So, what is the point of Antenatal Classes anyway?
In our modern world and for the modern woman, pregnancy doesn’t slip into our lives conveniently and subtly. In fact, it can ruin our carefully organised and controlled worlds – unless we make adjustments and intentionally plan for a healthy pregnancy and a fantastic future with our children.
One of the best ways to prepare for the many unknowns ahead of you once you are expecting a baby, is to sign up for an antenatal class. Even if you are a doctor, nurse or midwife professionally, when YOU are the mother or father expecting the baby, you need time and space to prepare mentally, emotionally and physically. Possibly the greatest surprise benefit couples experience from an antenatal course that they didn’t necessarily expect, is that it gives them dedicated bonding time as a couple to chat and plan and discuss their expectations of how life will change with an extra family member around. NOW what if you could enjoy the benefits of such a course but all from your laptop, iPad or even smartphone??!! Just Engage offers a 6 week online antenatal course with a team of lecturers, personal mentorship and networking opportunities… The Just Engage course content can only be accessed by members on the course. They each have a username and password so they can log in from the Homepage. This content is also continually evolving as new specialists are included and new videos are added but we work with a 6 Module framework focusing on a different theme each week / module. Here is the outline as it stands:
Module 1 – Health in Pregnancy
Module 2 – Labour
Module 3 – Postnatal Care and Breastfeeding
Module 4 – Inductions, Elective and Emergency Caesarians
Module 5 – Parenting
Module 6 – Life After the Birth
What is the benefit of doing the course online?
The greatest advantage, of course, is TIME. A new course begins the first Monday of every month and once you have registered and paid, you can log in to the course you signed up for whenever it is convenient and just carry on from wherever you left off. It is designed with the working mom or the wife of a working, traveling spouse in mind. The aim is to make antenatal education accessible and even enjoyable! The course fits in to your schedule rather than you trying to attend a class at a set time each week. There is about 90 minutes of video footage to get through each week as opposed to 3-4 hours per week with a traditional class so it is much more time efficient. The lectures are deliberately kept to a basic 20 minute average length so they are succinct and to the point!
Isn’t online education very lonely? How do I meet other people having babies at similar times to me?
Just Engage gives you the best of both worlds: you can process the information on your own and in your own way, but you have access to an entire online community who would be keen to discuss topics and share resources with you. As you can see, after each video clip, members comment on the clip or raise questions or concerns or even post helpful links they have found that others might want to read. Members are known to each other only by their username but they can share as much or as little personal information as they feel comfortable with. They can use this stream to arrange get-togethers or suggest events to attend etc. There is an emphasis on social networking and support. Members are encouraged to follow Just Engage on Facebook and Twitter for updates, giveaway details, latest blogposts and birth news from members. Many people, especially men, find traditional antenatal classes awkward and avoid them as much as possible! Now it can actually be a bonding time for you as a couple in the comfort of your home, helping you to deepen your relationship and strengthen your team dynamic as you prepare for a major life adjustment. We aim to cover topics related to far more than just pregnancy and labour. Newborn Care and Life after the birth are major themes in the later modules and these topics hopefully inspire great conversations and “strategic planning” for an expecting couple! The increasingly popular blog is updated weekly with a new post either pertaining to Sharon raising her 3 boys or a service or product relevant to expecting parents.
How can I trust the content?
The Just Engage team consists of a number of experts or specialists in their field. You can read more about them here Each lecturer covers the topics they are passionate about and Sharon, a lecturer herself, mentors the members of the groups through their course. You can address any question at any lecturer at any time and Sharon will ensure you get an answer sent back to you. Many courses are run by 1 professional and you are only exposed to his or her opinion on all subjects but pregnancy, birth and parenthood are major milestones in our lives which require the expertise of a wider community.
What does it cost and how do I sign up?
Each 6 week course costs R550 per couple. Follow these simple steps:
- Go to the sign-up page of the Just Engage website
- Fill out the registration form and specify which month you’d like to begin your course.
- The system will send you an e-mail to activate your account. You’ll then be directed to the payment page and here, you have 3 options: EFT, Paypal or Credit Card.
- You’ll get a confirmation e-mail once you have paid and Sharon will follow up with more administrative details.