University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center (UMSJMC) offers certified, expert-led childbirth and family education classes to help you and your family prepare for a healthy childbirth and “new family” experience. Beginning March 1, 2022, we will resume in-person classes while continuing to offer virtual/online options, as able, for your convenience.

All classes are held at The Barbara L. Posner Wellness & Support Center. All members of the community are welcome, but priority for in-person classes will be given to those participants who will be delivering at UM St. Joseph. We recommend starting classes between weeks 28 and 37 of pregnancy.

Learn more and view our current calendar of classes (online registration is available). Remember: We're here for you! If you have any questions, please contact the Childbirth and Family Education team at 410-337-1880 or SJMChildbirthEd@umm.edu..

Childbirth Education Class (In Person; Virtual Classes Coming Soon!)

Led by experienced labor and delivery registered nurses certified in childbirth education, this class covers basic coping and relaxation techniques, the important role of a support person, the stages of labor and pain relief options (medications, helpful labor positions, etc.), postpartum care and other important topics related to the birthing experience. We will also review what you can expect during your stay at UMSJMC. A virtual tour is also provided.

The in-person Childbirth Education class, offered as a three-week series or as a one-day weekend class, costs $60 to $75 per couple. The virtual class, offered as a three-week series, is $50 per couple.

Need to figure out which option is best for you? Please call the Family Education office at 410-337-1880 to learn more about the differences between our in-person and virtual classes.

Customized Childbirth Education Sessions

We’re flexible! If you are unable to attend our scheduled in-person classes or would prefer individualized instruction, one-on-one customized telephone or video-call consultations with a childbirth educator can be arranged for your convenience. We will provide you with all the information you need for these personal sessions. A virtual tour is also provided.

  • Cost: $100 per couple
  • Sessions will be scheduled at mutually convenient times for the participants and instructor
  • Program may include two or three sessions (depending on the topics being covered and session length)

For more about customized childbirth education, call us at 410-337-1880 or email us at SJMChildbirthEd@umm.edu.

Breastfeeding

Led by a certified lactation consultant, this two-and-a-half-hour class helps expectant parents learn the benefits of breastfeeding and offers helpful techniques and tips for breastfeeding success. Virtual and in-person options are available each month.

  • $20 per class (or free when you register for a Childbirth Education class)
  • Register for a Breastfeeding class

Baby Care Class

Led by our expert registered nurse educators, this weekend half-day or two-session class helps prepare expectant moms to bring their newborn home and care for their little one through their first year of life. We’ll review calming and soothing techniques, when to call your pediatrician, childproofing, infant CPR and choking prevention, general safety practices and more!

Breathing and Relaxation for Childbirth

Designed for expectant parents planning a low-intervention or natural childbirth, this class dives deep into important relaxation and breathing techniques for a smoother labor and delivery experience, be it at home or in a hospital setting.

Among other multiple sensory comfort strategies, you will learn about birth positions that can help you manage labor pain naturally.

Grandparents' Update

This course helps new grandparents get up to speed on modern approaches to newborn care to support new parents. You will learn about the latest health and safety concerns as they pertain to infants, including CPR tips and more. 

  • $10 per person (grandparents only)
  • If two grandparents want to attend the same class together, please register as individuals and then indicate you will be sitting together.
  • Register for Grandparents Update class

Coming Soon! Fatherhood 101: A New-Dad Playbook

In this class, our team of our family health experts helps new dads hone their parenting skills and take their newfound fatherhood to the next level. We will explore the importance—and impact—of fatherhood and provide tips that can help you excel in your new role. Topics of discussion will include work-life balance, bonding with your baby and your partner, adapting to your new role, birth support strategies, the pregnant dad, the effects of post-partum depression on dads and more.

  • $20 per person
  • Register for Fatherhood 101

Coming Soon! Understanding Your Pregnancy: A Prenatal Virtual Lunch and Learn

Before your first obstetrician (OB) appointment, join us for a virtual session to find out what to expect during your pregnancy. We’ll help you understand the basics of early pregnancy and give answers to expectant parents’ most frequently asked questions. We will also offer tips on how to approach your first OB appointment so you can make the most of your visit with your provider.

  • This session is FREE.
  • Sessions are held from noon to 1 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month.

To register, please call us at 410-337-1880 or email us at SJMChildbirthEd@umm.edu

Car Seat Safety Checks

We offer FREE car seat safety checks by certified child passenger safety technicians to help parents ensure their little one's safety during each car ride. Our safety checks take place at Long Green Volunteer Fire Department in Glen Arm, MD.

Contact Us

If you have questions or would like to speak with one of our childbirth educators, call us at 410-337-1880 or email us at SJMChildbirthEd@umm.edu.