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Spring 2016


Issue 67

Cue Camp 2016

Friday 19th - Sunday 21st August

After the success of previous year’s Cue Weekends, we have booked the Slapton Ley Field Centre (SLFC) once more, for fun, residential access to Cued Speech.  The weekend will consist of structured, tutor-led classes at beginner, improver and advanced levels for the visiting parents and professionals, whilst the children enjoy their own activities in the natural surroundings on the coast at Slapton.  Older kids will partake in informal and incidental learning in the form of nature-based activities carried out by staff at the SLFC, whilst the younger kids will be cared for by professionals in the crèche - with Cued Speech Transliterators and, if needed, BSL interpreters providing access to language.

We have secured a range of facilities to keep you and your families happy and entertained for the weekend on the site and the option of family camping is available, as well as catered on-site accommodation. 

Families have always enjoyed our event, and feedback from 2014 has highlighted the sense of community, and shared learning when cueing at the Camp.  This is a weekend getaway that is both educational and fun for all the family, allowing you to achieve, whilst in a relaxed and friendly environment.

Interest in this event is already high.  Please contact us in the office to request booking information, or visit our website for more information.

Cued Speech,THRASS and Phonics 

for Deaf and Hearing Impaired Children

By Charlotte Lynch - a Teacher of the Deaf working for Babcock Education’s Hearing Impairment Team in Devon. She has used Cued Speech alongside THRASS as well as BSL, to give deaf children in mainstream schools equal access to phonics and other aspects of the English language. Being deaf herself from a young age, she recognises first hand the value of Cued Speech in making all sounds visible which are indistinguishable through lipreading and listening alone.

What is Cued Speech?
Cued Speech is a visual representation of spoken English and gives deaf and hearing impaired children full access to all speech sounds. It is made up of 8 different handshapes and 4 mouth positions to give full visual access to the 44 sounds of English. The basic system can be learnt in a day.  Cued Speech tutors in Devon are able to train staff working with deaf and hearing impaired children, and Teachers of the Deaf can advise on how to apply these skills in the classroom setting. The system gives visual access to the whole of the English language, but can also be used specifically to support literacy and phonics for hearing children with speech processing difficulties or other difficulties such as verbal dyspraxia.


What is THRASS?
THRASS (Teaching Handwriting, Reading and Spelling Skills) is a visual approach to teaching phonics to all children which has been less popular in recent years due to government policy not to support reading approaches which use pictures and an increasing emphasis on listening. This poses huge problems for deaf children who are unable to access the full range of sounds without visual clues. Children with auditory discrimination issues will also be at a disadvantage. Devised for all children, THRASS is also a valuable specialist intervention tool for these children who cannot fully access phonics through listening alone.

For example sounds ‘p’ and ‘b’ may sound very different to a hearing person but look identical on the lips to anyone relying on lipreading. Using the ‘THRASS chart’, children can be given a memory ‘hook’ to help them visualise that the sound ‘p’ can be represented by one letter ‘p’ as in  panda or two letters as in hippo, and the sound ‘b’ can be represented by one letter as in  bird or two letters as in rabbit. Used in conjunction with Cued Speech, this becomes immediately accessible for deaf children.

THRASS is also a visual tool which can help emerging writers to make spelling choices by embedding visual images in their memory. Sounds are grouped together in a visual way so that the child can be prompted with spelling choices for example, the ‘c’ sound like at the beginning of cat can be represented by the letter ‘c’ in cat, ‘q’ in queen, ck in duck, ‘k; in kitten and ‘ch in school. By presenting these images visually it is much clearer and serves as a memory aid.


THRASS has a full range of materials for hearing children, and also, working with the Cued Speech Association UK, has created additional materials to support deaf children’s’ literacy and understanding of phonics. Babcock Hearing Impairment Team work closely with the Cued Speech Association UK to deliver training to schools using a systematic way of teaching phonics for deaf children. 
Cued Speech can be used to support the usual order of teaching phonics through programmes such as Letters and Sounds or Read, Write, Ink, but sometimes a more structured approach is needed, using the ‘gridding method’ shown below. This is similar to the ‘sound buttons’ method commonly used in schools but with a more visual approach.
Individual words can be ‘gridded’ on a chart as shown below.


Many children who are deaf or hearing impaired or those with limited speech and language will need an alternative whole word approach to support the teaching and learning of phonics as an intervention strategy.
If you know of any children who are not making adequate progress in phonics skills, you may like to find out more through our training courses.

