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The RIE Pathway

Are you interested in teaching adults about more caring, respectful, joyful ways of working with children? RIE® has developed several amazing certified programs for sharing this approach with the world: RIE® Parent Infant Guidance™ classes, RIE® Before Baby™, RIE® Nurturing Nanny™, and RIE® Foundations™.


If your goal is to use the RIE Approach to care for children, the RIE® Foundations course is all you will need and is open to everyone, but if you want to teach adults, you should consider becoming an Associate. RIE has developed a unique, mentorship-based Pathway to train Associates to teach this approach to others. 

Here is how it works.


As the Pathway is a mentorship-based program, availability is limited. Each Foundations instructor has a few opportunities a year to nominate a Foundations student for the Pathway. Students who complete Foundations and decide they would like to become an Associate should let their instructors know of their interest. 

Foundations instructors sometimes have to make hard decisions about who to nominate each year, as there are always many excellent candidates. Here are a few of the baseline qualities instructors look for in their students, as demonstrated by their engagement in the course: 

  • a deep knowledge and appreciation of the approach

  • a deep interest and commitment in the work of the RIE organization 

  • an interest in sharing this work with parents and professionals

  • experience in mentoring, teaching, or working in groups with adults

  • a basic education of child development, usually from college courses in the field

  • interpersonal communication skills in working with people in a respectful, sensitive, and articulate manner

If your instructor feels that you meet these criteria, you may be nominated for the Practicum.


The goal of the Practicum is for the student to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of our approach by modeling it with infants, and by interacting respectfully with parents. During the Practicum, you will learn from a mentor over a period of around twelve months. The length varies depending on each person's individual learning. 


Depending on your geographical location and goals, there are a few different models for the Practicum. If you live near an Associate who is currently teaching RIE Parent Infant Guidance classes, you may assist in teaching those classes once or twice a week. If you are currently working in group care, your mentor will observe and guide your practice either in person or virtually via recordings. You might also form your own parent child group and host classes for that group, with your mentor observing and guiding your progress each week. 

The Practicum costs $1500.


Students who complete the Practicum may move on to the Internship. The goal of the Internship is to give you practice in educating other adults about this approach. During this phase, you will assist in teaching in at least three separate Foundations courses. The instructor for the course serves as your mentor during the course. Internships may be done in person, during online Foundations courses, or some combination. 

The Internship costs $1000.

Joining the Alliance of Associates

Students who complete the Internship are considered RIE Graduates and are invited to join the Alliance of RIE Associates. We have Associates from all over the world who meet regularly to discuss our practice, receive further training, and support each other. Associates renew their membership each year and pay a small membership fee.

Teaching Certified Courses

Associates may apply to teach each of the certified courses. It is a simple application process that involves requesting recommendation letters from your mentors in the Pathway. Once your application is approved, you may teach the relevant certified course. A small portion of each student's tuition in your courses will go back to RIE. In addition to teaching the certified courses, many Associates share the approach in other ways such as consulting with childcare programs, offering coaching to parents, or serving on RIE's board of directors or various committees. This is a powerful way to make a difference for infants and toddlers. 

If being an Associate sounds like the career for you, the first step is to sign up for a RIE Foundations course. Discuss your goals with your instructor so they can be your guide in this individualized process. 

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