Expecting a Baby?
In-Person and Online Class Options Available
The birth of a baby can be a very exciting time. It is also filled with lots of questions and decisions. The Family Birthplace at Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids partners with Spectrum Health Healthier Communities to offer a variety of in-person and online educational programs to help you feel prepared and confident as you move into your new role as a parent. Our prenatal and parenting classes are taught by certified childbirth educators. Class size is limited and classes fill quickly, so try to schedule early in your pregnancy for the best options. If you need help deciding which classes to take, review the suggested list below. We encourage your support person to attend as well. For more information or to schedule a class, call 616.391.5000, option 1.
For class and event cancellations and closing information, please visit spectrumhealth.org/cancellations or call 616.391.5000, option 3. Time permitting, local media sources will be contacted. Participants are always encouraged to use their own judgment to assess road conditions and travel safety in their area.
In-Person Class Offerings:
- Preparing for Childbirth Class: attend weekly sessions like the 4-week, 2-week, weekend or teen sessions (Call for classes in Spanish or other non-English languages.) Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class in your seventh - eighth month of pregnancy.
- Breastfeeding Class: Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class during months seven - eight of pregnancy.
- Prenatal Yoga: Sign up and take this class anytime during pregnancy.
- Infant/Child CPR and Other Emergencies: Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class during months seven - eight of pregnancy. This class can also be taken after the birth of your baby.
- Family Birthplace Tour : Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend during months seven - eight of pregnancy.
- Dads on Deck: dads-to-be learn what to expect before and after baby is born
- Grandparenting Journey: grandparents learn ways to support the family before and after baby is born.
- 3-5 Year Old Sibling Class for Big Brother, Big Sister: prepare big brothers and sisters for the new arrival.
- 6-9 Year Old Sibling Class for Big Brother, Big Sister: prepare big brothers and sisters for the new arrival.
- Newborn Care Class: attend if you are not participating in the Preparing for Childbirth Class or if you are adopting an infant. Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class during months six - eight of pregnancy.
- Pointers From a Pediatrician for Expectant Parents: Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class during months seven - eight of pregnancy.
- Cesarean Birth Class
- Refresher Class: review information about labor and delivery, breathing patterns, comfort measures, relaxation techniques and infant care updates. Sign up for this class after your third month of pregnancy to attend a class during months seven - eight of pregnancy.
- Twins, Triplets & More
Support GroupsSpectrum Health Healthier Communities offers support to new mothers facing challenges with breastfeeding and extended baby blues or postpartum depression. These support groups are free and no registration is required.
- Breastfeeding support: join our breastfeeding group (Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays) and connect with other mothers and certified lactation consultants or take advantage of the Family Birthplace’s inpatient and outpatient support from board-certified lactation consultants and counselors
- Postpartum emotional support: help with baby blues, depression or concerns about the demands and adjustments of motherhood
Virtual Classes and Support Options:
Spectrum Health Healthier Communities is happy to provide online pregnancy and childbirth classes during the COVID-19 outbreak. Please review the eClass opportunities below, preview the course and then click on the green button to register for online classes.
Understanding Birth eClass
This interactive online course covers essential information on labor and more, and highlights ways partners can help throughout the process. You’ll also get a sense of what labor is really like as you watch several birth stories. You’ll even have an opportunity to create your own birth plan! Topics covered include: Pregnancy, Labor, Birth Stories, Comfort Techniques, Medical Procedures, Cesarean Birth, Newborns and Postpartum.
Understanding Breastfeeding eClass
This interactive online course covers the essentials of breastfeeding, including clear animation and plenty of video examples. It lets you know when to call for help and includes partner tips throughout. You will also have the opportunity to track feedings with an easy-to-use tracker! Topics covered include: How Breastfeeding Works, How to Breastfeed, When to Feed Your Baby, Getting Enough Milk, Breast Care and Breastfeeding Lifestyle.
Understanding Infant & Child Safety eClass
Statistics that show infants and children are most often injured in homes and cars. This can be scary for any new parent. Do you know all the ways you can reduce your child’s risk of being hurt from a preventable accident? Learn life-saving information by taking this online safety class! Topics covered include: Car Safety, Safe Baby Care, Safety Products, Home Safety, Poisons, Infant CPR, First Aid and more.
Understanding Mother & Baby Care eClass
This interactive online course covers essential information for the first two weeks after birth, including taking care of yourself, caring for your newborn, and feeding your baby. It also highlights important warning signs so you know when to call for help. Topics covered include: Baby Care, Feeding Your Baby and Mother Care.
Understanding Your Newborn eClass
This interactive online course covers essential information for the first six weeks and beyond, including clear video examples of bathing, feeding and diapering, and lets you know when to call the doctor. You will also stay organized with a variety of helpful checklists and trackers! Topics covered include: Newborn Traits, Newborn Behaviors, Crying and Comforting, Feeding, Diapering, Bathing, Nail Care & Dressing, Newborn Health and Newborn Safety.
Virtual Family Birthplace Tour
View a virtual tour of Butterworth Hospital's Family Birthplace
Prenatal Yoga: Free Video Sessions Available on YouTube
View free Prenatal Yoga video sessions on Spectrum Health's YouTube channel
Virtual Postpartum Depression Support Group - Tuesdays at 7 p.m.
Are you experiencing any of the following?
- Difficulty sleeping or staying asleep
- Loss of appetite
- Feeling anxious/irritable/frustrated; “little things set you off”
- Frequent crying and feeling sad
If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, please know that you are not alone. Spectrum Health offers a free, virtual support group during the COVID-19 outbreak for mothers who are experiencing unexpected and challenging emotions in the early months of parenthood.
Registration is required. Register online at onlineregistrationcenter.com/PPDVirtualGroup