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Why We Love the Hanen Program

Jul 09th, 2020 | by Justine Navidbakhsh, CCC-SLP
Justine Navidbakhsh, CCC-SLP

Justine Navidbakhsh, CCC-SLP

July 09th, 2020

The Hanen Program: Involving Parents in Child Therapy

Calling all parents! The Hanen Program focuses on helping parents and other caregivers learn how to support children’s language, literacy, and social skills throughout everyday activities. We, as speech-language pathologists, need you! Did you know that you are the best therapist for your little?! Let me tell you why… YOU are your kiddo’s first teacher, YOU are intrinsically motivated to help your little, YOU are a constant in your child’s everyday environment, YOU can use everyday interactions as a context for learning, and YOU are able to promote generalization of language skills!! (Rakap et al., 2014).  

We, as SLP’s, treat your littles for one to two hours of language therapy a week and that likely is not enough. Recruiting and training you to be our partners (or should I say… “parents”) in crime in your kiddos’ language acquisition is essential. And this is exactly why we LOVE the Hanen Program! 

Hanen offers a variety of different programs based on your kiddo’s needs: 

  1. It Takes Two to Talk – The Hanen Program for Parents of Children with Language Delays. 
  2. Target Word – The Hanen Program for Parents of Children who are Late Talkers. 
  3. More Than Words – The Hanen Program for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder or Social Communication Difficulties. 
  4. TalkAbility – The Hanen Program for Parents of Verbal Children on the Autism Spectrum.
  5. The Hanen I’m Ready! Program for Building Early Literacy in the Home.  

 

Why We Love the Hanen Program   

Although each program caters to kiddos and families with different needs they all have the same WONDERFUL POSITIVES listed below!

  • The Hanen Program (as a whole) caters to a large range of populations. It is all-inclusive in that there is a program for communicators at ALL different levels! 
  • Hanen EMPOWERS parents to help their littles reach their communication goals by making it easy to carry out activities at home by providing a variety of examples and pictures throughout their books. Multiple examples are provided, and activities are broken down based on the child’s communication stage. 
  • Hanen uses acronyms to teach their main concepts making it easy for parents to remember the steps of what they need to do when they are working/playing with their child. 
  • Hanen is an evidence-based and reputable program. 
  • The Hanen programs take bilingualism into account and gives recommendations for communication at home based on current research. 
  • The Hanen programs are designed to train parents in small personalized groups where a Hanen Certified speech-language pathologist leads the program. 
  • The Hanen programs provide individual consultation appointments/parent coaching with the Hanen SLP to discuss how to fine-tune the information for their child. 
  • Gives parents the opportunity to connect with and support other parents. 

Benefits of Parent-Implemented Intervention

On top of all the positives that the Hanen Programs offer, research has shown that parents in parent-implemented intervention demonstrated improved use of language-facilitating strategies and decreased stress levels. Additionally, it was found that although both parent- and clinician-implemented intervention demonstrate positive child outcomes, parent-implemented intervention had superior outcomes in areas other than expressive language—for example, other language skills such as receptive outcomes (DeVeney et al., 2017). 

With all that being said…parents, “Help me help you!” –Jerry McGuire and all the pediatric SLP’s out there.

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About the Author 

It’s easy to see Justine’s passion and excitement for pediatric speech pathology. Her love for working with the pediatric population began with a background working as a behavioral therapist and infant stimulation therapist with children with a variety of needs. Justine believes that therapy should be enjoyable, and a place where development and progress are facilitated through fun, engaging and meaningful learning opportunities! When she’s not playing with kids, Justine loves listening/playing/watching live music, traveling, and trying all different kinds of cuisines/restaurants! 

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