Being a parent is a gift, an incredible journey, a tremendous joy.

So why is parenting so hard?

Top 3 reasons direct from our parent community:

1.    Information Overload

So much information! There is so much to know about development. And there is so much changing about your child, all of the time. It is hard to figure out how to model and instill your values in a consistent, loving way at every age. Sure, we all value empathy, but what does that look like at every age? What should we expect to see from our kids at ages 4, 8 and 12?

Improv Parenting keeps up with the latest research. We integrate research into our teaching and tools, so you can be confident that you are trying things that are developmentally appropriate and well- grounded in science. We believe in growing wholehearted children, so our emphasis is on modeling and teaching empathy, listening, authenticity, interdependence, creativity, body confidence, curiosity and emotional self-regulation.

2. Disconnection

We all feel disconnected from our children at times – during particular routines of daily life, for entire weeks or throughout whole stages of life. And because of the nonstop demands of parenting we often feel disconnected from ourselves.

Improv Parenting provides opportunities to re-connect with your child and yourself through play. Our workshops, classes and camps give the structure, support and guidance you need to get out of your head and into your body and playful spirit. Relax, its good for you!

3. Fatigue

Even as we’re aware of the challenges, sometimes its simply too much to find the energy to seek information or to connect. We are physically and emotionally drained.

Improv Parenting offers tools and information that cut through the fatigue. We provide clear strategies and reassurances that help you stay grounded and maintain perspective, even through the tough, fatigued moments. We believe in quality of interaction over quantity, so forgive yourself those tired moments and let’s dig into the playful ones together!

What We Do

We play with adults and children of all ages, using improv games, storytelling, art projects, and mindful activities to practice saying “yes, and,” being present and collaborating. 

Value for parents:

more present // more connected to your kids // 

Value for kids:

They learn to solve problems for themselves // grow their ability to be interdependent // tap into their authentic selves and innate creativity

Improv helps us:

  • be in the moment
  • trust ourselves
  • set clear boundaries
  • respond instead of react
  • be authentic
  • relax and have fun

Parenting gems! Life lessons for your kids! Our camps, workshops and classes give you new tools, playful experiences and real connections.

What is Improv Parenting?

Being a parent is a gift, an incredible journey, a tremendous joy.


So why is parenting so hard?

 

The top 3 reasons, direct from our parent community:

Who We Are

We are experienced educators who love teaching and using play, creativity and spontaneity to grow, enhance relationships and bring on the fun. We teach playfully and creatively; our teachers are warm, present and connected. 

Keren Gudeman  Founder, Director & Teacher

As an athletic coach, classroom teacher, outdoor educator and parent of three I have a lot of experience improvising - I just didn't realize it. A few years ago (and because of the amazing Jen Scott) I took an improv class at Brave New Workshop. The games and exercises forced me to be in the moment and trust my instincts. And it was inspiring to observe others stepping into this unplanned, shared space and stumble around just like I did. And heck, we laughed a bunch too.

I am not an actor and like many people, public speaking and being on stage still scare me. Although performing improv is not my passion (and I deeply admire those loons who can do it), improv parenting is a deeply personal devotion. It is about playfully taking life seriously. There's so much to learn! And there are so many playful ways to learn it! 

I love meeting new people, connecting authentically, playing, creating stories and discovering together. I hope to play with you some day! 

If you want to know more about my background and experiences (resume) please visit this place

Jen Scott  Co-Founder, Teacher

Jen Scott is a performer, teacher, playwright and sometime musician. She's taught at the Brave New Workshop Student Union since 2001, and also teaches regularly at Children’s Theatre Company, Park Square Theatre and Pillsbury House Theatre. As a performer, she's worked with HUGE Theater, Walking Shadow Theater Company, Four Humors, the Science Museum of Minnesota, and others. Jen is also the mom of two; her eldest, Oscar, is three and transforms into a sometimes nice, sometimes mean robot regularly. It just sort of depends on the day. 

Seniz Yargici-Lennes Teacher

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Seniz is a mom, improvisor and Playworker with over 15 years of experience teaching, designing youth programs and managing arts integration initiatives in MN and NYC.  She has happily spent most of her career and life exploring meaningful applications of play.

Along with facilitating Playful Perspectives Workshops with parents and organizations throughout Minnesota, Seniz is the founder of Twin Cities Adventure Play, a founding member of the North American Adventure Play Association, and works with the US Play Coalition to coordinate, you guessed it, play activities for the annual conference on the value of play. Seniz is the Director of Teen Programs and performs, regularly, with HUGE Improv Theater in Minneapolis, teaches preschool in the mornings for Bright Prospects Cooperative Preschool, and sings wild harmonies in the local indy-pop band School for Girls. She enjoys coffee, travel, being upside down, playing games and exploring everything always.

Sarah Gioia Teacher

Sarah had a long career in local (mostly) and national (a bit) theater, directing over 80 shows as well as casting and dramaturging extensively.  She is mostly retired from all that glamour to be a full-time mama to her 6 year old son.  And to teach at Improv Parenting camps, of course!

Shelley Johnson Teacher

Shelley Johnson has been teaching for as long as she can remember whether in classrooms or wrangling her friends into makeshift desks during imaginary play as a child. She teaches preschool, theater, and improv and serves as the Education Director for Blackout Improv. Shelley believes in the power of storytelling, building relationships, and cultivating the skill of finding delight in all things. Improv has given her the tools to be a better playmate and teacher through "yes, anding" (which is not the same as giving in!), listening and collaborating. 

Alex Cleberg Teacher

Alex is a father of two and plays a scary monster, old timey sportscaster, and jungle gym for his kids. He has performed, coached, or taught improv for over a decade. He is an intercultural trainer at the University of Minnesota and an improv instructor at the Brave New Workshop.

Sami Dee Teacher

Krystianna Johnson Teacher