Teaching Tip: Students Who Stutter

Stuttering is a fairly common problem. Approximately 3 million people in the United States stutter, with a ratio of 5 males to 1 female. Here are some things you can do to enhance the fluency of students who stutter.
  • Ignore times when the student stutters while reinforcing times when the student speaks fluently.
  • Try to avoid having the student speak while he/she is doing something else at the same time.
  • When speaking with the student, speak slowly with pauses.
  • Make it clear to the student that you are interested in what he/she is saying, not how it is said.
  • Provide opportunities for the student to contribute to the class in ways other than in-class discussions.
Here are some things you should NOT do.
  • Don't complete words for the student or do the student's talking.
  • Don't tell the student to simply "slow down" or "relax".
  • Don't lower your expectations for the student.
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