One of the most important points to keep in mind when your child or a student in your class is receiving speech and language services is the importance of carrying over intervention in both the home and school settings. It is ideal for parents, therapists, and educators to work together and discuss the techniques that will be effective for each child. There are many strategies that can be incorporated into a child’s daily routine to boost their speech and language skills. In this post, we will focus on stuttering.
- Allow the student to complete his/her thoughts without interrupting or completing the sentence for them.
- It is important not to ask the child to stop or start over their sentence. Asking the student to ‘take a breath’ or ‘relax’ can feel demeaning and is not helpful.
- Maintain natural eye contact with the student. Try not to feel embarrassed or anxious as the student will pick up on your feelings and could become more anxious. Wait naturally until the child is finished.
- Use a slow and relaxed rate with your own speech, but not so slow that you sound unnatural. Using pauses in your speech is an effective way to slow down your speech rate as well as the student’s.
- Give the student your full attention when they are speaking so that they know you are listening to what they have to say. You can be most supportive when the child does not feel that they need to fight for your attention. With younger children it is also helpful to get down to their level, placing a hand on their chest as well as using eye contact assures them that they have your attention.
- After a student completes a conversational turn, it would be helpful for you to rephrase what they said in a fluent manner. This can be helpful as the student realizes you understand what they said, but also provides a fluent model for them.
- Try to call on the student in class when you feel that they will be successful with the answer (when the student raises his/her hand) versus putting the student on the spot when they have not volunteered information. In addition, new material or complex information may cause the student to feel more stress and thus, increase dysfluencies.