What is LENA?

The LENA device is a small, wearable recorder that collects valuable information about a child’s language and listening environment.

Child with hearing loss wearing a LENA vest

How does it work?

If your family chooses to use a LENA device, your child will wear the device secured in a comfortable vest for up to four full days. A report will be generated that details the number of adult words spoken to or around your child, the number of child vocalizations, the number of adult-child conversational turns, and audio environment details, such as background noise and distance from the speaker. Since the LENA device is measuring child vocalizations and not actual words, this technology can be used with children as young as 2 months old. Using words is not required to receive meaningful feedback about your child’s language development!

Why should we collect this information?

A growing body of research is demonstrating how conversational turns between an adult and a child are critical in order for children to develop age-appropriate language skills. Talking to your child is fantastic, but having a conversation with your child is even better. A LENA report will make it clear how much you are talking with your child. Additionally, for a child with hearing loss who is learning through listening, it is important for caregivers to be close to the child and for background noise to be kept to a minimum. A LENA report will give you the information you need about challenging listening environments throughout your child’s day. Your Birth to Three Specialist can then work with you to figure out ways to address these challenges.

Child with hearing loss wearing a LENA vest outdoors.

View A Sample Report

Sample Lena Report

What Families Are Saying About LENA

“The LENA report was encouraging and helped to give a measure of validity to the techniques that we are using at home.”

“It was helpful to note that quality conversational turns can take place during normal, daily routines like during meal prep.”

“It was important to see ALL the areas everyday sound is impacting her or reaching her ears. LENA painted a full picture.”

“It is easy to question whether you, as a parent, are doing a good enough job to help your child, and the LENA report was encouraging and felt like an objective overview that helped us realize that our daughter was hearing and interacting with language throughout her whole day.”