I attended my first session with Tom and the Stafford group in January of this year. Prior to joining, communication with Tom was first class, and all my queries/questions were answered.
That first session was a little daunting – meeting a group of people in an environment that was completely new to me. That daunting feeling lasted all of five minutes. Tom and the rest of the group were so welcoming, reassuring, and certainly put my mind at ease.
Of course due to Covid19 our sessions were changed from physical to online sessions in April of this year. However, the group adapted well to the change and Zoom became the new norm.
I always look forward to my Friday morning group – not just for the lip reading practice. This group is so much more than a lip reading class. It’s educational, informative, fun and supportive – all of which is so important in the current climate.
Stef, August 2020
During lockdown, Tom Kane has continued our weekly Stafford-based Lipreading class through Zoom meetings. This has been no easy task, but with his usual brand of humour, patience and expertise, the group has been able to meet ‘virtually’, progress in lipreading skills, and maintain the fun and cohesiveness of the group.
Hearing impairment is a hidden disability with huge impact on day to day life: Tom gives us the confidence to manage our hearing loss and to be assertive in sometimes challenging situations.
I joined Tom’s class at Stafford last summer not knowing what to expect but hoping that I would receive some help to alleviate my deafness. It has been an interesting experience so far with plenty of laughter aided by Tom’s light hearted method of teaching assisted by his dog Harley. I think it has improved my confidence because I felt shut off from the world by missing so much of the spoken word. It is taking time but I am slowly beginning to grasp lip reading and sign language. I would thoroughly recommend anyone who is deaf to come along to this class as Tom also gives lots of advice and helpful tips on managing your deafness.
Coping with Deafness through Lipreading, I cannot recommend these classes to people and their families who struggle with their hearing organised by Deafnable enough. You meet others in similar situations, learn lip reading skills in a relaxed, fun setting where nobody is embarrassed at all by ‘getting it wrong.’ You learn coping tactics, adjusting the environments to your best advantage, how to ask the right questions so that you get complete understanding. You learn many other things to but, most importantly, you gain confidence so that you are able to challenge the injustices and ignorance hard of hearing people suffer day in day out. You get the confidence to think’ hang on, this just isn’t right’ and challenging this spurs you on to the bigger picture of helping every other hard of hearing sufferer, and making a difference. You owe it to yourself to join these classes, don’t sit and suffer in silence, you are most certainly not alone.
Joining Tom's lipreading group has been enriching.
I have gained confidence in myself, to let other people know I am hearing impaired ,without constantly apologising and feeling embarrassed as I did before .
Tom's lesson's are fun and interesting and we all support each other in the group.
We are all very different and each of us take what we need from the class, to help us along in our hearing impaired lives, with the confidence to finally be heard .
For five years I’ve joined with other hearing impaired adults in Stafford town centre each Friday morning, 10am til 12noon. Tom has taught me the techniques of lipreading (and finger spelling) - so useful in busy or noisy locations - to back up the speech of those with whom I communicate, socially, in shops, on trains etc. I have also learned how to manage my disability, to be assertive when necessary and to inform of my hearing impairment when talking to a receptionist, shopkeeper etc. We have learned about the ‘bigger picture’ in relation to hearing loss, giving me confidence to ask, listen and learn about the help available or the ways in which we can ‘fight our battles’ in order that effects of our disability are are minimised.
Thank you for making Lip Reading classes interesting, informative and fun. Looking forwards to the nexr course!
Deaf N Able are brilliant especially the amazing Harley
Awesome dude, is helping me feel better and put things into place in the hearing world.
After every class my wife and I come away smiling after enjoying 2 hours of fun but also with more information on how I can improve my communication, not only with my wife, but with my friends and my family. As a hearing impaired person, wearing two hearing aids, I have also learned how to look after them properly. My confidence to meet and talk to people has improved
too. Tom, our tutor, is a great guy, he is deaf himself and has two hearing aids - plus Harley, his personal Hearing Dog.
The Tamworth Coping with Deafness through Lipreading class on Monday mornings has been the most helpful group that I have attended. Tom Kane and his Dog Harley come along and teach Lipreading , but also have a wealth off knowledge and all things to do with deafness.
This class is for the benefit of those with any degree of deafness plus their family and friends. Lipreading goes hand in hand with the loss of hearing with or without hearing aids .
Apart from learning Lipreading I have gained new friendships with other members of the group.
My advice to others is come along and give us a try
We have been attending this Course for about 3 years, since Tutor Tom offered to run one for us. (as they are like Gold dust!)
What we have learned is immeasurable, and still learning and picking up useful information, as well as making good friends, in the same situation.
As well as Lipreading, we learnt how to cope better & that we are not alone, confidence has grown immensely. And also pick up useful information.
We never apologise for being deaf” is Toms catchphrase I think.
My husband went completely deaf eventually, and the support we received from Tom and the group members all through the Cochlear Implant Program to having the Implant, made a huge difference.
I am hearing and it’s taught me a lot too & to understand and cope better with a deaf Partner.
I would recommend this Course to anyone, hard of hearing, deaf or hearing. Go and give it try you learn and laugh too.
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