ABC (Achieving Better Communication) Programme

What is ABC?

Our Achieving Better Communication (ABC) programme delivers communication support to babies, children and young adults with Down’s syndrome. ABC sessions run weekly and provide information and support to parents and activities for children to develop communication skills that can be continued in the home, community, and nursery/school environment.

The ABC programme uses research findings on the specific learning style and language development profile of children with Down’s syndrome to develop targeted communication support. Our sessions are therefore very focused on using visual communication tools to teach children and their adult helper strategies which support sequencing, recall and peer communication skills such as turn taking, waiting and active listening. All our tutors use Makaton to support communication in sessions where appropriate for the individual.

Groups will normally consist of 2, 3 or 4 children and the sessions vary in length depending on the size of the group from 30 minutes up to 1 hour long. A parent/carer or education support attends with each child and joins the group activities; this ensures that the techniques and approach can be transferred to home and nursery/school so that the child’s communication development can be consistently supported in all settings.

You can read more about how our ABC Programme works and the structure of our classes in the leaflet below.

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You can view a clip of some of our sessions below.


We are receiving encouraging feedback from families accessing ABC at home and School/Nursery, telling us how easily their child is adapting to the sessions and sharing their appreciation and thanks for how we have been able to continue supporting them at this time.

“Tyree has been enjoying the sessions. He seems more focused on the class than he would be in person.”

“The two zoom classes that Rosie has done with Katy have been great and she has been really engaged and enjoyed them”

We are delighted to be able to offer more ABC face-to-face sessions in Glasgow, Dundee and Linlithgow. Sessions will include Monthly ABC First Steps and ABC Songs, Stories and Signs Face-to-Face sessions for a variety of age groups. You can find out more about these here.

If you are a member of DSS you can also access additional ABC communication support and resources on our online community platform (Hub 21). You can read more Hub 21 here.

If you would like to find out more about joining our ABC programme, please email You can also register your interest in joining by completing the form below and sending it to

All of our online sessions comply with our Online Safeguarding policy, which can be accessed here, please take the time to read this policy prior to your session if you have any questions we are more than happy to answer them.