Parents learn to help children with language delays

Image of mom with child
Kyler Clark interacts with his mom, Naomi, as she implements strategies she learned in the CPD's "It Takes Two to Talk" class.

It’s hard enough to communicate with a toddler, but it can feel almost impossible when that child has a developmental delay or disability. Now, there is help for frustrated parents.

The Up to 3 program at Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities has started a class to teach parents how to help their children communicate and connect with the world. Eight parents are currently enrolled in the class.

The “It Takes Two to Talk” parent training program was designed by the Hanen Centre, a not-for-profit charitable organization in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and is taught by Up to 3 speech-language pathologists Jessica Nielsen and Jocelyn Matheson.

“This is a great course to learn how to teach children to communicate,” Nielsen said.

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CPD by the numbers

In the last 10 years, the Autism Support Services: Education, Research and Training (ASSERT) preschool has served 50 families and trained more than 100 special education professionals in 14 Utah school districts.

Save the Date! ASSERT plans reunion party

Image of two children with teacher.
Two students in the ASSERT preschool practice social language skills.

The ASSERT preschool classroom is a place where everyday tasks are broken down into the smallest possible steps, where the tiniest victories are celebrated and monumental obstacles are conquered one baby-step at a time.

Autism Support Services: Education, Research and Training (ASSERT) is a program at Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities for preschool-age children on the autism spectrum.

ASSERT uses applied behavioral analysis to change the negative behaviors of children with autism, said Lyndsay Nix, ASSERT program coordinator. The preschool is in session year-round, with two-week breaks at the beginning of June and the end of August.

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The CPD's ASSERT preschool is for children aged 3-5 on the autism spectrum.

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