Learning Welsh with a hearing difficulty

Hello, I’ve been struggling to learn Welsh (and any other language for that matter) as I have a hearing difficulty. Everything merges into one sound or is muffled and i cannot for the life of me work out what is being said. Saying that English is pretty tough too at times! Has anyone else managed to learn with this sort of handicap? Any tips? I lip read so the downloaded lessons are sometimes impossible (after I’ve heard the welsh part I then understand what the English part was asking… sometimes :confused: )

There is this thread


@jamesmahoney just posted the right thread where you can read all sorts of (I believe) helpful things. Alternatively @MarilynHames is the right person who knows all about it. She’s hearing impared and managed to learn through SSiW the most. For the addition, she always manages to put things into wonderful storytelling … :slight_smile:

And, what I want to add the most is: Warm welcome to the forum @charliehrh. Hope you’d find lots of useful and helpfu things here including the great community we all are.

Tatjana :slight_smile:

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Welcome to the forum, Charlie! :slight_smile:

This approach is inevitably very tough going for people with hearing difficulties. You might be able to get some help from the vocab lists - and we’re also looking in the direction of ‘video’ lessons which will have the written words, which might help you… :slight_smile:


Thank you everyone for the warm welcome. I’m going to put on the positive thinking head and keeping chipping away at it. Dal ati!


Take heart! Even the hard-of-hearing can develop an ‘ear’ for Welsh over time.

Being hard-of-hearing, when I first dipped my toe in the water with SSiW, I was almost fanatical trying to make sure I picked up every little sound and squeak, fretting over changes in consonants (aka mutations). Folk on this Forum were incredibly helpful and patient–so thank you friends!

I am now half way through the Third Course, having done both the old and new material up to the end of the Intermediate, and just lately realized my brain seems to have ‘switched on to Welsh’ and I am translating almost instinctively. It is as if I now have an ‘ear’ for it and am fairly romping through the material.

For anyone in the same boat, just try to relax and keep going, then one day it just ‘comes’. However, I still take ‘selective dictation’ while listening and note the time against anything still bothering me so that I can go back. It helps.

So friends, onwards…


Another little tip… by looking at the written patterns and words to be introduced before starting a lesson, I am mentally prepared for sounds I might not have been able to identify–priming the brain so to speak.

This might not be the recommended approach to SSiW, but it is a tactic the hard-of-hearing may find helpful.

It also makes it easier to ‘take selective dictation’ on the fly, noting the time against troublesome sounds without interrupting the lesson. That way, we can relax and continue, knowing there will be plenty of time afterwards to solve the puzzle, or ask for help here.