About Hanen Conversational Styles
Everyone, even adults, have his or her own style of communicating. Some people are more shy and introverted and others love to talk and could do it all day long. Children who are in the initial stages of learning to speak are the same and some children’s communication styles can be more challenging to elicit language from especially children with language delays. Hanen have identified four different conversational styles. Below I will discuss each of these styles and in a follow up blog I will discuss some strategies that are most effective for each communication style.
The Sociable Child
Children with this communication style often initiate interactions constantly and are very responsive to other people’s initiations.
The Reluctant Child
Children with the reluctant style seldom initiate conversations and often do not engage in group activities with other children.
The Own Agenda Child
Children with their own agenda spend a lot of time playing by themselves. They appear to not be interested in interacting with other children or adults. These children sometimes initiate when they need something but often ignore a parent’s attempts to initiate play or conversation. This is a common stage for typically developing children when they desire some independence however they still enjoy some social situations and interactions.
The Passive Child
Passive children seldom respond to others or initiate conversations. They demonstrate little interest in people and objects around them. These children are difficult to engage in any type of interaction and if the child consistently displays this style of interaction, it reflects a possible developmental delay (Weitzman & Greenberg, 2002).
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For more information on this topic or any speech related fields, contact the ENT Clinic on 1300 123 368 and make an appointment with our speech pathologist Ashleigh Fattah.
Weitzman, E. & Greenberg, J; (2008). Learning Language and Loving It: A Guide to Promoting Children’s Social, Language and Literacy Development in Early Childhood Settings (Edition 2), The Hanen Centre.