get answers to your trickiest child-rearing questions, and implement what you’ve learned right away. Here are the best online parenting classes of 2023.

Best Online Parenting Classes of 2023

Best Overall : Megan Leahy Parent Coach


Megan Leahy Parent Coach

Megan Leahy Parent Coach

Key Specs
  • Price: $149/month with minimum of 6 months
  • Skills Taught: Conflict resolution; building stronger relationships
  • Duration: 6-month membership
Why We Chose It

Megan’s advice column in The Washington Post is popular for a reason: She’s smart, practical, and family-savvy, making her online class an excellent resource for parents needing extra help.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Uses a whole family approach

  • Access the class as soon as you register

  • Materials are yours to keep after purchase

  • Access exclusive Facebook groups for additional peer support

Cons
  • More cost-prohibitive than other options

  • May be overwhelming for parents who need focused support

Overview

If you subscribe to The Washington Post, you’ve probably read Meghan Leahy’s advice to parents on various topics. In addition to being a certified parent coach, she’s also a parenting columnist for the national newspaper and frequently tries to help parents find their way out of sticky situations with their kids.

In her online course, Club Grow the Good, Leahy shows parents how to handle these situations. Through ten age-specific modules, she walks parents through the nitty-gritty of power struggles, discipline, family meetings, and making connections with their children. Notably, she also takes a whole family approach to her class, inviting parents to think just as much about what they need as what their kids need (because happy parents make happy kids).

What sets Leahy’s course apart from many others is the convenience, accessibility, and support baked right in. Once you register, the class begins immediately and can be worked through on your own terms.

Spouses, partners, or caregivers can join, you can access the materials forever, and there are a variety of learning resources available (like monthly bonus calls and homework assignments). You will also be able to join a closed Facebook group, allowing you to ask questions, share tips, and find support from other parents who have taken the course.

The class costs $149 monthly, and the minimum duration is six months. Leahy also offers one-on-one coaching with parents, which consists of six sessions at a total cost of $1,580.

Best Value : Peace at Home Parenting Solutions


Peace at Home Parenting Solutions

Peace at Home Parenting Solutions

Key Specs
  • Price: Free
  • Skills Taught: Family wellness; schedules and routines; stress management
  • Duration: Self-paced
Why We Chose It

There are no definitive guides to parenthood, but there is Peace at Home Parenting Solutions, which offers two free ways to get answers to your pressing questions: live sessions and pre-recorded ones.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • All classes offered for free

  • Live and pre-recorded sessions that fit your schedule

  • Hosted by licensed mental health professionals

Cons
  • Presents basic info you can get elsewhere

  • Limited approach to learning (i.e. mostly audio sessions)

Overview

Are you looking for the answer to a specific parenting question? One of Peace at Home’s free online courses might be able to help.

There are two formats to choose from: live classes on parenting essentials and pre-recorded ones, packing practical tips into short, manageable sessions that can be started and finished in one sitting.

Both of the class formats have advantages. With a live course, you can ask questions and receive an answer from the moderator, plus access the recording afterward if you missed anything or want to hear it again.

Pre-recorded courses, on the other hand, can be played anytime you want (and offer all the playback options you need because you know your kids will probably interrupt you).

Issues like parent wellness, routines, and chores, sleep coaching your kids, and stress management are all presented by Peace at Home’s team of licensed mental health professionals, educators, social workers, and psychologists.

This might not be the most comprehensive class out there, but you will get reliable advice from seasoned parenting experts at no cost. And, since the classes won’t consume much of your precious free time, it’s a win-win.

