Engaging Teens

Brief summary of program purpose

There's no doubt about it, parenting teenagers can be challenging. This is especially true as they can sometimes appear to be out of reach of the influence of their parents/carers.

Issues surrounding behavioural problems, unacceptable risk-taking, lack of motivation, and an unwillingness to fit in with the family's values, can make parenting tough, regularly leaving parents struggling with what to do.

Drawing on psychologist Michael Hawton's 30 years of experience, the Engaging Adolescents program is a practical guide to help you steer your teenager through the challenging times with confidence.

In this three week Engaging Teens workshop, you will gain a better understanding of your teen and will be provided with valuable strategies and tools to become effective in your communication, fostering a stronger relationship with your teenager.  Our facilitator will guide you through the program and provide easy-to-use techniques for parents and carers to use to enlist adolescents to manage their own behaviour problems and emotional reactions.

This workshop is relevant for parents/carers of children from the age of 13 which is when communication difficulties commonly begin and a new approach is needed. The skills you will learn will be appropriate throughout the teenage years.

Over three weeks, you'll be able to try out the strategies learnt in the workshop at home, and bring back feedback for further discussion and support. Investing a few hours now, will create a valuable road map for navigating the challenging teen years.

Topics covered:

  • Different parenting styles
  • Brain development, the fear response and age-appropriate behaviour
  • Strategies you can implement to promote more regulated, less emotional responses including:
    • Emotion coaching and 'Name it to tame it'
    • Focusing & Grounding exercises such as Body Mapping and the Anger Iceberg
    • Active listening skills and the importance of genuine praise
  • Circles of control and influence
  • Identifying big issues and how to have conversations around them
  • Tackling topics such as healthy sexual activity, alcohol and the importance of sleep
  • Parenting self-care

What you will learn:

  • To communicate more effectively with your teen
  • To better understand your teen
  • How to build a more positive relationship with your teen
  • Techniques to enlist teens to manage their own behaviour
  • Regulation of your emotions and how to help your teen manage their own
  • Strategies to deal with unacceptable behaviour exhibited by your teen
  • Practical and easy-to-use tools and strategies

Best suited to:

Parents of adolescents aged 13 to 17 years


The workshop is delivered over three weeks in two hour sessions.

Future dates to be scheduled. Please contact us if you are interested in participating in this program.


During COVID-19 restrictions in Victoria this workshop is being delivered using a secure, online platform that participants can access from anywhere in Australia.


$100 per person

$180 per couple

$80 concession

Limited spaces available.  Maximum number of participants is 20.

Acceptance into this program is subject to minimum enrolment numbers being achieved and/or maximum numbers being reached. Heartlinks reserves the right to discontinue service should the facilitator deem a participant to be better suited to an alternative form of support.

Bookings and more information:

For more information email heartlinks@familylife.com.au or call (03) 8599 5488