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Miami Del Ferro Course – day 5

15-11-2019

Day 5, the last day of the Del Ferro course in Miami. What a week it has been and what a fantastic group we had the pleasure of teaching. As expected, after the night of challenges, the group came in with a lot of self-confidence. This mindset was necessary for the new challenges to come on the last day. Making phone calls and reading out loud are for most people who stutter situations they do not like and even avoid, mostly due to bad experiences. Changing this into good experiences will change their opinion on these activities as you have to commit to do these from time to time in daily life.

We started with making phone calls and everyone called the husband of one our students. We could not have wished for a better person on the other side of the line to practice with. He played along, rightfully complimented everybody and was truly enjoying talking to people he had never spoke to before.

You could hear the surprise in his voice when two students told him that 5 days ago they could not imagine making phone calls speaking fluently. Now sentence after sentence came out from each and every single person. Tears of joy followed and even the mother of one of our younger students let it all go as she her son live up and talk like he had dreamed of talking.

The same student faced his biggest challenge shortly after: reading out loud. His English teacher had decided that he did not have to read out loud in class because of his stutter. That had a massive impact on his self-esteem, feeling like he was less than others. Dennis recognized this from his high school period and shared the same pain.

The exercise could not go better and two victory arms were held up high in the air. He faced his challenge, spoke brilliantly and is working hard on getting all his self-confidence back step by step.

The last day truly is a fantastic day as the level what the students have achieved in only 5 days is unbelievable. But this last day there was an extra challenge. The students were asked to do  a presentation in front of a professional camera. Could you imagine, having a stutter problem and standing in front of a camera while having everybody’s attention…

They rocked, there are no others words to describe their performances. Not only the fact that they were fighting to go first and show what they can but also their concentration and stories they had to tell. They were calm, concentrated, focused on their mission and above all: fluent!

The course was coming to an end and both Ingrid and Dennis explained with many examples what was expected from the students after the course. Speaking a lot and seeking challenges will boost the confidence and diminish insecurities until all fear of speaking have disappeared.

The group was challenging which made the feeling and connection between the students themselves and towards the teachers one to never forget. It felt like a family, all sharing the same dream and all eager to give their dedication and effort to overcome their stuttering. Our first American 5-day Del Ferro course was nothing less than a big success, with many more to follow!