Stammer

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Introduction

  1. Stammering is when:
    1. you repeat sounds or syllables – for example, such as saying "mu-mu-mu-mummy"
    2. you make sounds longer – for example, "mmmmmmummy"
    3. a word gets stuck or doesn't come out at all
  2. Stammering varies in severity from person to person, and from situation to situation. Someone might have periods of stammering followed by times when they speak relatively fluently.

Source: NHS Stammering page

Reasonable Adjustments

  1. Show a normal reaction to their speaking, maintain eye-contact and focus on what is said rather than how it is said.
  2. Wait for them to finish rather than telling them to sop, slow down or start again. This can be frustrating for a person who stammers.
  3. Let them finish their sentences without finishing for them.
  4. Slow your own rate of speech so that the child doesn't try to match the rate of their speech to yours
  5. If the student is struggling and you are fairly sure of what they are likely to say, you could say things like, "Did you see it here or in the corridor?" Stammerers can benefit from an alternative being modelled.
  6. Don't pressure them to talk or answer questions.
  7. Be aware of situations that may make talking more difficult and cause them to feel under pressure.
  8. Some situations make talking easier (E.g. reading in unison, talking to a friend)
  9. Praise and reinforce behaviours other than speaking so they can develop confidence in other areas - stammering children can have very low self-esteem.

Further Information

  1. NHS Stammering info
  2. STAMMA Parent advice page