2020 Conference: Amanda Caunter

Amanda Caunter: Croydon, NSW, Australia

A day in the life of an Early Childhood Teacher who stutters

In this presentation I will provide a synopsis of the challenges and obstacles that I faced on the road to becoming an Early Childhood Teacher. This however was not my first career choice. I had to make a heartfelt career decision to accept that being a primary school teacher may not have been the right career path for me at the time. I came to terms with this during treatment for my stuttering. It was not an easy time for me, as I had my heart set on being a primary school teacher. But I realise now that even though this was a difficult time, the change in direction may have been for the best at that time in my life. I have become more confident within myself and this has led me to accomplish things that I thought were not possible. During the presentation I will take delegates on a journey that is my life and will reveal the motto that has helped me to achieve all that I have to this day.

Amanda Caunter has been a member of Australian Speak Easy Association since near completion of her stuttering treatment with the Australia Stuttering Research Centre. The onset of stuttering occurred at age three. Received treatment for my stutter at the Communication Disorders Treatment Clinic, the University of Sydney with the Lidcombe Program and the Stuttering Unit at Bankstown. My stuttering severity was reduced significantly however it did not resolve completely. However, my stuttering severity was exacerbated whilst on professional experience in a primary school setting. I was working towards achieving a degree as a primary school teacher. Received private treatment at the Australian Stuttering Research Centre. During treatment, I made a conscious decision to add early childhood units onto my degree in order to provide further opportunities for job prospects upon completion of university studies. My skills and interests were more suited in the Early Childhood setting so I pursued a career inspiring young inquisitive minds. I worked casually in children’s services in 2014 and commenced full time work as an Early Childhood Teacher in 2015.