Welcome! My name is Sarah Markel.
I am a parenting and child development consultant — based in Fort Collins, Colorado — who works with families from all walks of life. I provide Respectful Parenting play groups, a Newborn Masterclass, a Tackling Tantrums course, as well as one-on-one consultations (in-person and virtual).
I have also worked for 15+ years as a pediatric speech-language pathologist providing in-home therapy for families facing a wide range of developmental issues, including infants transitioning home from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) as part of Larimer County’s Infant Support Team. I have helped families with feeding issues, picky eating, potty training, sleep, tantrums, sibling dynamics – and, of course, speech and language development.
How I got here …
In my work as a speech pathologist, much of my therapy time consists of sitting on a family’s living room floor, demonstrating techniques and talking through strategies with the parents. While speech therapists are trained to help communication and feeding, I found that parents inevitably asked me to assist them with a wide range of other issues.
For years, I pieced together strategies to troubleshoot these issues, but I never felt like I had a unified philosophy to guide me. In 2017, I was introduced to Janet Lansbury’s podcast “Unruffled”. Her philosophy is sometimes referred to as “Respectful Parenting”, also known as the “RIE® approach”. RIE® stands for Resources for Infant Educarers® and is a parent education organization founded by child development expert Magda Gerber.
I immediately saw that the Respectful Parenting philosophy aligned with what I knew to be true from my experience working with families — and provided an overall philosophy that “just made sense”. I began to study RIE® in earnest (completing the RIE® Foundations Course), use its techniques with my own son, and pass along its principles to my clients.
My goal is to help make parenting easier and more enjoyable. My Instagram account — Raised.With.Respect — provides parents with practical tips and advice across a range of issues. I also offer play groups, virtual courses (Newborn Masterclass and Tackling Tantrums), and private consultation for families to learn more about the philosophy. If you have a question or comment, feel free to contact me.