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What’s the difference between BSL and Makaton?

Annette Butler

What’s the difference between BSL and Makaton?kids_signing

Makaton is designed to be used to support spoken language, for people with learning or communication difficulties. Makaton is often used alongside speech to help aid children and adults with communication. It is common for people to eventually stop using signs as their speech develops.

British Sign Language (BSL) is a language with its own structure and grammar and uses hand signs, body language, facial expression and lip patterns. It is the language used by the deaf community in the UK and, as with any spoken language, is constantly evolving.

The signs used in Makaton are taken from Sign Language and, as Sign Language differs from country to country, so does Makaton. However, unlike Sign Language which has regional variations and dialects, the signs for Makaton will be the same throughout the country.

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