Best for Co-Parenting : Crossroads of Parenting and Divorce by Active Parenting


Active Parenting

Active Parenting

Key Specs
  • Price: $80
  • Skills Taught: Co-parenting peacefully; creating a new “normal”
  • Duration: 4-6 hours, self-paced with 3 weeks of access
Why We Chose It

Parents who are separating or divorced must work out the dynamics of their new relationship while continuing to parent their kids; this class shows you how to navigate all of your sticky relationship issues.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Considers different stages of your child’s life

  • Helps you build a co-parenting relationship with your partner

  • Strengths family bonds through changes

Cons
  • You have a limited amount of time to use the materials

  • Not available on any mobile devices

Overview

It’s hard enough figuring out this whole parenting thing when you have a live-in partner, but for parents going through a divorce or separation, the job becomes even more challenging. You might have competing interests, parenting styles, and priorities.

But does that mean you’re doomed to disagree on everything (and scar your kids in the process)? Thankfully, no. There are ways for divorced and separated parents to co-parent peacefully, though it does take work, willingness, and compromise.

At Active Parenting, Dr. Michael Popkin has developed a series of online courses to help parents through various ages and stages of their child’s life, including the one where you’re splitting from your partner and trying to find a new, healthy “normal” for your family.

This course, called Crossroads of Parenting and Divorce, breaks co-parenting down into five strategies necessary for creating a healthy relationship with your parenting partner while supporting your child and prioritizing their needs.

The course is more affordable than others at around $80, but that price tag comes with a few limitations: Once you register, you’ll need to complete all hours of the course (it takes four to six hours to work through the materials) within three weeks.

Best for Organization : The Unfrazzled Mom by Messy Motherhood


Messy Motherhood

Messy Motherhood

Key Specs
  • Price: $99
  • Skills Taught: Planning and organization; task management
  • Duration: Lifetime access
Why We Chose It

Mom life is crazy—and your day-to-day routine proves it. With the organization and task management techniques taught in this class, you can smooth out the wrinkles and have happier, more relaxed days with your kids.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Created by a children’s mental health therapist

  • Multiple avenues for learning, including live sessions

  • Includes option for community chatting

Cons
  • Modules are only 5-10 minutes long

  • Focus is only on organization, not other relevant parenting skills

Overview

Do you feel like all your mom friends have it together, and you're just a hot mess? Parenting is exhausting, confusing, and stressful, and unless you're a super-organized, type-A personality, it can do a number on your executive functioning.

Amanda Rueter, a children's mental health therapist and the creator of Messy Motherhood, knows precisely how you feel. Getting overwhelmed by the daily demands of parenting—the messes, the to-do lists, the guilt—is understandable.

Thankfully, Rueter says it doesn't have to be that way. Her online course promises to help you rediscover the joy and positivity of parenting by finding balance, peace, and downtime in your day-to-day life.

This class is a standout because it focuses on real, practical tips for organizing your task list and reducing battles with your kids. At the same time, it helps you organize your mental health, introducing a sense of much-needed confidence and calm to your parenting tactics.

Even the most frazzled, disorganized, and stressed-out moms will find themselves thinking more clearly after taking this course (around $99), which includes three short modules, live calls, and a 30-day membership in the site's community, The Messy Motherhood Village.

Best for Stress Management : Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids by Aha! Parenting


Aha! Parenting

Aha! Parenting

Key Specs
  • Price: $179
  • Skills Taught: Emotional regulation; family relationships; discipline
  • Duration: 11 weekly lectures with lifetime access
Why We Chose It

Stressed-out parents make for stressed-out kids, but it doesn’t have to be that way; Aha! Parenting’s class teaches parents how to bring a whole lot of zen into their family lifestyle.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Teaches parents and kids healthy life skills

  • Emphasizes relationship-building

  • Includes the book the course is built around

Cons
  • Requires participation for 12 weeks

  • You may not like the method of listening to audio lessons or mediating

Overview

At its core, parenting is a relationship. It doesn't matter that you're an adult and your "partner" is a tiny, irrational toddler who likes to wear his underwear on his head—it's still a relationship, and that takes work.

Dr. Laura Markham's course aims to help you grow in your parenting approach by emphasizing common aspects of all relationships: communication, confidence, respect, and deep connection.

