2012-07-05 / Lifestyles

In their words: Stuttering DVD available at library

MANISTIQUE – Kids who stutter have a lot to say, and friends can show them how in “Stuttering: For Kids by Kids”, a DVD starring real kids who stutter. The program is now available at Manistique School and Public Library.

Many children who stutter have never met anyone else who struggles with the same disability. In this DVD from the Stuttering Foundation, they meet other kids who recount how they handle challenges such as teasing, speaking out in class, and teaching others about stuttering.

Swish, a lively and engaging animated basketball character designed by students at Purdue University, narrates the DVD. The children, who range in age from first-graders to high school students, offer frank and sometimes differing views of stuttering.

For example, Matthew, 10, said his speech difficulties are, “No big deal.” Nine-year-old Kate, on the other hand, worries about talking, what is going to happen next, and whether or not she’ll stutter.

Arianne, 14, said, “The hardest part about stuttering is to get through it and to stay in there when you’re stuck.” Umang, 12, agrees, “Sometimes it gets kind of annoying when you want to say something and you can’t. I also get worried what other people might think if I do stutter and wonder if I’ll be able to get out of my blocks and things.”

According to speech-language pathologist Bill Murphy, of Purdue University, “All those interested in helping kids learn more about stuttering will want to see this tape.”

“The children featured are a perfect example of how to openly and honestly handle stuttering,” he continued.

“This is an important tool for families and teachers of kids who stutter too,” added Jane Fraser, president of the nonprofit Stuttering Foundation.

Books and DVDs produced by the 65-year-old nonprofit are available free to any public library. A library that will shelve them can contact the Foundation at (800) 992-9392, email info@stutteringhelp.org or visit www.stutteringhelp.org or www.tartamudez.org.

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