Eaglesham teacher helps raise awareness of stammering

Adam Black who has been awarded an BEM.
Adam Black who has been awarded an BEM.

As International Stammering Awareness Day approaches, an Eaglesham teacher is aiming to raise the profile of the speech disorder.

Adam Black, who teaches at Eastmuir Primary School, hopes that International Stammering Awareness Day which takes place on Monday, October 22, will bring the condition to the forefront of people’s minds.

Adam said: “I hope that it brings the disability to the front of people’s heads.

“Perhaps if they are thinking about it, then they will be more sympathetic to those who stutter.

“Talking about it is how we can help improve people’s lives and help make people more openminded.

“When I wasa growing up the only two people who I knew had a stammer was Porky Pig and Arkwright from Open All Hours!”

Adam will be taking part in the Awareness Day by holding an assembly at the school he teaches at.

“I will be holding a full assembly on the day at the primary school. I’ll discuss the condition and also show a short film and read a story.”

And Adam is the perfect person to give a first-hand account of what it is like to live with a stammer.

He struggled to speak as a child and teenager due to his stammer.

“I didn’t really notice that I had any difficulty until I was around eight-years-old,” Adam explained.

“Growing up with a stutter was really tough and I struggled through school.

“Even though I knew the answers in class, I never spoke out. I couldn’t say what I wanted to.”

In 2007 Adam used the same life-changing McGuire Programme as Gareth Gates and Educating Yorkshire’s Musharaf Asgha.

“There isn’t a cure for stammering, but programmes like the McGuire help you overcome it and deal with it a bit better,” he continued.

“It taught me how to control my stutter and be happy with it. I learned breathing techniques to help manage it as best I could and help build my confidence.

“The most important thing is the psychology – you need to keep telling yourself you’re in control of it. I think there is a lot of pressure from TV for people to be perfect.

“I’m proof that you don’t have to be perfect; young people need to accept their flaws as part of them and that it’s okay not to be perfect.

“Everyone has their own quirks – you just need to embrace them the best you can.”

For further information on International Stammering Awareness Day, visit www.stammering.org.