"When I got into the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, a doctor told me to give up the course as I'd be totally deaf within a couple of years. But I refused to give in."
I regularly practice blends with my group and we look at how the different sounds look with each other and how they affect each other. Some sounds combinations do not fit into visible or invisible as part of the blend may be visible while the other is not e.g. cr; gl; I had not made a sound chart for this work until recently. It also depends on the speaker whether the lipshape/patterns of the sounds can be seen.
I was reading "Journey into Silence" by Jack Ashley and was interested to see that he put words with as many of the different sound combinations as he could so that he would learn to recognise them. This was part of his tremendous effort to improve his lipreading skills. His dedication to learning lipreading together with the support of his family, friends and colleagues enable him to continue with his role as an MP.
I have made a sound chart based on this idea. If you wish to use it please do and please add any others that you find. Remember it is important that you practise conversations too as it is through practising lipreading others, that you will develop your ability to read all the lipreading clues. I remind you again that the best way to learn to lipread is to go to a lipreading class – it’s so much more fun!!
Journey into Silence Jack Ashley MP
published by Bodley Head Ltd 1973
How can we help?