A New Office

For the CSAUK

The Cued Speech Association UK (CSAUK) has recently moved their offices to Blackawton, Devon.  Only a few miles down the road of our previous location, it has the advantage of being more flexible accommodation, and slightly closer to civilisation than our previous cliff-top barn.
Our details are now as follows:
CSAUK, The Forces, Forces Cross, Blackawton, Devonn TQ9 7DJ
Tel: (01803) 712853
Please contact us there regarding training or information whenever you require our help.  Our offices are open Monday-Thursday, 9-5, and a member of staff will always be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Cued Speech 50th Anniversary Conference

July 8-10th, Westin Tyson Corner Hotel, Falls Church, Virginia 

2016 is the 50th Anniversary of the development of Cued Speech, and the National Cued Speech Association of America are holding an international conference to mark the event.  This conference, open to cuers all over the world, will include presentations on research, education, advocacy and support. 

The international presenters include Dr Guita Movallali whose subject is Persian (Farsi) Cued Speech; Belgian researcher, Brigitte Charlier; Nina Jacob and Iana Cadhit who are describing Cued Speech in the Philippines.  USA-based academics and practitioners include Kelly Crain on the development of Visual Amharic (Ethiopia); Kitri Kyllo and Karen Doenges who describe developing English language and literacy through visual access to the fundamental phonemic level, and a research review from Carol LaSasso.

The Northern Virginia Cued Speech Association will provide games and activities for children, and those arriving a day early can take a 4-hour tour of Washington, DC with Cued Speech Transliteration throughout. 

For more information about this event, or to register for the conference, please follow this link.

Cued Speech in other languages

Scottish Cued Speech

Carrying on with the international theme, tutor Paul-Michael Coldham has put together a wonderful rendition of Robert Burns classic “Auld Lang Syne”, complete with a Scottish accent, and subtitles, making it fully accessible to all viewers.  Scottish English is a little different from the English spoken in the majority of England, and the Scottish Cued Speech version fully reflects these differences.  To see how this national piece looks when cued, please click his picture (above).

Cued Speech in Hebrew

Cued Speech tutor, Emma Sadeghi, has been an active cuer for seven years, and in that time she has mastered the ability to cue in several languages, one of which is Hebrew.  Below she tells the story of her achievements and how Hebrew Cued Speech has influenced both her learning and her teaching.
"Back in 2008, I took my very first Cued Speech class with the wonderful Cate Calder. We were introduced to Cue Script in that first lesson, and the whole concept (symbols for the consonant handshapes, with the vowel sounds written underneath) was immediately familiar to me. Hebrew, which I learned many years ago, works in exactly the same way: each letter represents a consonant sound, and the symbols for the following vowel sound are usually written beneath the consonant letter.

Fast forward to late 2015 and the CSAUK office received an inquiry about Hebrew Cued Speech, which they passed on to me. An adult with very specific learning needs wanted to learn to read Hebrew. She was familiar with Cued Speech, though could not cue fluently, and felt that cueing would help her learn the new alphabet...(ctnd)"

To read the complete account - click here.

Books Old & New

Me to You: Let's Cue

Following on from its release last year, you may remember mention of Carly Simpson, our North West tutor, and her child’s cueing book, Me to You: Let’s Cue.  This book is a wonderful basics introduction to cueing simple words and is available online as an ebook at the following link.

We now have hardcover copies  available in the office, at the cost of £9.99 (+postage).  To buy a copy of this book, please send us an email and we’d be happy to help.

Are you interested in Cued Speech history or research?

We have some vintage copies of the pioneering research booklet ‘Cued Speech and the Reception of Spoken Language’, by Gaye H. Nicholls to give away.

We also have some copies of proficiency manual ‘Gaining Cued Speech Proficiency - A Manual for Parents, Teachers and Clinicians’, by Walter J. Beaupre.

These are available only for the cost of postage.

NDCS Survey

for professionals who work with deaf children across the UK

We’re pleased to pass on this survey from the National Deaf Children's Society (NDCS).  They tell us that they are looking to get a better understanding of how professionals use their services and how they can better improve our professional membership offer.  They say: ‘Please take a few minutes to complete this survey to share your thoughts, ideas and opinions. As a thank you, everyone who completes this survey will be entered into a prize draw to win a £25 Amazon or Love2Shop voucher!’

Click here to take the survey.
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