The 12-week course takes a big-picture approach to developing healthy family bonds, including practicing emotional regulation (for you and your kids), finding routines, teaching resilience and discipline, fostering strong sibling bonds, and understanding your anger triggers.

Logistically, there's a good package deal here: for roughly $154, you get weekly audio lessons, short meditations, practical exercises and sessions, permanent access to an online support group of parents, plus a copy of Markham's popular book "Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids" (which the online course is based around).

If you feel that your stress is the biggest challenge to overcome to have a happier, more peaceful home life, this might be the best fit for you.

Best for Decision-Making : The Science of Parenting


The Science of Parenting

The Science of Parenting

Key Specs
  • Price: Free audit, or $49 verified
  • Skills Taught: Researching parenting trends; analyzing statistics; confident decision-making
  • Duration: 3-5 hours per week for 5 weeks
Why We Chose It

This course shows parents how to research and analyze the latest parenting information to become more confident decision-makers.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • No-cost course offered through the University of California San Diego

  • Teaches valuable research and analytic skills

  • Instructs you how to apply your knowledge to your family’s life

Cons
  • Limited scope of topics to learn

  • No live or interactive options

  • No community or instructor support

  • The free version does not allow continued access to material once class ends

Overview

If you’ve ever stood in the aisle of a baby store and wondered how to choose one pacifier from the 35 different brands and models offered, there is the perfect online course for you.

The Science of Parenting is a free course offered through the University of California San Diego, focusing on breaking down the facts, research, and statistics behind all those parenting recommendations.

As parents have grown savvier over the years, they’ve paid a steep price: There are now more opinions, rumors, false “truths,” and judgments about individual parenting styles than there have ever been before. That’s where this course shines.

The five-week syllabus tackles some big, often controversial issues—think breastfeeding, vaccinations, and homeschooling, for starters—but looks at each through scientific research, studies, and best practices.

It also teaches you how to apply your newfound knowledge about analytics and correlation to topics not presented in the course (so you can keep being a parenting genius long after it ends).

The course has a free "audit" option, with access to materials only during the 5-week course. For $49, you can upgrade to "verified" and gain lifetime access to materials, graded homework and exams, and a certificate of completion.

Best for Power Struggles : Positive Parenting Solutions


Positive Parenting Solutions

Positive Parenting Solutions

Key Specs
  • Price: $220 for basic plan (higher-cost options available)
  • Skills Taught: Minimizing power struggles; increasing family harmony
  • Duration: Self-paced with 1 year of access
Why We Chose It

Positive Parenting Solutions helps you work out a more peaceful give-and-take with your kids by teaching you what they’re thinking, how their brains work, and why they act the way they do.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Educates parents on the origin of power struggles

  • Combines child psychology with parenting strategies

  • Blueprints for tackling common issues

Cons
  • Basic pricing is affordable, but cost increases with additional features

  • Some of the best features are only included in the top tier package

Overview

Your kid wants to drink his milk out of a blue cup, but you only have a red one to offer them. The news sends them into a full-on tantrum, complete with red-faced screaming and body contortions on the kitchen floor.

What gives? Kids often feel powerless, so it only makes sense that they would push back sometimes in unexpected ways. But these battles can derail the peace in your house (not to mention your sanity).

If you’re finding that power struggles with your child have consumed your daily life, the seven-step course at Positive Parenting Solutions tackles them from the ground up. The class begins with lessons on child psychology and misbehavior, moves through routines, consequences, and backtalk, and ends with a plan for increasing harmony in your family.

It promises to help you through your current struggles with your kids and set you up for continued success in the future. The other benefit of this program is that the lessons are customizable within your price range: For the maximum amount of resources, it will cost you roughly $350, but it can be scaled down to less than $225 to fit a smaller budget.

