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Tips for Parents

Any time is a good time to help your child learn language and literacy skills! Hanen Tips for Parents can help you turn any activity you do with your child into an opportunity to build his skills – and to have fun while you’re doing it!

All Hanen tips are based on current research which shows that parents have the power to boost their children’s language and literacy development when they:

  • Make it easy for their child to start conversations
  • Respond with interest to whatever their child tells them, with or without words
  • Talk frequently with their child about things of interest to the child
  • Have conversations with their child that go back and forth a number of times
  • Talk at a level that their child can understand and learn from (not too complex or too simple)
  • Expose their child to print in a variety of ways, especially with books

Hanen Tips for Parents are divided into three sections based on particular stages of language development, so choose the option below that best describes what your child is doing now.

Tips for parents of young children who communicate without words

These tips are for parents of children who communicate using a combination of sounds, gestures (e.g. pointing, shaking head for “no”, waving “bye”) and eye gaze (looking at you and then at what he is “talking” about). These children are sending clear messages, just not with words.

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Tips for parents of children who have just started talking

These tips are for parents of children who have started to use single words or who have started to put two words together (e.g. “dog” or “Mommy go”)

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Tips for parents of children who talk in sentences

These tips are for parents of children who talk in sentences consisting of a few or many words.

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Remember! The most important part of using Hanen tips is to have fun with your child!