More Than Words® — The Hanen Program® for Parents of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder or Social Communication Difficulties

Program Description

More Than Words® is a parent education program developed by the Hanen Centre®. The following is from the Hanen Centre®’s website (www.hanen.org) regarding the More Than Words® program:

The More Than Words Program was designed specifically for parents of children ages 5 and under on the autism spectrum and with other social communication difficulties. Addressing the unique needs of these children, the program provides parents with the tools, strategies and support they need to help their children reach their full communication potential.

More Than Words does this by empowering you to help your child reach the following three goals:

  1. Improved social communication and back-and-forth interactions
  2. Improved play skills
  3. Improved imitation skills

Here are some of the valuable things you’ll learn when you attend the More Than Words Program:

  • What motivates your child to communicate
  • How to use your knowledge about your child to set appropriate and realistic goals
  • How to make interactions with your child last longer
  • Tips for using pictures and print to help your child’s understanding
  • Strategies for how to talk so that your child understands you
  • Strategies for developing your child’s play skills
  • Ways to help your child make friends

Program Curriculum

More Than Words® consists of three main components:

  • Pre-program consultation: individual visit with the family which includes an initial assessment of social communication skills and baseline video of caregiver-child interaction
  • 8 group training sessions: Parents/caregivers attend interactive group sessions without their children to learn about social communication development and strategies to use with their children
  • 3 individual video feedback visits for each family: a chance for parents/caregivers to get direct coaching from the therapist as they practice implementing the strategies with their children present

*Families are required to participate in all three components.