We cannot say that spoken English training is your need. Most stutterers would probably say that they already “know” English. Remember, however, that most international students can read and write English much better than they can speak it because the cognitive component of language has been emphasized in grammar-based instruction at the expense of hearing and proprioceptive feedback training. Therefore, most have more difficulty speaking English. Yet, think back to your own experience. Did you develop all three components of speech simultaneously, or did your stuttering force you to emphasize your cognitive abilities at the expense of simultaneously using feedback from your ears and mouth to develop normal speech?

Even now, you may make surprising improvement if your early childhood caused you to miss the essential language growth these lessons would replace.

International students who cannot pronounce “th” must go beyond haltingly saying, “Tis, tat, and tuh oter ting,” by using language drills.

In the same way, you must advance past “Wh-wh-we . . . wh-wh-will . . . look at it.” Both of you need the same kind of language drills.

Just like an international student, if you did not develop all three components of speech as a child, more than likely you need to go back now and simultaneously retrain your mind, hearing, and neurological control of your mouth in order to speak fluently. Nothing will do that for you except long-term use of spoken English drills in which you speak correct English, comparing each of your sentences with those of a narrator who is correctly pronouncing each word. This is the way all of us learn to speak any language, though for most, it is usually done during childhood.

But now, say that the stutterer in the illustration above has made enough progress that he or she no longer needs to treat “we will” as two separate words. Rather, through relearning spoken English, this stutterer has now mastered the word combination “we/will” in verb drills. Each time “we/will” was encountered in the language drills, normal cadence and pronunciation were used irrespective of the verb it was associated with. For this individual, “we will” can finally be said smoothly without blocking or repetitions. The cognitive “we will” of this stutterer has now been reinforced by correct feedback from both hearing and the nerve receptors in his or her mouth. What would happen to the stutterer who was always troubled with the “w” sound if just the “we will” future conjugation of the English verb became part of a repertoire of words that could be spoken without hesitation? Then as more word groups and sentence patterns were learned with correct pronunciation and rhythm, English fluency could become an attainable goal.

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