Supporting Language Development at Home


This topical guide will introduce you to important books, videos, and information resources available from the EI Clearinghouse and other sources. Contact us via online form or by phone (1-877-275-3227) to request a resource listed below (or ask your local public librarian). Note that some videos may be viewed online, and journal titles will take you to the publisher’s homepage.

dad holding toddler


Beyond baby talk: from speaking to spelling
Kenn Apel
Three Rivers, 2012
This book shows parents how to boost their child’s language development and literacy.
Call#: P 118 .A64 2012 

Busy toddler, happy mom: over 280 activities to engage your toddler in small motor, gross motor, crafts, language development, and sensory play
Gayle Jervis
CreateSpace, 2013
This book has many activities to promote language development at home as well as many other skills necessary for toddlers.
Call#: GV 183 .J488 2013

Choose your words: communicating with young children
Carol Garhart Mooney
Redleaf Press, 2018
This book is infused with current research on communicating with young children and their families. The text considers change and current culture in the United States as it affects language and little ones in the context of 2017, while respecting universal pieces that continue to be helpful.
Call#: LB 1033 .M59 2018

Core words for classroom and home: developing verbal communication skills
Jennifer Jacobs
Blue Lake Publishing, 2018
This book focuses on the most commonly used words for creating sentences and incorporates literacy, games, writing, art, and cooking activities that work within the home, school, and clinical settings.
Call#: WL 340.2 .J151 2018 

First words: a parent’s step by step guide to helping a child with speech and language delays
Barbara Levine Offenbacher
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2013
This book gives parents the information they need to allow them to stimulate their child’s speech and language. These skills can be used at home.
Call#: WL 340 .O321 2013  

It Takes Two to Talk: A Practical Guide for Parents of Children with Language Delays
Jan Pepper and Elaine Weitzman
Hanen Centre, 2017
This guide shows parents how to help their child communicate through talking during daily activities.
Call#: LB 1139 .L3 I88 2017  

Let’s Talk Together: Home Activities for Early Speech & Language Development
Cory Poland and Amy Chouinard
Talking Child, 2008
This book provides caregivers and parents with over 55 activities that are designed to enrich children’s speech and language abilities.
Call#: LB 1139.5 .L35 .P762 2008  

My toddler’s first words : a step-by-step guide to jump-start, track, and expand your toddler’s language
Kimberly Scanlon
Scanlon Speech Therapy, 2019
With expert guidance and specific instructions and numerous examples, you will learn how to appropriately stimulate and catapult your toddler’s communication.
Call#: LB 1139 .Sca636 2019

Raising a Talker: Easy activities for birth to age 3
Renate Zangl
Gryphon House, 2014
This book provides activities to promote language development and information on how to get your child to talk.
Call#: P 118 .Z165 2014

Small Talk: how to develop your child’s language skills from birth to age four
Nicola Lathey
The Experiment, 2014
This book analyzes the six stages of language learning in children and discusses how to encourage babbling, develop verbal communication, and recognize when there is cause for concern that skills may not be developing properly.
Call#: P 118.5 .L38 2014

Talk to Me, Baby!: How You Can Support Young Children’s Language Development
Betty Bardige
Brookes Publishing, 2009
This easy-to-read book shows parents how to talk to and play with children in ways that support their emerging language skills.
Call#: LB 1139 .L3 .B246 2009
Also available as an eBook

Talking With Your Toddler: 75 Fun Activities and Interactive Games That Teach Your Child to Talk
Teresa Laikko and Laura Laikko
Ulysses Press, 2016
This book teaches you how to stimulate speech using everyday play. It makes learning to talk fun and engaging for your child using easy-to-follow activities.
Call#: P 118.5 .L35 2016  
Also available as an eBook


It Takes Two to Talk
126 min; DVD
Hanen Centre, 2006
This companion to the It Takes Two to Talk book provides video examples of activities parents and professionals can use to develop the language and communication skills of young children.
Call#: LB 1139 .L3 .I88 2006

