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Hanen 4 “I”s to Socialize™: Coaching Parents of Children with Autism and Social Communication Difficulties

If your role includes supporting the communication development of young children with autism or social communication difficulties, you know that involving parents effectively is key to your success.

Hanen 4 “I”s to Socialize™ is an intensive workshop designed to facilitate and enhance your efforts to involve families and to achieve the best possible outcomes for young children with social communication challenges.

The workshop provides:

  • A research-based protocol for evaluating children’s social communication and determining next steps – A comprehensive checklist helps you zero in on a child’s stage of social communication and identify what his or her next target may be.
  • A set of responsive interaction strategies drawn from Hanen’s evidence-based More Than Words® program – You’ll share these strategies with parents so they can facilitate their child’s ability to engage in extended, enjoyable interactions within everyday activities and routines.
  • A structured parent coaching framework that’s based on principles of adult learning – this consists of a clear, 4-step coaching model that considers the needs of adult learners and effectively supports parents’ application and generalization of strategies.

►NEW! Online workshops

The 4 “I”s to Socialize online workshop is offered over three weeks. The workshop is divided into two live modules per week – each module running for two and a half to three hours. Learning activities include a pre-workshop assignment, self-study components, online small group activities and live online sessions with the other participants, facilitated by the workshop instructor.

The online workshop provides the same training and experience as the in-person version, but there’s no need to travel – the workshop can all be done from home, on a computer or tablet. Participants will find this training invaluable in supporting their work in live one-to-one and face-to-face settings with families.

Why choose an online workshop?

“The ITSJC staff LOVED the 4 I’s training; they were so impressed with the professionalism, information, engaging format, and overall experience with Hanen! The staff have participated in other virtual trainings since the public health outbreak began in March and Hanen by far exceeds everyone’s expectations and really has set the bar for other organizations to model after. Kudos!!”

Monica L. Ross
M.S. Educational Leadership, M.S. CCC-SLP, ESDM Certified
Program Director
Infant Toddler Services of Johnson County

Workshop Highlights

  • Video examples of parents applying interaction strategies with their child at different stages of social communication
  • Video demonstrations of a clinician using the Hanen coaching model with a parent of a young child with autism
  • Ample opportunity for practice and self-reflection on the interaction strategies, as well as creating a plan for how to use the coaching framework to teach the strategies to parents.
  • A set of comprehensive resources that includes everything you need to effectively integrate the Hanen approach into your everyday work. Several handouts and videos will be downloadable online, while guidebooks can be purchased prior to the workshop.

By the end of this training, you’ll feel fully equipped to not only address the specific social communication needs of young children with autism, but also to empower parents in one-to-one, face-to-face to create the kind of interactions that lay the foundations for communication and language.


Hanen 4 “I”s to Socialize is for any professional who supports young children with autism or social communication difficulties and their families. Some examples include:

  • Early intervention providers
  • Early childhood intervention providers
  • Early childhood special educators
  • Special education teachers
  • Early intervention administrators
  • Occupational therapists
  • Physical therapists
  • Social workers/family therapists
  • Psychologists
  • Direct care staff/therapy assistants
  • Nurses/medical staff
  • Communication disorder assistants and speech-language pathology assistants

Learning objectives

By the end of this workshop, you’ll be able to:

  1. Describe the social communication development of children on the autism spectrum or with social communication disorder
  2. Determine a child’s stage of communication using the 4 “I”s Social Communication Checklist
  3. Identify appropriate social communication targets for children at each stage of social communication
  4. Describe evidence-based, responsive interaction strategies that are known to facilitate pleasurable, extended adult-child interactions
  5. Describe The Hanen Centre’s family-centered approach to early language intervention
  6. Apply the Hanen coaching framework to facilitate parents’ use of responsive interaction strategies with their child
  7. Utilize specific communication techniques that facilitate dialogue during interactions with parents

What participants have said...

“Everything learned came together in a way that made it make sense for delivering to parents. The coaching techniques were particularly helpful, and the have made me reflect on my practice.”

“Brilliant training! Feels like I have a wealth of new knowledge.”

“Fantastic training! I have really enjoyed the opportunity…will be really helpful when working with families.”

“Having the plans and something to refer to has given me better direction and purpose.”

“Today has given me a much different perspective of my practices at work.

Taking the 4 “I”s to Socialize™ Workshop

Visit the schedule pages below to find a training or register for email notification and help us plan.