Wednesday 20/02/91 – 1st Lesson Cape Town

DIARY NOTES – In 1991, 23 years ago today this is what Vanessa at the Carel du Toit Centre in Cape Town wrote in the ‘Diary’.

23 years ago today, Hughan and I were back in Cape Town, and Vanessa was writing in our diary.

I was being taught how to work with Hughan –

Hughan and I had flown to Cape Town from Gaborone, via Johannesburg. We were back at the Carel du Toit Centre where we were being taught how to encourage Hughan to use his voice to communicate with us.

This was a speech orientated programme which did not include signing.

Vanessa was very excited to see Hughan and I again. Hughan was very happy to be back at the centre.

During our classes I worked with Hughan and Vanessa observed us from another room, correcting me as I played with Hughan over a loudspeaker system.

Activity : car hunt

You gave lovely commands without clues.

“Put the truck in the box”, “look under the bed”, “look behind the curtain”, “pull the blanket” – you are also NOT gesturing. When he doesn’t understand what you have said you execute the command.

Lovely, you pointed out that the green Kombi and his shoes were the same colour. This is a super concept to reinforce.

Here’s auditory response generally is much better. He responded to –

  • his name
  • knocking on the door
  • knocking over the microphone (he thought it was the door)

When giving a command and he doesn’t understand, before you do the command prompt him

eg. “Look behind the curtain”, “where is the curtain?”, “there is the curtain” – then repeat the command – “ look behind the curtain” and if he is still does not respond then you do the command.

Super, you pointed out a big car and a small car. A big wheel and a small wheel.

This would make a lovely theme for the book: big and small pictures.

I love the way he hid the cars – showed and said “gone” and then finds it again with much glee.

Well done Sue! You’re using sound to get his attention and you’re not touching him.

Hunts - are a lovely opportunity to extend and reinforce receptive language. Play these games at home in the bedroom, lounge etc. You can hide anything – animals, sweets, toys etc.

Try and hide the same things eg: rabbits, blocks, dogs, books etc, so it is one concept and you can compare the items – like you compared the cars today – big, small, sounds, wheels etc.

Thanks Sue, this was super. He is responding lots, especially his auditory awareness. His attention is a lot better.

Welcome back, it is WONDERFUL to see you again. Birthday and all this is really going to be a special visit.

Enjoy the afternoon


(Helping parents with hearing impaired children through our experience…we are following our profoundly deaf son’s diary, from 1990, so you can see what we did to help him with his speech and hearing. Hughan is 25 years old now and he can hold a conversation on a phone. It is the little thing we did every day, over a long period of time, that has helped him. Please visit our page…’like’ and follow us to help others…Thank you :) )

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