Tips for Parents with School-Aged Children who Stutter

Just the other day, I was on the phone with a colleague with whom I share a client. We were brainstorming together about a stuttering packet with simple tips that we could send home to parents and teachers. I thought to myself, oh this will be perfect for the blog, won’t it? So, here we are.

The purpose of this post is to create a place to find helpful ideas, strategies and links for children who stutter. These tips are most beneficial for children around the age of 6, give or take a little because this is the time when they begin to grasp the difference between fluent and non-fluent speech.

Tip 1: Discuss with your child the definition of stuttering

Tip 2: Have your child research celebrities or historical people who stutter in order for them to understand that there are many different people just like them

Tip 3: Discuss with your child the different types of stuttering. You may you do this easily with a quick google search:

Tip 4: Demonstrate with your child the difference between tension and relaxation in your whole body (i.e., fingers, arms, legs, toes, eyes, belly, lips, throat)
     - This will help your child learn how to move their muscles easier and in a more relaxed, unhurried way.

Tip 5: Talk about belly breathing with your child. Here are a few videos for reference: //
     - Learn about breathing from the diaphragm (belly) rather than the upper chest. This allows more space for air to travel in the body.
     - This is a healthy way to assist your child’s body in relaxation.

Tip 6: Demonstrate pausing and taking a breath before and during speaking and reading tasks. When speaking to your child, use the language, “take a pause” rather than “slow down”
     - During reading tasks, assist your child in pausing at punctuation and natural phrases/ breaks in sentences.

     - After each pause, teach them to take a breath in and start talking on the exhale

Tip 7: Ask modified questions to promote relaxed back-and-forth exchange with your child. This may reduce pressure.
     - Say, “Tell me about your picture.” Or “I wonder what you see on this page.”

Tip 8: Rephrase what your child says with easy, relaxed speech
     - This will enable your child to listen to fluent speech after a stuttering episode has occurred.

Here are highly recommended, wonderful materials that you will find helpful to use with your child. Something To Say About Stuttering is a book that discusses a child’s feeling/ emotions about stuttering. Fluency Flips is a tool you can use to work on slow rate of speech, pausing and smooth speech!

Thank you for reading. Please share this post with a family who might benefit from it.


Sources: The Stuttering Foundation: 7 Tips for talking with your child

Author: Paige Woolman, M.S., CCC-SLP

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Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as professional advice. The content is based on the author's personal experiences, research, and opinions. It is always recommended to consult with a qualified professional or expert before making any decisions or taking action based on the information provided in this blog.

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