Cued Speech: Guide

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Bilingualism – Spoken Languages

The system of Cued Speech has been adapted for at least 68 languages and dialects and more are being developed all the time.  This means that it is highly likely that families and professionals will be able to represent as many spoken languages as they wish for the deaf children in their lives.  There are as many ways to model more than one language for children as there are families doing so.  One tried and tested method is for someone to use different hands for the different languages eg cue English with the right hand and French with the left.  Deaf children receiving languages in this way are no different to hearing children hearing the different languages and will easily adapt.  All children in bilingual situations will naturally ‘code switch’ expressively for a while and use a mixture of words from each language before they refine their skills to one language at a time.

'Using Cued Speech, families can also raise multilingual children who might understand Spanish, English and Dutch for example.  I know of families where the children use three modes of communication, spoken English, ASL, and Cued English.’ Charles Berlin Ph.D., who is Professor of Hearing Science and Clinical Professor of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, LSU Health Services Center

Parents of a profoundly deaf child describe how their family was able to give their deaf daughter full access to both English and French by cueing each language. Their daughter developed age appropriate language and literacy in both languages.

Film of the same family discussing their cueing journey.

CS has been adapted to many different languages and dialects around the world and more are being developed all the time, and this link lists many of them.