Younger children may have no anxieties about their stammer and simply need support from the teacher when speaking. However, the older primary school child is likely to becoming aware and anxious about the effects of his stammer.
It is particularly important then for the pupil to be able to talk with his teacher about any difficulties he may have. Such an open discussion shows the child that his stammer is accepted and understood and helps to maintain self-esteem and confidence.
Some children who stammer do have feelings of anxiety and even shame about their stammering and this is compounded if they are not able to talk about their feelings with key adults and friends. Keeping the door open to continuing negotiation and discussion with the teacher is very helpful and also ensures that any problems may be promptly responded to.
If the child's feelings are not expressed then negative buried emotions may adversely affect behaviour. The BSA view has always been that children who stammer should have easy access to a teacher in whom they have confidence. This need by all children for such a member of staff is supported in the HMI Report 'Personal Support for Pupils in Scottish Schools' (2004).
In the video clip the teacher listens carefully to Paul and picks up on key words. She then asks a closed question with a single word answer so that Paul is able to contribute information to the conversation. As stammering is variable and unpredictable, it can be very frightening for a child and support is needed at all times but particularly during a period of severe dysfluency. She reassures him about the support he will receive if he is ever worried about happenings in school.