On Demand

The Power of Communication and Connection at Mealtime

with Stephanie Cohen, M.A., CCC-SLP, CLC


Register $75

Ready to sign up?

Course Description

Effective communication establishes connection, supports the strengthening of relationships between parents and children, and supports a child’s ability to learn and grow at mealtimes.

At mealtime, behavior is communication. A child’s behavior communicates how they are feeling about their experience, including whether or not they feel safe and ready for learning. When caregivers are able to learn and understand a child’s cues and communication and responds supportively, trust grows and truly responsive feeding is possible. 

In this talk,  we will view over 25 videos to enhance our discussion about the different ways in which both caregivers and children might communicate how they feel at different stages in the feeding relationship. We will discuss how past experiences influence present readiness for learning at the table, how to use communication to support a child’s self-regulation and participation in sensorimotor learning opportunities, how to repair communication breakdowns at mealtimes, and why prioritizing understanding and connection must be our starting point in feeding therapy. We will also discuss effective communication between professionals and caregivers as a supportive foundation for the therapeutic process. 

In this 2.75-hour webinar, you will learn to:

  • Understand how to interpret verbal and non-verbal communication at mealtime with infants and toddlers

  • Recognize how a child's communication reflects their comfort, felt safety, readiness for learning, and internal motivation

  • Apply strategies for repairing communication breakdowns and helping children maintain self-regulation and readiness for learning at mealtimes

  • More effectively communicate with parents in order to build trust and the therapeutic alliance


This intermediate level course is appropriate for OTs, SLPs, PTs, assistants, educators, early intervention providers, parents/caregivers, and other professionals (social workers, nurses, registered dietitians, etc.) working with children with feeding challenges. Please contact us at [email protected] with any needs regarding accommodations. 

CEU Info

Certificates will be issued verifying participation in 2.75 hours of continuing education once you complete the quiz and achieve a 100% score. Check with your professional organizations licensing bodies to determine exactly what may be accepted for you. This course is eligible for ASHA’s professional development hour requirements. You will not require ASHA pre-approval for this. See here [https://www.asha.org/certification/FactDef/] for more information. This course is eligible for AOTA credits. Please check your state’s guidelines for specific information about this continuing education activity may apply to your state’s CEU guidelines.


Founder and Senior Instructor Stephanie Cohen, M.A., CCC-SLP, CLC

Stephanie Cohen is a speech-language pathologist and lactation counselor in private practice who has worked with children with complex medical needs and their families for more than 20 years. Stephanie has advanced training in feeding and swallowing disorders; she specializes in working with the 0-3 population and is passionate about helping families of children with feeding and swallowing disorders find ways to make mealtimes more successful and enjoyable. Stephanie has a bachelor of arts and a master of science degree from Northwestern University. She is a credentialed evaluator and provider in IL Early Intervention. Stephanie speaks about a variety of topics, including typical and atypical feeding development, responsive feeding, and trauma-informed feeding assessment and treatment. She enjoys mentoring, collaborating, and teaching. Stephanie also shares information and insight for families and professionals on Instagram (@Learntotalkwithme) and Tiktok (@Learntotalkwithme). She is the author of two board books, My First Learn-to-Talk Book and My First Learn-to-Talk Book: Things That Go (Sourcebooks). Stephanie lives in Northbrook with her husband, three children, and two dogs.

Ready to sign up?


Cancellations must be in writing. We are unable to issue a refund if more than 10% of the course has been viewed. If the Get Permission Institute should need to remove course content for any reason, course fees will be refunded or transferred to another course at the discretion of the participant.