Celebrating language and literacy for infants, toddlers & twos: Strategies for early language and literacy development
11 min; DVD
Teaching Strategies, 2008
The videos discuss how to help infants and toddlers develop early literacy skills. The user’s guide explains how to use the videos in professional development and family workshops.
Call#: P 118 .C392 2008

Language & Literacy Development
23 Min; DVD
Learning Seed, 2012
his observation of preschoolers shows them engaged in activities that exemplify the extraordinary advancements in language and literacy that children make at this age.
Call#: LB 1731.6 .L364 2012


American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA)
Professional association for speech-language pathologists and audiologists. Multiple resources for professionals.
Members: 800-498-2071; Non-Member: 800-638-8255


Young Exceptional Children, 20(1), 41-50
Coaching Parents to Use Naturalistic Language and Communication Strategies
Yusuf Akamoglu & Laurie Dinnebiel, 2015
The purpose of this article is to describe family coaching strategies and their implementation features to teach parents to incorporate specific NT strategies into their family routines and activities

Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, 35(6), 1156-1162
Parental Reading to Infants Improves Language Score: A Rural Family Medicine Intervention
Adam Franks, et al., 2022
Early, consistent reading demonstrates improved language scores as early as 9 months of age. This article discusses the results of a small, single institution study that looked at how setting minimal daily reading expectations impacted daily reading compliance early in life. Available online.

Web Resources

Activities to Encourage Speech and Language Development
This page offers age-appropriate ways that parents can engage their young children to help develop speech and language abilities.

Encouraging Bilingual Babies and Toddlers (EIC)
A parent-friendly tip sheet created by the Illinois Early Intervention Clearinghouse. Also available in Spanish.

Everyday Early Intervention Tip Sheet Series (EIC)
This series of tip sheets provides ideas on ways to work on EI outcomes and activities within daily routines. All are also available in Spanish.

How I Communicate (EIC)
A parent-friendly tip sheet created by the Illinois Early Intervention Clearinghouse. Also available in Spanish.

How I Understand (EIC)
A parent-friendly tip sheet created by the Illinois Early Intervention Clearinghouse. Also available in Spanish.

Talk Together (IEL)
A parent-friendly tip sheet created by the Illinois Early Learning Project. Also available in Spanish, Polish, Korean, Chinese, Arabic, and French.

Supporting Dual Language Learners in Early Childhood (EIC)
This resource guide includes books, articles, videos, and more to help adults support young dual language learners.

Things to Do While You’re Waiting: Language and Literacy (IEL)
A parent-friendly tip sheet created by the Illinois Early Learning Project. Also available in Spanish and Polish

Communicating With Baby: Tips and Milestones From Birth to Age 5
This free toolkit details communication skills that parents should expect to see in their child by age and tips for how to support children’s development through daily reading. PDFs also in Spanish.

When to Take Your Child to the SLP
This guide will take you through disorders for which speech, language, or communication issues are a component and offer resources that you can use to educate yourself on how speech therapy can help your child.

Identify the Signs of Communication Disorders
ASHA’s Identify the Signs campaign educates about typical communication development as well as the early warning signs of speech, language, and hearing disorders.

Kitchen Conversation: Speech Therapy at Home
This video is part of the Kitchen Conversation webinar series and provides information about virtual therapy and ideas on how to support young children by incorporating speech/language goals into everyday activities.

Read with Your Toddler
This is a tip sheet about reading to your toddler to promote language.

Talk, Listen, and Learn
This tip sheet has information on building language through talking with your toddler. Also available in Spanish, Polish, Korean, Chinese, Arabic, and French.

Using Music to Support Language Development in Children with Hearing Loss
Children with hearing loss can benefit from exposure to music. This article describes different types of hearing loss, the benefits of music for children with hearing loss, using music in speech therapy, and specific activities for children that incorporate music.