Australia - Melbourne March 2014 - Course Report

A 4-day intensive course was recently held in Melbourne, Australia to help people who stutter to become eloquent and effective communicators. The following is a brief report on that course.

Very happy people after giving a great public speech at Federation Square.

McGuire Programme (Aust) - Melbourne Course - March 2014

Wednesday 5th March saw 15 out of control stutterers arrive at the Victoria Hotel, Melbourne – some had been circling this date in the diary for months, others had literally found out about the course a few days earlier; nevertheless, they all came to find out about The McGuire Programme and how we can help them to overcome a major speaking challenge in their life, their stutter.

After Geoff Johnston (Regional Director) and Scott Monson (Course Instructor) gave an overview of the McGuire Programme and how the techniques had helped them control their stutter, the new students were asked a series of short questions to allow their speech pattern to be identified.

On Thursday morning, the ground rules of the Programme were laid out and the New Students were given an introduction to the McGuire Programme theory and objectives. The group were then led through the art of costal breathing, before learning about where sounds come from and beginning to make sounds with full control. Many of the New Students found that they had suddenly spent an entire morning without struggling to say a word!

New Students were assigned a mentor before the first lunch break; this was someone for them to ask questions about the Programme, techniques or material being taught. Just before everyone left to eat, all of the New Students stood up and said their names using their new technique, without so much of a stutter!

On the Thursday afternoon, the fundamentals of the McGuire Programme were taught and drilled, allowing the New Students to practice their new speaking technique in a controlled environment. The Thursday concluded with all of the present NS getting up in front of the room and giving their names and addresses.

Friday began with the reintroduction of the costal breathing technique, to allow everyone to pick up from where they had ended on Thursday night. While more of the McGuire Programme techniques were explained and demonstrated in the main room, all of the New Students were given a one-to-one session with a Course Instructor and their grasp of the technique evaluated.

Lunchtime was the ‘decision time’ for the New Students and the opportunity for them to join the McGuire Programme or say farewell (for now), 2 younger students decided that it wasn’t the right time for them to join and we wish them well.

Friday afternoon saw the returning Graduates all go out into the streets to do their own ‘100 contacts’ challenge, while the 13 remaining New Students observed before standing up in front of the room and reporting back.

Saturday morning saw a ‘lighter’ side to the McGuire Programme as the New Students engaged in a series of public speaking exercises, designed to show them just how much fun they can have when being a controlled and eloquent speaker! This boost in energy levels saw all of the New Students bound out of the hotel and into the streets to do their own 100-contact challenge along with a short Public Speaking exercise! They all ‘passed’ with flying colours and then had a session on using the telephone and applying the McGuire technique; for some, this was the first phone call they’d ever made without stuttering out of control!
Then the final day of the course had a little more learning and drilling, mixed in with a little bit of discipline and a splash of letting go with your speech! Coaches were allocated so that the New Graduates had access to the critical ongoing coaching and support so critical for long-term success. They were given advice on how to best utilise the McGuire Support Network in the ‘real world’ before standing up and giving a ‘going home speech’ – these were heartfelt, honest and often emotional, a true testament to the journey these 13 New Graduates had made over 4 days from out of control stutterers to confident, controlled speakers!