Models & Principles of Formula 4 Parenting

Parenting Judgement Decision Making Model

The parenting model on which the Parenting Judgement Indicator (PJI) is based can be found by following this link - Decision Making Model for Parents and Carers.

Mother in consensus with daughter
Mother in consensus with daughter

The model describes four main approaches the parent can use when discussing an issue with their children:

  • The Directive Style - this is where the parent decides what will happen, based upon their own ideas.
  • The Consulting Style - here the parent asks the children for their ideas and suggestions before making the decision.

The Directive and Consulting styles are used when the parent wants to keep in control of the situation.

  • The Participative Style - this is where the children and parents decide together about what will happen.
  • The Delegative Style - here the parent gives the children responsibility to decide what will happen.

The Participative and Delegative styles are empowering to children for the parents release control.

The decision making model encourages parents to think more flexibly about the way they use their power as parents in their relationship with their children. By pairing up the styles in this way it asks the parent to consider the appropriateness of holding on to control when there might be opportunity for equalising or even releasing control.

However, the styles can also be paired in another way. The Directive and Delegative styles are similar because they both emphasise getting on with the task, getting the decision made and getting things done. On the other hand, the Consulting and Participative styles focus on the involvement of the children in decision making - on active collaboration with children so their voice is heard and listened to!

The pairing of the styles into the four orientations described can be helpfully seen by following this link - Parenting Decision Making Orientations.

When the model is displayed in this way, as one international commentator recently said, 'We found your model doing online research ... and did fairly in-depth analysis of multiple models ... and found yours to convey the greatest depth of understanding in the least amount of explanation.' It is simple enough for all parents to find it accessible and understandable, yet complex enough for it to have depth of meaning and potential for parenting development.

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