Final Verdict

For a comprehensive approach to improving your parenting hosted by a well-known expert, Megan Leahy Parent Coach offers an uber-accessible class with extra online support via Facebook. If you need help getting your family life on track, The Unfrazzled Mom by Messy Motherhood is a masterclass in planning and organization; meanwhile, parents struggling to sort out truth from fact in the information age of modern parenting can brush up on their research and analysis skills with the free course offered by The Science of Parenting.

Compare the Best Online Parenting Classes

Online Parenting Classes Price Skills Taught Duration
Megan Leahy Parent Coach Best Overall $149/month with minimum of 6 months Conflict resolution; building stronger relationships 6 month membership
Peace at Home Parenting Solutions Best Value Free Family wellness; schedules and routines; stress management Self-paced
Crossroads of Parenting and Divorce by Active Parenting Best for Co-Parenting $80 Co-parenting peacefully; creating a new “normal” 4-6 hours, self-paced with 3 weeks of access
The Unfrazzled Mom by Messy Motherhood Best for Organization $99 Planning and organization; task management Lifetime access
Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids by Aha! Parenting Best for Stress Management $160 Emotional regulation; family relationships; discipline 11 weekly lectures with lifetime access
The Science of Parenting Best for Decision-Making Free Researching parenting trends; analyzing statistics; confident decision-making 3-5 hours per week for 5 weeks
Positive Parenting Solutions Best for Power Struggles $220 for basic plan (higher-cost options available) Minimizing power struggles; increasing family harmony Self-paced with 1 year of access

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Online Parenting Classes?

Online parenting classes teach the basics you need to know about raising your child. There are different online parenting classes for different topics. You can take a class that teaches you the basics of raising a newborn or one that gives you the specific skills you need to handle stressful situations as a parent. There are even classes that teach you how to build and maintain a positive relationship with your child. 

What Are Pros and Cons of Online Parenting Classes?

Taking parenting classes online gives you more flexibility since you can watch videos and access materials on your schedule without traveling to a class location at a specific time. However, not having a set day and time for class may not work for you if you have difficulty holding yourself accountable. Plus, distractions at home may interfere with focusing on these online classes for some parents.

And while some online parenting classes offer personal support via video calls, chats, or emails, others may fall short for parents who prefer in-person communication and face-to-face interaction.

How Much Do Online Parenting Classes Cost?

The cost of online parenting classes varies depending on the quality, amount of resources and instruction provided, level of interactivity and personal support, and length of the program. Some classes with limited access to videos and materials are completely free. Other, more comprehensive programs that include personal coaching can cost up to $500 or more. However, classes generally fall between $80 to $150. 

What Skills Are Taught in Parenting Classes?

Most parents struggle with some aspects of parenting, but it's not the same for everybody. If you find one particular stage difficult for you, such as potty training, discipline, or the teenage years, you can seek a course that specifically addresses those areas. Other skills include sleep training, parenting during divorce, and conflict resolution.

Are Parenting Classes Effective?

They can be, yes! The key is finding a class that addresses the areas of parenting you find difficult. Another important factor is ensuring that the instructor's or organization offering the class's values aligns with your family's values. For example, it might not be effective to take a parenting class about the "gentle parenting" approach if your family has a more discipline-focused philosophy.

Methodology

If you’re considering taking a parenting course, it’s probably because you need a little assistance to make your life easier. We don’t think finding that help should be out of anyone’s price range, so we opted for online courses that were generally affordable; some are free; others are less than $100, and some are a little pricier (but offer a significant number of resources and access to advice). We also selected courses focusing on the common “big ticket” problems most parents face: managing conflicts between kids and parents (or siblings), setting up schedules and routines that work for you, and increasing the overall happiness in your home.

Best Online Parenting Classes

Verywell / Designed by Amelia Manley

Article Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Zero to Three. National Parent Survey Report.

By Sarah Bradley
Sarah Bradley is a freelance health and parenting writer who has been published in Parents, the Washington Post, and more.