Your child learns to communicate during the everyday interactions he has with the people he loves. Every moment you, as a parent, spend having fun and interacting with your child provides an opportunity to build his communication. Because language is learned in natural, daily activities and interactions, parents have a major role to play in helping a child whose language is delayed. It may seem like a challenging task, but it isn’t – the It Takes Two to Talk® Program shows you how.

About the It Takes Two to Talk program

It Takes Two to Talk is a program developed by The Hanen Centre for parents of young children (under age five) with language delays. A Hanen-certified speech-language pathologist leads the program, which is offered to a small group of parents.

The speech-language pathologist guides you every step of the way, helping you learn specific interaction strategies that can be applied in your daily interactions with your child. All these strategies are drawn from research, that has shown them to be effective in improving children’s language skills.

By learning in a small group with other parents, you get support and input from people who understand what you are going through. Not only do you walk away from the program armed with strategies that are proven to improve your child's language development, but you also gain a valuable support network of peers.

View Research Summary

Program Components

The It Takes Two to Talk Program takes place once a week over 13 weeks.

The program includes:

  • A pre-program consultation with the speech-language pathologist, which includes an assessment of your child and setting communication goals
  • Eight two and a half hour sessions for a small group of parents, led by the Hanen speech-language pathologist
  • Three individual video feedback sessions – you and your child are recorded while playing. Then you and the speech pathologist review and discuss the recording to see what’s working and how you can modify your use of the strategies to help your child
What you learn in an It Takes Two to Talk Program

When you join an It Takes Two to Talk program, you learn how to:

  • Identify your child’s stage and style of communication
  • Figure out what motivates your child to interact with you
  • Encourage your child to start interactions with you
  • Follow your child’s lead to encourage continued interaction
  • Help your child take turns and keep interactions going
  • Fine-tune the way you talk during interactions to build your child’s expression and understanding
  • Play and read books with your child to encourage interaction and conversation
The It Takes Two to Talk telepractice program

The Hanen Centre has developed a telepractice version of the It Takes Two to Talk Program, which means the entire program is offered online. The telepractice model allows you to attend the program from the comfort of your own home and interact with your child in an environment familiar to him.

A telepractice program is similar to taking an online class. The parent-only sessions are live, and you log in to a videoconferencing software that makes it easy to interact with your speech-language pathologist and the other parents in the group. There are separate video feedback sessions for just you and your child, when the speech pathologist records you interacting with your child while you apply the strategies you have learned. You and your speech-language pathologist then review and discuss the recording, which helps you identify what’s working well and what you can modify to help your child even more.

Technology needs

To participate in a telepractice program, you will need the following equipment:

  • A computer, iPad or a tablet (smartphones and cell phones do not have a large enough screen)
  • Webcam and microphone
  • High speed internet
  • Email access
  • Adobe reader (free download)
  • Printer or scanner or photo capture and transfer (if you want to print out the handouts)

You can make a bigger difference to your child's language skills when you join an It Takes Two to Talk Program. Find a Hanen speech-language pathologist to guide you today.

If you aren't already working with a Hanen certified speech-language pathologist, let us help you find one today.

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