Role-playing and stuttering therapy

As toddlers, we love to engage in role play, and pretend play since we mimic what we see in our daily lives, and want to try it out, for ourselves. Role-playing happens to be an amazing speech therapy activity that can be implemented with people who stutter. Not only does it build confidence that is needed for the outside world, but it also allows the clients to practice their favorite fluency techniques taught in speech therapy. I’ve had many teens and adults enjoy role-playing and getting their “feet wet” stopping their avoidances in their tracks and using what they learn in therapy as a bridge to being open to trying this out in their daily lives. Most common ones would include making phone calls and placing a reservation, ordering at a restaurant with pretend menus, and even walking up to a store clerk to ask specific questions. At first, it is really scary even though it is all pretend, but like anything else with practice it gets easier and easier. I’ve had a lot of success having my clients transfer the skills that they have acquired through role-playing and using that same confidence to approach real life store clerks, waiters, and even making phone calls that they were always dreading and avoiding. Building confidence gives way to fluency – it’s a win-win. 

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