A child starts to develop his speech around the age of 2. Up to age 4, the child is still under the speech development stage where the child goes from single word speech to talking in complete sentences and paragraphs. It is between those ages that the critical part of speech development takes place and possibly around the same time when some children start to stutter. Children stutter for different reasons. One of them is probably because of fear to express themselves to adults. Another reason could be due to a mental or learning disability and another reason could be through genetics.
You will know when children stutter by gauging them through their speaking patterns. Stuttering is a condition wherein the person is not able to fully express himself without repeating certain syllables or prolonged pauses in between words and phrases. This could make a serious damage in a person's self-esteem, as people who stutter often become the topic of certain jokes and cruel reactions.
Helping a child overcome this difficult condition will certainly help improve not only his speech but also his confidence. The way to do this is by opening yourself up to the different possibilities in helping the child to cope with this condition and eventually get cured from stuttering.
One of the first ways to deal with the condition is to avoid drawing any attention to their stuttering or stammering. Let them find their voice and wait for them until they are able to fully say what they want to say. This is encouraging the kid by letting him know that you are willing to listen and wait for what he has to say but and that his speech is no hindrance to your listening ear. This will definitely boost his confidence to speak even more and this is the beginning of his improvement.
Another way for you to deal with children who stutter will be by letting them sing songs or recite poetry. Nursery rhymes are easy to say and remember. Singing children's song will also alleviate tension, as they will certainly have fun while learning how to speak well. It is easier for them to relax their minds, their mouths and their facial muscles while doing these things. It will also relieve them of any anxiety that has to do with speaking to other people.
The most important thing that these children need from you is your emotional support. Let them know that you will do whatever it takes to help them and that you are truly there for them. If you are a parent or a teacher, a friend or a volunteer, your love and support will definitely lift up their young spirits and make them not lose any hope in their current situation.
It is also important for you to know why these children stutter. Knowing the cause for their stuttering will definitely help you make the right approach so that the kids will trust you and cooperate with the activities you have lined up for them.