Feeling put on the spot on a video screen when you can’t get words out can be intimidating. Experts offer advice.
For teachers and classmates of children who stutter, Travis Robertson, director of Camp SAY, a summer camp for young people who stutter, has this advice: After asking a question, wait at least seven seconds for an answer, and don’t be afraid of the silence or space in the conversation. It can take time for students to formulate a thought, gather themselves and respond, said Mr. Robertson, who is also vice president of programming for SAY, the Stuttering Association for the Young. Let them know you’re engaged and interested in what they’re saying.
“People often say, ‘Calm down, and breathe, and think about what you want to say,’” Kaitlyn said. “That doesn’t help. I can’t control my stutter. I can’t just breathe and make it go away. Have some patience with me, and just let me say it.”