This video is a story about a young boy winning the battle against stutter monsters. This book was written by Elijah Silberman and his Speech Therapist, Nancy Barcal M.A. CCC-SLP.
Video Dialogue Below:
Nancy: So, Elijah, how old are you now?
Elijah: I’m 10.
Nancy: And when’s your birthday?
Elijah: September 17 2006
Nancy: You’ll be 11 this September?
Nancy: You made this book when you were about 8 years old.
Nancy: And what does the book tell, the story about what? The story about how you fought?
Elijah: How I fought stutter monsters.
Nancy: That’s right. And we made this book up when we were together. Okay so, let’s talk about it. It says my book, can you read that?
Elijah: My book about winning the battle by Elijah Silberman. I made this book when I was 8 years old and now I’m 10.
Nancy: Cool, and what are you looking at right now on the picture screen?
Elijah: The pictures that I made when I was 8 years old.
Nancy: Tell the people on the video what they look like.
Elijah: They look like little stick people.
Nancy: Good, and what are they trying to do?
Elijah: They are trying to get into my castle.
Nancy: and what is your castle? Your castle is protecting…?
Elijah: Protecting me from stuttering.
Nancy: Yes, and where are the stutter monsters.
Elijah: On the other side.
Nancy: Good. On the outside, right? And what are they trying to do?
Elijah: They are trying to break in.
Nancy: That’s right they are trying to break in.
Nancy: Tell me the story here. We’re going to read it. Once…
Elijah: Once upon a time, the army of stutter monsters tried to attack my castle where I keep smooth speech.
Nancy: Good, and then?
Elijah: I guarded the castle, but some of the stutter monsters snuck in.
Nancy: Good. And can you describe this picture right here? You told me about it a minute ago. The stutter monsters are digging what?
Elijah: They are digging a tunnel.
Nancy: And it’s underneath the-
Elijah: Underneath my castle and they are trying to get through, but I’m shooting them with my bow and arrow.
Nancy: And how did you earn your bow and arrow?
Elijah: By practicing.
Nancy: Here’s another guy! Okay. Read the rest of it. They would… We’re talking about the stutter monsters, right? So, they would attack…
Elijah: They would attack my throat. They tried to close my throat.
Nancy: And you have a nice picture here.
Elijah: That’s me.
Nancy: That’s wonderful.
Nancy: It’s a picture of you! And, what did you put here?
Elijah: A vest.
Nancy: Yes, and what’s it doing to your throat?
Elijah: Choking me.
Nancy: Yeah, it’s like choking you. It’s like a vest on your throat going stifled noise
Elijah: Yeah stifled noise
Nancy: Now, did you tell your throat to close? No.
Nancy: What happened? Part of your brain has a tiny little… Like a little bump. A little glitch. And it made the wrong signal. And it set it down, and it told your throat to-
Nancy: To stop, right? And to close. And you said, “Hey! Wait a second. I didn’t tell my throat to close. Would you please stop telling my throat to close?” And the only way to teach your head to stop sending those close signals is to stop sending those close signals is by doing what?
Nancy: Good. Excellent. Good. Gasps Look at this. What is this person. You have a picture of a guy stuttering, right? So, if this is you, what does it say?
Elijah: I-I-I want- I want to go home.
Nancy: First you had a lot of I’s here, “I-I-I-I”, and then you stopped. There’s a line there. And then you said “I want to go home” and you stretched.
Nancy: See you started to stutter, but then you said “Nuh uh, I’m going to stop that pushing-
Nancy: and I’m going to stretch”. Perfect. Look at this, can you read it?
Elijah: They tried to repeat the sounds even though I told them to stop.
Elijah: Then I discovered weapons to fight the stutter monsters.
Elijah: I started to stutter, but then I fought back by stopping the push.
Nancy: Yes, and look at this picture. What do you have here?
Elijah: A bow and arrow.
Elijah: A vest.
Elijah: Uniform and a sword.
Nancy: Look what else you added!
Elijah: A cannon.
Nancy: You have a great big weapon now! Okay, so you have a cannon here and you earned that by practicing, right?
Nancy: And what are all these?
Elijah: They’re cannon balls.
Nancy: And how did you earn those?
Nancy: Yes, and what are you shooting at?
Elijah: A stutter monster.
Nancy: Look at this, look at this! The next-
Elijah: -weapon I developed was to stop and stretch. Then I added bouncing my voice up and down like a yo-yo.
Nancy: Good, excellent. And what did you draw at the top here? You drew a…
Elijah: I drew a yo-yo, and stop, and stretch.
Nancy: Perfect. So, you have a stop sign and then a hill to stretch on.
Nancy: So now look at your castle. Look at how big that is.
Elijah: Yeah, it’s huge.
Nancy: It’s huge and look at how thick that wall is because you did tons of practicing.
Nancy: So now, listen to this one. Read the rest of it dear.
Elijah: My smooth speech is inside the castle.
Elijah: Inside the castle walls in my brain. I build big walls so the monsters can’t get in and attack.
Nancy: Good, now look at this! Okay, I build-
Elijah: I build walls thicker and higher when I practiced using my weapons. I built my weapons by 1.) Stopping the push 2.) Stretching 3.) Pausing.