|About the presenter: Craig E. Coleman is a Clinical Coordinator at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh and Co-Director of the Stuttering Center of Western Pennsylvania. He received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees at the University of Pittsburgh. Craig is a member of the National Insurance Advocacy Initiative and Chair of the National Stuttering Association's Insurance Advocacy Committee. In addition, Craig is an elected member of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA) Legislative Council. Craig provides clinical service to preschool, school-age, and adolescent children who stutter and is involved in clinical research activities.|
When evaluating or treating childhood stuttering, it can be difficult for clinicians to know where to start. In addition to providing effective intervention for the child, clinicians must also help educate parents, teachers, and others in the child's life about stuttering. Even though this can be an intimidating proposition, there are many resources and materials available that can help from both a treatment and education standpoint.
The resources provided below include a brief description and most are in PDF file format. Those resources marked with require a free Adobe reader which can be downloaded here. These are all materials that I have found useful when working with children who stutter. Please feel free to print these materials and use them yourself. Whether you are a clinician, student, parent, person who stutters, family member, teacher, or physician, I hope you will not only use these materials, but continue to improve them through your feedback, as well. All of the resources below are from the Stuttering Center of Western PA (www.stutteringcenter.org). Readers are encouraged to examine the many other wonderful resources from other facilities in order to have a wide variety of "tools" available for those who stutter.
Remember, stuttering is a unique communication disorder that presents not only many challenges, but also many opportunities. Through effective treatment, we can help children who stutter unlock their communication potential. No matter what your relationship to the child, there is no better feeling than to be a long for the ride.
Helping Children Develop Healthy Communication Attitudes - Children may exhibit strong negative reactions to stuttering. This handout provides suggestions for parents to help children develop positive attitudes toward communication. The ultimate goal is to prevent the child from developing the negative reactions that characterize advanced stuttering, while simultaneously improving fluency in speech treatment.
Suggestions for Families of Young Children Who Stutter - This handout provides ten suggestions for parents and other family members of young children who stutter. Some of the suggestions may help children speak more easily by reducing the stressors a child feels when communicating. Some of the suggestions are directly related to speaking or listening behaviors, and some are related to more general family routines.
Disfluency Count Sheet - This form allows clinicians to track number of disfluencies in various speaking situations. Clinicians can use this form to track both the number and types of disfluencies.
Diagnostic Intake Form for Preschool and School-Age Children - This is the intake form that we use for obtaining information prior to the assessment for preschool and school-age children who stutter.
Diagnostic Intake Form For Teens Who Stutter - This is the intake form that we use for obtaining information prior to the assessment for adolescent children who stutter.
As an initial phase of treatment for preschool children who stutter, we administer the PCTP (Yaruss, Coleman, & Hammer, in review). This combines aspects of both indirect and direct treatment and can serve as the sole form of treatment, or a beginning stage of treatment, with a more direct approach to follow. In this program, parents are taught techniques for facilitating fluent speech in the home environment. Following the approximately six sessions of the PCTP, the child may be discharged and monitored, or more direct individual treatment may be recommended. The handouts below are used with the PCTP in the initial parent education and counseling.
"Bucket" Analogy Handout- The Bucket analogy is used to show parents that stuttering is not "caused" by one thing. Rather, it is a multi-factorial disorder that can have many contributing factors.
Communication Wellness Handout - This handout is used to explain our treatment flow, starting with parent education and counseling sessions and progressing through indirect and direct components of treatment.
Home Charting Exercise - We typically have parents complete this handout in the early stages of treatment to help demonstrate that one situation is not "causing" their child to stutter. Parents can also start to feel empowered by this activity, as they start to become more active participants in treatment.
Easy Talking Practice - This handout provides suggestions for parents to help reduce their overall communication rate with their child. This approach does not focus solely on speech rate, but rather communication rate (i.e. speaking rate, pause time, turn-taking, etc.).
Modifying Questions Handout - This handout provides examples of prompts that parents can use to invite the child to speak, rather than demand speaking from the child.
Communication Modification Refresher - This handout is given at the end of the PCTP and reviews all strategies that have been targeted in the initial phase of the treatment program.
Interruptions Chart - This handout provides a strategy that parents can use to help reduce verbal interruptions in the home environment. This strategy can be particularly useful with children who stutter and their siblings.
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