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Can I tell you about Selective Mutism?

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements. Introduction. 1. Introducing Hannah who has Selective Mutism. 2. Tension, panic and phobia. 3. Speaking freely at home. 4. It's not refusal to speak. 5. Playing with other children. 6. Talking in the classroom. 7. Feeling stressed and frustrated. 8. Speaking with the wider family. 9. Associated fears or phobias. 11. Telling the class about Selective Mutism. 12. How other children can help. 13. How teachers can help. 14. How parents can help. Recommended reading, DVDs, websites and organisations.

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The ideal introduction to Selective Mutism for people all ages.

About the Author

Maggie Johnson is a speech and language therapist and educational consultant specialising in childhood communication disorders and selective mutism. With thirty years' experience in education and community settings, Maggie works closely with families and schools in East Kent and provides training and workshops for schools, parents and health professionals across the UK and abroad. She lives in Ramsgate, UK. Alison Wintgens was a consultant speech and language therapist in child and adolescent mental health based at St George's Hospital until her retirement in July 2011. She has worked for over 20 years with children who have selective mutism and lives in London. Now she continues to write and teach, and is the advisor on selective mutism to the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists. Maggie and Alison have both published extensively in the field of speech and language therapy and are advisors to the Selective Mutism Information and Research Association. Robyn Gallow's illustrations have been used in a number of educational titles. She lives in London, and is involved in both fashion and illustrating.


Maggie Johnson and Alison Wintgens, are very experienced in the field of Selective Mutism (SM) and this shines through in their short but comprehensive book... I found the "voice" of the book very powerful, giving a real insight into how a child or young person with SM may feel and what approaches are helpful and unhelpful for them. I would recommend this book both to professionals working with children and young people with SM, to share with them, their classmates, teachers and other adults in school, and also to the parents of children with SM. -- Claire Thomas, EP * Debate - British Psychological Society * This fictional presentation of the problems of Selective Mutism, from the point of view of an affected child, may prove helpful for selectively mute children and despondent and worried parents and teachers... After reading this book, those who would like to help selectively mute or even very shy children will be in a position to choose from the range of tried and tested strategies suggested by Hannah. These have been derived from the wide experience of the authors and the national support network SMIRA, and have been shown to produce good results. -- Alice Sluckin OBE, Chair of SMIRA, Retired Senior Psychiatric Social Worker The insights and practical suggestions in this engaging book will be of great help to those around a child who is selectively mute and to many of the children themselves. -- Tony Cline, Co-Director of the CPD Doctorate in Educational Psychology, University College London and Professor of Educational Psychology, University of Bedfordshire Can I Tell You About Selective Mutism? is loaded with practical school and home intervention strategies for helping the child with Selective Mutism. It's also a great overview of the internal world of a child with Selective Mutism, and provides a wonderful resource for "normalizing" their experience. I can't wait to read it with my patients! -- Aimee Kotrba, PhD, clinical psychologist and board member of the Selective Mutism Group, USA This sensitive and inspired book will be an invaluable aid for children and adults alike. -- Biddy Baxter, Honorary President of SMIRA (Selective Mutism Information and Research Association) These convey a great deal about Hannah and her SM with a gentle empathetic humour. I wish I'd had this book when I first started out in teaching and I definitely would want to put a copy into the hands of every member of the support staff in any school. -- Red Reading Hub The book is designed to help children conquer their anxiety. It should also help other pupils understand the problems faced by those with selective mutism - and how pressure can make them feel even less confident about speaking. A great, pupil-friendly resource. -- TES Maggie Johnson and Alison Wintgens offer very practical advice and application around how to support children with these difficulties. -- eye This is a book that belongs in all schools and should be read by teachers as well as friends of children suffering from this debilitating condition. -- Healthy Books As the parent of a 5-year-old boy with selective mutism (SM), I was really excited to read this book. Any explanation of this complicated condition and its emotional impact on the child and those caring for him or her is to be valued... Any book like this that a teacher can read in less than an hour is to be welcomed, to ensure that understanding and support can be given. -- Juno Magazine I wish I'd had this book when I first started out in teaching and I definitely would want to put a copy into the hands of every member of the support staff in any school. -- The Word Pool

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