Cued Speech News Spring 2014

Cued Speech News
Spring 2014
Issue 59

One family's story - inspiring and informative as Lel discusses:  evidence versus belief systems in deaf education, learning CS in six hours and how using CS helped her BSL.  Click here to see the series of short films.


Summer cueing weekend returns Friday 1st August (4.00 p.m) - Sunday 3rd
August (4.00 p.m)

We are now ready to take bookings for this fun and informative event.

We have a rich programme of activities. This year we have added some more formal tuition in Cued Speech, aimed at both parents and professionals, and we are also setting up a full crèche using a professional company.

While the parents are ‘in class’ the kids will love the beach adventure activities and other outdoor activities.

Click here for more information and follow the link for the booking form.

The Cued Speech Interview  Emma Sadeghi

Emma is one of our Cued Speech tutors.  She is also a linguist, speaking five languages in total and she can cue in three: British-English, German & French. She can also cue in American-English which differs very slightly to take account of the two different accents.  Her next challenge is to learn to cue in Hebrew.

When you explain Cued Speech to someone, what do you say?

I usually start by explaining that in English, lipreading alone gives only about 30% of the information you need. Cued Speech uses handshapes placed round the mouth to supplement that 30% in order that every sound looks clearly different from every other. That way, even a completely deaf child has complete access to every sound that is spoken, and so can learn full sound-based language. Then they can learn to read and write that language in exactly the same way as a hearing child would, which is something that many non-cueing deaf children really struggle with. After all, being deaf doesn’t necessarily make you disabled; being illiterate does.

And the one person who really needs to hear that is?

Parents! There is so much conflicting information out there and parents are often left confused and feeling like very limited communication with their child is the best they can expect, at least for a very long time. Whenever I teach a parent to cue, I feel like I am empowering them to take back their language and their relationship with their child.  

Click here to read full Interview

Emma says "There are a few Cued Speech families with under-5s in the Exeter area so we are thinking of establishing a monthly coffee meet, probably in the Sense café in the centre of Exeter. Nothing formal, just chatting and sharing advice! If you would like to join us, please get in touch and we can try to find a mutually convenient day and time."

Cued Speech – advantages for literacy

The literacy levels of deaf children are a continuing cause for concern, with most deaf children still lagging significantly behind hearing children, and the recent magazine of the British Association of Teachers of the Deaf (BATOD) was devoted entirely to the subject; CSAUK Director, Anne Worsfold, contributed an article.

Deaf children who grow up with Cued Speech (CS) do not fit that mould.  Because they can both fully access language and are fully aware of the small sound-based units (phonemes) which make up language, their literacy levels can match hearing children.  The aim of Anne’s article was originally to give an overview of international research and best practice, drawing mainly from the book ‘Cued Speech and Cued Language for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children’ (2010).  This edited volume (which has 42 international contributors, including 25 professors or assistant or associate professors) draws on twenty years of international research to inform the four chapters which are devoted to the effects of CS use on the development of reading.  Anne tells us that distilling these four chapters (115 pages!) into a two page article proved impossible so the article looks at a small selection of the more significant research and finishes with excerpts from a parent’s story illustrating one child’s success: 

‘After only the first week of training we could say to our son anything at all that we wished in the English language (just as we would be able to type it) and he could fully access this, regardless of the fact that he couldn’t hear a single sound of it.’

‘It seemed unbelievable and miraculous to us that we could cue to him nonsense words, silly sounds, nursery rhymes, read stories to him, chat to him, to say to him whatever we pleased in English with every bit of syntax, grammar and vocabulary fully, simply and easily represented as though speaking normally. The discovery of CS and what it could do for our son and for us as a family was truly and profoundly life-changing, and continues to be thirteen years down the line.’
‘He took very easily to reading and writing – more easily than many of his hearing peers – perhaps helped by already having a visual phonic ‘map’ in his head from his early exposure to CS…. by age 6 he had a reading age of 10; he achieved Level 4/5s in his English SATs in Year 6; and now, at 14, he has a reading age of 16+.’

To read the whole article: click here

For information about the book referred to above: click here
Contact details:
9 Jawbone Hill  Dartmouth
Devon  TQ6 9RW
Voice & textphone: 01803 832784

Charity No 279523  Company No 1477997

Cued Speech Association UK  (CSAUK) is a charity which was established in 1975 to provide information about and training in Cued Speech.

Deaf students learning a second spoken language

Cued Speech (CS) is in widespread use in France and many cueing professionals there need to support their deaf pupils as they learn English.  Since the students already know French through CS (the French name is LPC) it is a small step to learn English through CS – and, of course, the same applies to deaf students here who want to learn French.  The French and English CS systems are largely the same but differ slightly to take account of different sounds in the two languages (for example English has extra sounds such as /th/ and French has some extra sounds such the nasal vowel sounds). 
Recently two French Cued Speech Transliterators, Charlene Gourmelon and Charlene Soreau, visited CS tutor Cate Calder to observe her work in Devon and together they took the opportunity to produce some brilliant resources which show the similarities and differences of the two languages – all clarified visually.  It’s fascinating for both deaf people and hearing to see the sounds so clearly differentiated – take a look. 

Click here to view the series

The New Children and Families Act
The ‘once in a generation’ changes contained within the new Children and Families Act are now official; the Act was given royal assent on Thursday 13th March.  The government’s aim was to ‘reform services for vulnerable children’ and the Bill covers ‘in care’ children, adoption, child care, disabled children and children with Special Educational Needs (SEN).  With such a wide remit and with such a large range of children with SEN it was inevitable that the needs of some children with SEN would be taken into account whilst others were side-lined. 
Deaf children are a small minority in comparison with all SEN children and CS-using deaf children are an even smaller minority so it was vital that the CSAUK worked – both as an individual organisation and in partnership with others - to ensure that their needs were taken into account.  Astonishingly, this ‘consultation’ has now gone on for two years and started when the green paper, ‘Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability’, was published on the 18 March 2011. 
The government has been open to change in the face of feedback and there have been some beneficial changes.  But the process is not over yet; the Act will not cover all the details of support for SEN children and the practicalities of support will be spelt out in the accompanying Code of Practice, a draft of which was published in October.  In turn the Code of Practice will set out what must be covered in a Local Offer (of SEN services) which all local authorities will have to publish.  We gave detailed feedback on the draft Code of Practice and the final Code will be published this spring and debated in parliament before being accepted. 
So our work continues!  Our key aims now are for the Code of Practice to 1.) uniformly address the needs of deaf babies and toddlers in the 0 – 5 age range and their families and 2.) require the L.A.s to set out in the Local Offer how they will meet their obligations under the Equality Act to make both language and education fully accessible to deaf children.  Both of these will open the door to increased use of CS which in turn will drive up deaf children’s outcomes. 
We are hopeful that when the new Code of Practice is published our concerns will have been addressed and we can hang up our campaigning hats ….but we’re not holding our breath.

Hope you like the first use of our new logo, part of our wider re-branding exercise.  You will see it in a range of colours.


Cued Speech -
complete spoken language through vision


Cued Speech is a
simple system which 
makes spoken language
fully accessible to
deaf and hearing-impaired
babies, children and adults.
Copyright © 2014 Cued Speech Association UK, All rights reserved.